04 Sep 2013
5-minute 10-minute NFL preview for the 2013 season. Teams are
listed in their predicted finish in their division:
New England Patriots On top until proven otherwise. I barely have to edit this column from year to year thanks to good quarterbacks. Unfortunately, at some point this column does have to rate the teams in the AFC South. Anyway, Tom Brady is all it'll take in this division.
Miami Dolphins People are predicting a big year for these guys. Can't tell why. I guess if familiarity breeds contempt then folks must be feeling lots of admiration for this squad. 9-7.
Buffalo Bills I liked Fitzpatrick and am sad to see him go. Still too many question marks to be good. Does 6-10 sound right? The Bills haven't finished with 7 wins since 2008, outside of the cellar since 2007, and with a winning record since 2004. Still rooting for them to make the playoffs for the first time since the 2nd millennium.
New York Jets Didn't they get worse from last year's train wreck? They should bring in Vince Young, who's looking for a job after being let go by Green Bay. Or as some commentators are wont to suggest, bring in Jeff George. Sources have confirmed that Thomas Jones is not their running back.
Pittsburgh Steelers My continuing logic on Pittsburgh is that its an every-other-year kind of team. Two years ago was their let-down year because they didn't make the Super Bowl, so last year should have been good, but they finished 8-8. So now I have no pattern to follow except by hoping last year's blip pushed everything back a year. So that means they'll be good this year--definitely in the playoffs! To summarize, no playoffs last year. No Super Bowl two years ago. 12-4 the year before. 9-7 the year before that. 12-4 the year before that. The best 8-8 team ever the year before that. The Super Bowl team the year before that.
Cincinnati Bengals Things are looking up for this squad. I see a second place finish in the division, although if I were to apply logic (NEVER!), I'd have them in first place. The "law firm" at running back doesn't give 'em much, but AJ Green is fun to confuse with AC Green, the NBA player. Wait, why else could these guys win this division?
Baltimore Ravens They got worse last year compared to two years ago and won a Super Bowl. So they should be unbelievably good this year. Except that they stunk last year. I'm still bitter. No playoffs for you! Note that in 2010 I was praising Flacco for getting the job done. But I've seen one too many underthrown balls to appreciate this team.
Cleveland Browns My theme for the Browns is to do something with the Internet. So I tried typing in one of those "something is..." phrases and let Google fill in the blanks. Apparently, "Cleveland Browns area rug." I guess I don't know how to work the Internet. So I added a space after "are" and came up with "Cleveland Browns are..." "named after," "sold," and "for sale." I'll predict 5 wins again.
Houston Texans They keep on coming up short in the playoffs. Perhaps they'll get over the hump this year! I'm kinda pulling for them. And in this division they may be able to get a first round bye.
Indianapolis Colts I'm not quite certain how they won 11 games last year. But that victory over Green Bay helped people believe they were the real deal. I'm no believer yet. 8-8.
Tennessee Titans I still miss Vince Young. Hopefully Chris Johnson will do his best Adrian Peterson impersonation and get this team on the right track. Still, 7-9 seems about as good as they can hope for.
Jacksonville Jaguars Entrenched at the bottom of this division. They last had a winning record in 2007, and last won this division in 1999. With Blaine Gabbert at the helm, I would pick up their running backs, and opposing defenses, if you've got a fantasy football team.
Denver Broncos It's Super Bowl or bust for these guys, though that defense is looking pretty sparse, and their cornerbacks rather trodden. 12 wins.
San Diego Chargers Many folks are picking KC for this second spot. Except for Jamaal Charles, I don't see it. I think Philip Rivers has one more season in him. And Antonio Gates is still playing, isn't he? That guy's as ageless as Tony Gonzalez.
Kansas City Chiefs So they got Bowe at receiver, and Charles at running back...Can't think if I've read about anyone else...I mean, people are predicting they'll finish second for a reason, right?
Oakland Raiders Everyone always gets injured on the Raiders. Or it just seems that way because they're so bad. Except for McFadden, who's always injured but is actually good. So it's to the bottom of the division where they belong.
