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Number 10
08-31-2008, 06:14 PM
NFC Preview will be up on Thursday

(Overall record) (Divisional Record) (Conference Record)

AFC EAST

1 - New England Patriots (12-4) (5-1) (8-4)

Last year was magical, something we may never see again in this lifetime. Do they have a shot at going after immortality again? With that offense, you cannot deny the possibility. However their schedule will end up being a lot tougher than it appears, especially down the stretch with back to back visits to the west coast against teams that I think will be tough to beat this year (Seattle, Oakland). Look, the Pats are still going to average 30 points a game in all likelihood and their front seven will still be good enough to physically overwhelm most of their opponents. But that secondary has the potential to not be just bad, but downright awful. I know Belichick is the master of hiding weaknesses in the secondary with his scheme but without a better pass rush, these guys are going to get burnt by teams like the Colts, Chargers, Jets, and Cardinals. I don’t like the depth on defense either, which is why I see them losing a few in the second half of the season as their veterans start to wear down.

Breakout Player: Laurence Maroney – RB

Brady will throw touchdowns whenever he wants to again, but many are overlooking how good Maroney was last season. With constant nickel and dime packages being thrown at Brady and the passing attack, Maroney could
have a field day.

2 - New York Jets (9-7) (4-2) (7-5)

Many forget the Jets were a 10 win team two years ago with Chad Pennington calling the shots. Injuries and a few tough breaks here and there led to their dismal 2007 season. Yes the QB play will be elevated to a level that Jets fans have not seen in quite awhile, but don’t look past the strength they added in the trenches. I really like Kris Jenkins in this scheme and he has fully accepted his role as a space eater. I like the front seven surrounding him and they have two defensive backs (Revis, Rhodes) that are on the cusp of Pro Bowl contention. Alan Faneca has been nothing short of spectacular from what I have seen thus far and the rest of the line has clearly been elevated since his arrival. It will take a few weeks for this offense to really get going, but once they do they’ll be tough to keep under 24 points on a weekly basis. Mangini is a fine, fine coach that now has some toys to play with rather than a bunch of role players.

Breakout Player: David Harris – LB

Remember this one, as I am as positive about this kid as anyone. I watched two game tapes this past week of Patrick Willis and Harris and there is little-to-no gap between them. Willis has a tad more quicks in the box but Harris is as good of an anticipator as I have seen. If Jenkins does the job at the nose all year, Harris will be close to 180 tackles this year.

3 - Buffalo Bills (9-7) (3-3) (7-5)

Do the Bills now have the talent to take them to the next level? They are a true grind-it-out squad that teams will not want to play late in the season. However I am not sold on the level of play Edwards and the receiving corps can give them to give that offense the proper balance. Evans, Parrish, Hardy are all big question marks in my eyes, guys that will impress one week and fail to exist the next. Marshawn Lynch is on the brink of greatness if he evolves this year, many don’t realize how good he was last season. The one thing that really bothers me on the defensive side of the ball is the lack of a true pass rusher, let alone a few. Nobody really scares me on that defensive line and when you play the kind of football they do, they need to have that somebody. Macus Stroud you say? I think I have seen enough to label him past his prime and no longer a big time threat. The secondary is also a bit thin for my liking unless the rookies are ready to step up, which is a question mark at best with every team. They’re close and they’re doing it the right way, but I just don’t see them being a big time contender just yet.

Breakout Player: Paul Posluszny – MLB

A favorite of mine in the draft a couple years back, I was disappointed to see Posluszny go down after an impressive start last year. I have seen the Bills twice this preseason and he looks better than he ever did in college and to think he is at a much higher level than the Big 10, Bills fans have to be encouraged that they are going to have a big time talent in the middle of that defense for a long time.

