Solomon Wilcots of the NFL Network joins Scott and Jeremy to discuss the upcoming season within the AFC North, and who he thinks will finish on top in the division.
For the past few seasons, the AFC North has been a three-team race to the finish, within black and blue divisional games being critical. Solomon Wilcots expects it to be no different this season.
“It’s a three team race without question, and if the Browns were to win it, that’d be shocking,” said Wilcots. “The Browns are closing the gap, but three team race without a doubt.”
“I think Cincinnati is the best team in the division, but for some reason the Ravens and Steelers have their number, and they seem to have a psychological advantage over the Bengals each time they play,” Wilcots added.
The Ravens may have that advantage on the field, but off it, there have been some issues. In regards to Ray Rice’s situation, Wilcots made a point that most Ravens fans have expressed in the last several days.
“Ray has done a lot more good than bad since he’s arrived in Baltimore.”
Wilcots added strongly that not only has Ray done a lot of good on the field, but he thinks the running back had just a big a role in the Ravens winning as his quarterback.
“Flacco never won a playoff game; his team won the playoff games. Quarterbacks don’t win games by themselves, teams win games,” Wilcots said.
Perhaps just as much of a lightning rod for controversy as Flacco, Dalton has been under fire in Cincinnati for under achieving in the postseason, but Wilcots feels Dalton is right where he should be.
“I think Dalton has already shown what type of quarterback he is. Only Peyton Manning and Marino have had three straight seasons of 20 or more touchdowns since coming into the league. He’s proven he can play.”
“The question remains, can the team around him get better. I think that’s how the Ravens approached things with Flacco as well,” said Wilcots.
Flacco and Dalton also have one more thing in common this upcoming season–a coordinator change.
“I think a lot of people in the football circle consider Hugh Jackson an upgrade at coordinator. I think they’ll be able to run the ball, which will make them even better at quarterback,“ said Wilcots.