The 2014-15 season is upon us and every person on the face of the earth is dishing out their predictions, so we decided to join the club.
Coming off a 2013-14 season where the Seattle Seahawks dismantled the entire NFL, including a 43-8 stomping of the Denver Broncos in Super Bowl XLVIII and a fan base that increased by about 450,000 people per week.
But that was February, and this is September and with a new year poses new questions heading into the 2014-15 season that include:
1. Will the Seattle Seahawks repeat?
2. Will the Denver Broncos offseason spending payoff with a Super Bowl victory ? (Aqib Talib, DeMarcus Ware, T.J. Ward and Emmanuel Sanders)
3. How many announcers will or will not say the term: “Redskins”
4. How many favorite players will Jon Gruden have this year?
5. When will see a rookie quarterback not named Derek Carr start a game?
Although I gave this much thought, I am basing my predictions off that the fact that these teams play out the 16 games and battle through injuries while avoiding any unlucky things that change the course of the game or the season.
AFC West: Denver Broncos
I mean lets be real here, Denver is winning the division, I don’t need to give you a reason as to why, you know they are. Just look at the picture!
AFC East: New England Patriots
I mean lets be real here, New England is winning the division, I don’t need to give you a reason why, just look at the picture.
AFC North: Baltimore Ravens
I’ll have to explain myself for this one so here I go: The Ravens have made the playoffs every year since Joe Flacco was drafted in 2008 expect last year, a year many people around the Ravens called a “Super Bowl hangover” – All in all, with the addition of Steve Smith Sr. and drafting of CJ Mosley, I think the Ravens will win the division, now they will be without Ray Rice (2.2 yards a carry) for the first two games of the season, but they’ll survive thanks to Joe Flacco and co. I will say their secondary is a bit suspect and might be the reason why I may be wrong.
AFC South: Indianapolis Colts
I’m picking Andrew Luck and the Colts to win the AFC South not just because of Andrew Luck and one of the best receiving corps in the NFL but because the rest of the division consists of Ryan Fitzpatrick, Jake Locker and Chad Henne. I don’t think the Colts will lose a game in this division.
Wild Card: San Diego Chargers and Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs face the Steelers in week 16 in Pittsburgh and host the Chargers in Week 17 and what could decide the finally Wild Card spot. I think the recent arrest of Steelers running backs LeVeon Bell and LaGarrette Blount will have a bigger impact on the season than most people expect. Big Ben and his offensive coordinator issues will carry over but they will stay alive, I just have more faith in Kansas City’s defense than Pittsburgh’s. But remember, last two games for Chiefs: at Pittsburgh and home against the Chargers. That will decide the Wild Card spots.
Wild Card Round
6. San Diego Chargers vs. 3. Indianapolis Colts
(Prediction: Colts 35, Chargers 30)
5. Kansas City Chiefs vs. 4. Baltimore Ravens
(Prediction: Ravens 20, Chiefs 16)
3. Indianapolis Colts vs. 2. New England Patriots
(Prediction: Patriots 24, Colts 17)
4. Baltimore Ravens vs. 1. Denver Broncos
(Prediction: Broncos 38, Ravens 24)
AFC Championship Game
2. New England Patriots vs. 1. Denver Broncos
(Prediction: Broncos 31, Patriots 27)
Denver advances to the Super Bowl simply because the supporting cast for the Broncos is better than the supporting cast for the New England Patriots. Peyton will come into 2014-15 with a chip on his shoulder knowing that his legacy would be impacted greatly if he doesn’t get the job done. He gets past New England again and returns to the Super Bowl.
NFC West: Seattle Seahawks
Coming into this season, I thought the 49ers would be able to dethrone the champs, but after a preseason of offensive failures, Aldon Smith’s 9 game suspension and Ray McDonald’s arrest, the Seahawks might just sweep the 49ers this year. As for the rest of the NFC West? No. Sorry.