4 - Miami Dolphins (4-12) (0-6) (2-10)

Miami was just a mess last year from top to bottom. It’s amazing how good Bill Parcells is at this job of rebuilding though, as I look at this team on paper and have to think they will win a few games and be competitive in many others. He knows how to do it; get strong in the trenches on both sides of the ball and support the existing strengths the team already has. While they are far away from being considered a strong offense, the tools for a strong running attack and playaction passing game are there. The duo of Ricky Williams and Ronnie Brown could end up being one of the best tandems in the league if Brown is fully recovered. Pennington’s strength as a QB is playaction, accuracy based passes and he’ll get plenty of opportunity for that. Defensively, this may be the worst secondary in the league and without a strong pass rush, it will be exposed all season long. They have a schedule full of potent passing attacks and it may be too much for the offense to come back on more often than not.

Breakout Player: Ted Ginn Jr. – WR

I felt like Miami fans did not give Ginn a fair shot last year with the whole passing on Brady Quinn with the 9th overall selection in 2007. I’m still not sure that they’re over it, but while they continue to wonder “what if?” Ginn has been evolving into a fine WR and even better return specialist. I have noticed an extra hop in his step this preseason and I have thought all along that once he gained confidence in the NFL, he would then show Miami fans what he is capable of.

Division Offensive MVP: Tom Brady – Patriots
Division Defensive MVP: Adalius Thomas - Patriots

AFC NORTH

1 - Pittsburgh Steelers (10-6) (3-3) (8-4)

I think the Steelers will be one of those teams that ends up being a lot better than their record indicates. Sure, 10 wins will earn respect in the eyes of many but I think they are going to be right up there with the Colts and Pats in terms of overall quality. However a downright brutal schedule will prevent them from a shot at homefield advantage in the playoffs and a coast into January. Despite the tough schedule, the Pittsburgh defense is downright nasty. They will have a top notch run defense unit with as deep a front seven unit as I can find. The only concern is the health of Casey Hampton and Troy Polamalu, the two most important pieces of that defense. Offensively, I think the Steelers are about to break out. Despite what many believe here, I think the world of Big Ben. With Holmes about to hit that next level from good WR to great WR and stronger support around him, he is going to put up some big numbers. The RB duo was vastly upgraded and I understand Mendenhall has had some growing pains early on, but he was my #1 rated back in the 2008 class and I am sticking to it. A few weeks into the season, those two are going to be rushing for 150-200 yards a week. Many are crying about the offensive line from top to bottom and while that unit is on shaky ground, it is not as bad as some make it out to be. They’re still going to be tough in the run game, they just need to improve their blitz handling and if that happens, Ben will turn out to be a top 3 QB this year.

Breakout Player: Heath Miller – TE

There is a ton of talk every year on who the best tight ends in the game are. You’ll hear names like Kellen Winslow, Antonio Gates, and Jason Witten in every discussion but Miller is often overlooked. He can out block any of the above and his hands are not far behind, if at all. Ben will look his way a bit more this season if the pass protection becomes an issue and he will be depended on more in the run game if I think the Steelers do what I think they will with the running game.

2 – Cleveland Browns (9-7) (5-1) (7-5)

The Browns are close, just not quite there yet. However I do have them one win away from a division title here as I think they match up very well with their NFC North foes. They have a very strong front seven that, if healthy, could end up being a top 10 unit against the run. Shaun Rogers is the X-Factor here because the linebackers behind him, especially D’Qwell Jackson, struggle to take on and shed blocks. If he starts to slack off, again, they will be in major trouble. So if they go 5-1 in the division, how do I have them winning only 9 games? They are up against a schedule full of very good passing attacks and their combination of pass rush and secondary is weak and unproven. Offensively they hit a peak last year, a peak I don’t think will be matched again this season. They’ll still be top half numbers wise, but I’m one of the few that is not sold on Derek Anderson and Donte Stallworth is somehow overrated every single preseason. The offensive line is nothing special and that being the case, Jamal Lewis will struggle to make a very big impact.

Breakout Player: Sean Jones – S

A player I compare Jones to was in the same exact boat at this time last year. A safety that many thought was good, but not top notch. Kerry Rhodes then went on to have a monster year, terrorizing all aspect of an opposing offense with his balanced skill set. Jones has that kind of ability and should be mentioned with the best safeties in the NFL.