Washington Redskins I always lose steam writing this thing by the time I get to the NFC. You want to root for RGIII. I want to root for RGIII. Let's put him at the top of this division and wish it so.
New York Giants Super Bowl champs two year ago. Haven't had a losing season since 2004. Can't think of anything they did to improve. But, enh, they should be good for a wild card.
Philadelphia Eagles Remember last year when a lot of folks predicted Philly would make the Super Bowl. Har har har! Well, I'm hoping Vick does good things still. Maybe he and Rivers will both put it together again this season. Can they sneak into the playoffs as a third place team in this division? Close, but no cigar.
Dallas Cowboys Still feel like an 8-8 team. But they don't feel like a basement dwelling team...Do I have the Redskins and Cowboys reversed here? Guess we'll have to see.
Green Bay Packers Oh, how I root for the Detroit Lions offense to be explosive. And for Cutler and Forte and the Bears to put a full season together. And for Adrian Peterson to keep running. But Green Bay is still the class of this division.
Chicago Bears Somehow managed to avoid the playoffs last year despite winning 10 games. Run, Forte, run! Do us all proud! It's just that competing for a wild card in the brutal NFC is going to be a feat. A feat they'll accomplish! No, j/k. But we here at DimeBrothers wish them all the best. Blame the Giants, not us.
Detroit Lions Feel like New Orleans from last year. All offense, no defense, and an 8-8 season.
Minnesota Vikings Uhhhhhhhhh, nothing to say about these guys that you don't already know. That's right, other than Peterson I don't know anything about these guys either. 6 wins.
Atlanta Falcons Underwhelmingly good. 1st or 2nd in this division since Matt Ryan came to town in 2008. Theyll continue dancing the dirty bird as division champs this year.
New Orleans Saints Hoping for great things as this team regains its head coach after a season-long suspension. But I don't think they regain all their mojo and just miss the playoffs. 9-7.
Carolina Panthers I love me some Cam Newton. But I still only see 8-8. Steve Smith is one of the greatest receivers of all time.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers I'm not feeling the Bucs. 5 or 6 victories gives them the bottom of this division.
San Francisco 49ers What'll they do, who'll they be, with Kaepernick at QB? I'm like everyone else who can only think of these running QBs and pray they don't get injured. I think 13 wins can be accomplished.
St. Louis Rams No, just kidding. I don't think St. Louis will finish second (see below). But Bradford seriously let us all down last year...and the year before that. But they can hang their helmets on almost finishing at .500 last year. Well, they better because I see more of the same for this year.
Cardinals At least they've got
Carson Palmer Fitzgerald. 6 wins.
Seattle Seahawks I'm still upset about their playoff win from 3 seasons ago. Remember? When they won 7 games and hosted a playoff game?!? I think they'll finish second in this division, but out of spite list them here at the bottom of the NFC West! And I believe they're up to something fishy in Seattle. In a couple years we'll find out they were up to no good during the previous and current years!
AFC 1st Round: Denver, Houston, New England, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, San Diego.
2nd Round: Denver, Houston, New England, Pittsburgh.
3rd Round: Denver, Houston.
NFC 1st Round: San Francisco, Atlanta, Green Bay, Washington, Seattle, New York.
2nd Round: San Francisco, Atlanta, Green Bay, Seattle.
3rd Round: Green Bay, Seattle.
Super Bowl: Denver over Green Bay.
Right off the bat I'm already wishing I put Chicago in the playoffs. And kept San Diego out. I'm never happy with these picks, but someone's gotta win these games. There are quite a few "gimmes" when it comes to the playoff picture. And this year San Fran and Seattle are garnering a lot of attention as Super Bowl representatives for the NFC. And they're tempting pics. I just can't help but think of QB injuries and the long season. Green Bay is so close to going back that I'm going with them out of the NFC. And I'm hoping the Broncos find enough of a defense throughout the season to push into the Super Bowl. I'm one-for-three so far with predicting Super Bowl winners, having predicted Green Bay (Green Bay won), then New Orleans (the Giants of New York), then Green Bay (Baltimore). Hopefully back to .500 after this season!