I am going to break things down division by division and tell you who I think will make the playoffs. I like to think outside of the box, so I’m waiting for the criticism…
NFC EAST – Cowboys, Eagles, Giants, Redskins…. I like the Cowboys to surprise everyone this year. I love the addition of Rob Ryan to be the defensive coordinator, and the team is finally healthy. Too many questions for me with the Eagles (Linebacker, Safety’s and O-Line) and will Mike Vick stay healthy. Key injuries on the Giants defensive side have me worried, and I don’t like this Redskin team at all.
NFC WEST – Rams, Cardinals, 49ers, Seahawks… I love the addition of Josh McDaniels to work with Sam Bradford and I think Steven Jackson and an underrated defense help them win this division. Robert Quinn will be the defensive R.O.Y. I think Arizona gives them a run for their money, but they still come up short when all is said and done. Let’s be honest… The Seahawks and ‘Niners are going to suck this year. I still don’t understand what Pete Carroll is doing in Seattle.
NFC SOUTH – Saints, Buccaneers, Falcons, Panthers… I love what the Saints have done in the offseason. They improved their run defense, run offense and added some help to the interior of that offensive line. I think the Bucs take a step forward and make the playoffs this year. I’m sure I’m going to catch heat for picking the Falcons third. I don’t like their defense and I think they take a step back. The Panthers were the worst team in football last year, need I say more?
NFC NORTH – Packers, Bears, Lions, Vikings… I think this is one of the hardest divisions to pick after the Packers. Green Bay is absolutely loaded and they will win this division. I think the Bears take a step back, but I still think they are better than the Lions. I hope Stafford stays healthy and we get to see him for a full season. The Lions D-Line is terrific but the secondary and running game still worries me. Vikings lost their left tackle, starting defensive end and their best wide receiver and didn’t improve their weak secondary.
Wild Card teams are Eagles and Buccaneers.