NFC East: Philadelphia Eagles
Before I started writing this article, I was most certainly going to pick the Dallas Cowboys, yes the Dallas Cowboys to win the NFC East. The reason? Every year since 2009, the division winner has been the team we least expected before the season started; in 2009, the Dallas Cowboys, a team that many people thought would “blow it all up” and fire Wade Phillips, turned around their season in December (the month they usually fall apart) and won the NFC East and went on to win a playoff game. In 2010, the Philadelphia Eagles led by the rejuvenated Michael Vick shocked us all after people expected the Eagles to struggle with Kevin Kolb. In 2011, the New York Giants, a team that went on and won the Super Bowl at 9-7 had so many questions marks heading into 2011 that people wondered if Tom Coughlin would even finish the year as the coach. In 2012, led by rookie quarterback, Robert Griffin III the Washington Redskins overcame a 3-6 start to finish 10-6 and win the division. Last year, the Philadelphia Eagles who had plenty of question marks coming into the season with how Michael Vick would fit into the Chip Kelly system ended up switching to Nick Foles and you know happened after that. So this morning, I thought to myself? who do people least expect to win the division, and there I was picking the Dallas Cowboys until mid-way through this article I remembered Jerry Jones still runs the Cowboys and Jason Garrett is still the coach and I switched to the common pick, the Philadelphia Eagles. (Man, that was a long explanation)
NFC South: New Orleans Saints
It’s simple, the New Orleans Saints are the most improved team in the NFC South. Now I know Tampa Bay upgraded this offseason with Lovie Smith at the helm but I’m sorry I can’t pick Josh McCown over Drew Brees. The Saints have revamped their defense and drafted a stud wide receiver out of Oregon State, Bradin Cooks, another weapon for Drew Brees and company to use. The Falcons will be better while the Panthers will be worse but in the end the Saints go marching into the playoffs.
NFC North: Green Bay Packers
Aaron Rodgers is the best quarterback in the division and arguably in the league. He finally has a ‘legit’ running back in Eddie Lacy, something he didn’t need when he led the Packers to a Super Bowl in 2010. The defense lost B.J. Raji but it added Julius Peppers and Ha Ha Clinton Dix. Their secondary is underrated and will help that defense line create a lot of coverage sacks. Rodgers will have a monster year and Eddie Lacy will rush for over 1,000 yards. They will be good. Very good.
NFC Wild Card: San Francisco 49ers and New York Giants
Both teams looked terrible offensively in the preseason but both teams will get into the playoffs. Say what you want about Eli Manning but every time people doubt the guy, he leads his team to the Super Bowl. I’m not saying they will win the Super Bowl but they will get into the playoffs at 10-6. There’s a lot of distractions surrounding the 49ers, but Jim Harabaugh will get his team going, they’ll get in at 11-5. Giants rebuilt secondary will be really good while the 49ers offense (not defense) will be the reason they win a lot of game this year. The Cowboys will contend and will finish above .500 at 9-7.
NFC Wild Card
6. New York Giants vs. 3. Green Bay Packers
(Prediction: Packers 28, Giants 24)
Eli has the ball late in the fourth quarter to win it but this time he won’t be able to continue a magical run.
5. San Francisco 49ers vs. 4. Philadelphia Eagles
(Prediction: 49ers: 34, Eagles 29)
I said the 49ers offense will be better and win them some games including a playoff game against the high powered Philadelphia Eagles.
5. San Francisco 49ers vs. 1. Seattle Seahawks
(Prediction: Seahawks 21, 49ers 14)
Defense wins championships. Seahawks defense is better + that crowd in Seattle is something else. Kaepernick comes up short again!
3. Green Bay Packers vs. 2. New Orleans Saints
(Prediction: Saints 45, Packers 42)
Two high powered offenses in the Mercedes Super Dome, Brees vs. Rodgers, it will be a classic and the Saints will prevail.
NFC Championship Game
2. New Orleans Saints vs. 1. Seattle Seahawks
(Prediction Saints 27, Seahawks 23)
The New Orleans Saints will finally win a playoff game on the road in Seattle. I think. . .