3 – Cincinnati Bengals (7-9) (3-3) (6-6)

The Bengals are a really tough team to figure out. Part of me wanted to make them my sneak into the playoffs team, and part of me wanted to put them in the top 5 of the 2009 draft. Thus I opted for the middle as I think Cincinnati has the firepower and playmaking ability on both sides of the ball to win a few but at the same time lacks a true defense that can make a big stop. Carson Palmer is still regarded one of the best in the business despite no running game, no tight end, and an average offensive line. If any of those weaknesses are upgraded, imagine what he could be. Defensively the Bengals lost their three best players and replaced two of them with worthy players in Rivers and Odom. It’s going to be a lot of pressure on Palmer because this unit is going to give up a ton of points.

Breakout Player: Robert Geathers – DE

I know a quality defensive end when I see one, and Geathers is without a doubt going to put up big numbers this year. His talent alone could get him close to 10 sacks, add in the fact he has some weapons around him in the front seven and a pass rushing scheme that will be built around him, look for the north side of 12 sacks here.

4 – Baltimore Ravens (4-12) (1-5) (3-9)

If the Ravens had an easier schedule, I think they could end up near the .500 mark. But the NFC East and AFC South are the two toughest divisions in football, and that’s who they’re matched up against. The defense is still respectable even though some of their key spots are starting to get a little gray in the beard. Ray Lewis, Trevor Pryce, and Chris McCalister are near the end but not there yet. They can all anchor their own respective units whole playing at a high level. In addition to them, I think they have a top 5 defensive lineman in Haloti Ngata who is right up there with Haynesworth and a top five defensive back in Ed Reed who is on his own level when it comes to safeties. On top of all that, they have a great defensive attitude on the sidelines with Rex Ryan who remains one of the greatest minds in the game. Offensively though the Ravens are in shambles. They have mediocre talent at WR, a decent running game but dependent on an banged up back, and an offensive line in transition. Joe Flacco is bound to start by the middle of the season at the latest and without an ample amount of help around him, the Ravens are really going to struggle to score yet again. The lack of depth on defense is going to bite hard late in the year when the vets start to shut down.

Breakout Player: Antwan Barnes – LB

With some development under his belt, Barnes is ready to step in and be a key factor on this defense. He reminds me of Seattle stud Leroy Hill with his blitzing ability and potential to make plays all over the field. Ryan really knows how to use guys like Barnes and I don’t think he’ll want to take him off the field once he starts to see some serious time.

Divison Offensive MVP: Ben Roethlisberger – QB - Steelers
Division Defensive MVP: Sean Jones – S – Browns

AFC South

1 – Indianapolis Colts (10-6) (5-1) (8-4)

The days of the Colts threatening for a 14-15 win season are over. Marvin Harrison is clearly near the end and their offensive line is no longer a top notch unit. Peyton Manning is still on top of his game however I believe it will take a few weeks for him to get in his groove with his ailing knee. With that being the case, Joseph Addai really needs to be on top of his game as he will be depended upon much more in those first couple of games. Running behind a questionable line leads me to believe the Colts will struggle to put up points when you check out what defenses they will be up against (Bears, Vikings, Jaguars). A lot of pressure is going to be put on the Colts defense, which by the way has a few major question marks itself. Dwight Freeney’s situation is one to keep an eye on because the LisFranc injury has completely altered players in the past. However both Justin Tuck and Michael Strahan both completely recovered and did not lose a step. If he returns to form, that defense should continue to work it’s way up the ladder toward the Colts offense. I’d be a little worried by the lack of depth at linebacker however. The starters there are nothing to write home about but the quality really drops after that group. If injuries start to pile up there, the Colts defense could have a lot of trouble as the linebackers are depended upon to do a lot in that scheme. They’re still the best in the division but that margin is about to close.

Breakout Player: Tyjuan Hagler – LB

I only got to see Hagler at LB a few times last year and each time I did, I came away with the thought that he was the best LB the Colts had. Now, that may be by default but Hagler fits in perfectly with the Tampa 2 scheme and has the potential to be a big time playmaker. I love his style of play.

