The NFL season is finally here and it’s time to embarrass myself by selecting the teams who will win each division and be in the playoffs. This is simply an exercise to give the readers and listeners more mocking fuel when half of these teams are in last place and thinking about firing their coaching staffs.
Winner: Dallas Cowboys
Why? Would it be disingenuous to say that it’s simply their turn? There are three teams who can win this division- Dallas, New York and Washington but you can make great reasons to pick any of them. I believe Dez Bryant ascends toward elite wideout status and the Cowboys defense should be improved under Monte Kiffin.
Winner: Chicago Bears
Why? It sounds crazy but the Bears can not only compete with Green Bay, they have a better all-around team than the Packers do. The Bears have upgraded the coaching staff and Jay Cutler is going to be “Smoking” in his contract season.
Winner: New Orleans Saints
Why? In the NFC South, all four teams can win the division with a little injury luck and all four teams can finish last. Although everyone is picking the Falcons, their inexperience in the secondary and defense overall is scary. New Orleans has a Hall of Fame quarterback, they return their head coach and they have a major chip on their shoulders.
Winner: San Francisco 49ers
Why?Colin Kaepernick is the best quarterback in that division and they have the best defense in the division. Although the West will be tougher with an improved Rams team and the always tough Seahawks, the 49ers have the fewest question marks.
NFC Wildcard Teams: Green Bay Packers, Seattle Seahawks
NFC Champion: Green Bay Packers
Winner: New England Patriots
Why? Who else are you going to pick? It’s Tom Brady’s division and although the Dolphins defense could be legitimately great, you’re reaching if you’re picking Ryan Tannehill over Tom Brady.
Winner: Cincinnati Bengals
Why? As much as i’m an Andy Dalton skeptic, the Bengals have no glaring weaknesses on any part of their team (maybe head coach). This division will beat itself up and Cincy will likely end up with one more victory than Baltimore.
Winner: Indianapolis Colts
Why? The Colts have the best quarterback in the division (by far) and although their roster is far from complete, that second-place schedule will prove to be just enough to get the Colts to leapfrog over the aging Texans, whose window may have already closed.
Winner: Denver Broncos
Why? Peyton Manning > Alex Smith > Philip Rivers > Terrell Pryor? The Broncos have issues on defense but they also have the Chiefs, Chargers and Raiders in their division. There’s virtually no way they can’t win the division.
AFC Wildcard Teams: Baltimore Ravens, Houston Texans
AFC Champion: New England Patriots
Super Bowl Champion: Green Bay Packers
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