In lieu of a philosophy revealing draft or big-time trade rumors of any significance, I've decided to fall in line with the cool kids and predict the regular season success of every franchise several months before the onset of training camp. Bite me, those who choose to wait and make logical speculation! I'm wild, crazy, and raring for some football!
This will be conducted in the usual fashion for this kind of thing; I'll be working my way from the top down at the rate of five teams a day. Enjoy!
#1: Indianapolis Colts. Some cite the fallout super bowl teams are so very prone to. Others would point to free agent losses like Dominic Rhodes, or the complacency of a team that's done everything there possibly is to do. But I look at this team and I see Peyton Manning, the ultimate competitor. I see a defense featuring many players in their prime, back nearly whole. And I therefore see a team that will very likely post the bet record in the league. Prediction:13-3
#2: New England Patriots. The team's gone in an entirely different direction, redefining what everyone thought was true about Boston's Brady Boys. Bill Bellichick's team, signing top free agents! Trading for headcases! Drafting college brawlers! My gut tells me that the genius who was Bill Parcells' primary disciple will handle it all with his usual aplomb; however, I'm still worried about what could theoretically happen the first time Randy Moss offers Tom Brady a snort in the locker room, prompting Brandon Merriweather to take a swing at the two of them and Adalius Thomas to show off his paycheck and mutter something about the disabled list. Prediction: 13-3
#3: San Diego Chargers. The most dynamic, young, exciting team in the league underwent major changes this offseason without losing a single significant player to free agency. How? The coaching staff was stripped bare from the top down. The headcoach, both coordinators; hell, I think they even had some position coaches bolt (No pun intended, my apologies). The team will be different with Norv Turner running it. The former OC savant is in awkward position; on one hand he'd have to be unequivocally awful to have a bad season with this team, and on the other anything short of 14 wins will be considered a failure. I'll be very interested to see what direction this franchise takes. Prediction: Prediction:12-4
#4: Baltimore Ravens. The Ravens are old. The Ravens are old school. The Ravens can't score. Regardless, the Ravens still maintain enough of their dominant Super Bowl Defense to compete in any game they get themselves into, and their stellar offensive line paves the way for what should be another fairly successful running game. Willis McGahee wil help them loads if healthy, and the only thing to watch for is the inevitable decline of mainstays like Ray Lewis and Jonathan Ogden. Prediction:12-4.
#5: Chicago Bears. Da Ursines are back without sustaining much damage. They dealt lead back Thomas Jones in a move that really does puzzle me-the only justification here is the "Former Top 5 Pick!" sticker on Ced Benson's back. Much like the Ravens, you can always depend on the D's consistency while sighing endlessly at the pitiful passing attack. If I were generally managing this squad I would have made it my priority to sign Jeff Garcia; but alas, I'm just an unemployed guy with a blog. They'll be the top team in the startlingly mediocre NFC yet again, and yet again the most exciting player on the team lacks a real position. (Hint, his name is Devin) Prediction:12-4.