2 – Tennessee Titans (9-7) (4-2) (7-5)

Everybody views the Jaguars as the team that will give the Colts a run for their money in the AFC South. Don’t look past the Titans, as I think they’re going to make a serious for the division title. I underrated this team last year and from what I saw in the preseason, the Titans defense is going to be near the top across the board. In their first year without PacMan Jones, their secondary did not skip a beat despite the small amount of time for adjustment. Up front, the Titans have the recipe for a top notch unit and it all starts with the best defensive lineman in the game, Albert Haynesworth. He’ll be playing for a contract this year and any worries about his motor will be out the window which has really been his only weakness his entire career. Kyle Vanden Bosch is a tad overrated as a pass rusher because of Haynesworth but he is still one of the best when it comes to defending the run. Keith Bullock is as good of a playmaker and tackler as you can find in the NFL and he leads a unit full of overlooked, blue collar type ‘backers that consistently get the job done. Behind that defensive line, they have the makings of being a top 5 unit against the run. The thing that is holding this team back is no secret. Vince Young and the passing game sorely need to take their game to the next level. I don’t see the personnel there for it to happen this year but the running game has the potential to be top notch. Proper balance between Chris Johnson and Lendale White will give them a great tandem, the question will be if the O-line can match their level of play from last season.

Breakout Player: Cortland Finnegan – CB

While the front seven gets a good amount of pub for their ability to stuff the run, more credit needs to be given to this secondary, Finnegan in particular. He has the size and speed to defend anyone that lines up across from him and with the offense creating more leads, teams will try to pass the ball more on the Titans and it will create turnover opportunities for Finnegan.

3 – Jacksonville Jaguars (8-8) (1-5) (5-7)

Plain and simple, I don’t think the Jaguars are as good as their record indicated last year. Don’t get me wrong, they’re a tough team to beat that plays smashmouth football as good as any team in the league, but I feel they are missing a few components that luckily passed them by last year. Defensively, their line is in transition and their line has been the basis of their success on that side of the ball for quite some time. The upside of the Harvey-Groves duo is sky high, but to expect them to make a big impact early on is a little too risky. They will go through the inevitable growing pains that a lot of rookie pass rushers go through and I can’t count on them to make a big difference in that division. Behind them the Jaguars are solid, but unspectacular. I love Ingram and Durant, but Mike Peterson plays the most important spot of their scheme and he seems to have lost a lot of his speed and quickness. He just isn’t the same player he was a couple years back. The secondary will keep this defense afloat, as they have playmakers all over the place put together with solid cover backs. If the pass rush is better than I expect, these guys could end up forcing a ton of turnovers. Offensively I am not behind David Garrard the way that others are. He’s an accurate, smart passer but I don’t expect him to have the same kind of season now that opposing coaches have an ample amount of film to watch on him. His supporting cast in the passing game is still weak and I’ll be surprised to see Reggie Williams have the same year he did in 2007. The running game will still be tough and because of that they’ll be in the playoff race for the majority of the season, but I don’t think they can match some of the other on-the-bubble teams in the AFC.

Breakout Player: Khalif Barnes – LT

It took him awhile, but Barnes seemed to really click in the second half of the 2007 season. He has some of the quickest feet you’re going to find on a left tackle/s body and he has evolved into one of the game’s better pass protectors. If he can learn to stay with his blocks in the run game, expect to see his name in the discussion of Pro Bowl alternates.

4 – Houston Texans (7-9) (2-4)

The Texans are headed in the right direction as they finally have built a strong group of young players in the trenches on both sides of the ball. I love the duo of Mario Williams and Amobi Okoye, two ferocious pass rushers that can notch 25+ sacks between them for a long time while providing strong run defense. The days of watching a Texans QB getting absolutely creamed on a play to play basis appear to be over. Duane Brown still has a ways to go, but he’ll give the Texans better LT play than they have ever had. I am interested to see if Chris Spencer can bounce back from his serious back injury because I thought coming into the NFL, Spencer was destined to be a good one. Schuab still has some work to do in terms of his pocket awareness and release, but if he can stay on the field for a whole season, watch out. They have a lot of weapons in that offense that can pose a threat to many defenses. Their balance of speed and power in the backfield will rack up a good amount of yards in that zone blocking scheme, giving Kubiak plenty of balance to work with. The weak secondary will be the downfall of this squad from what I can see. Dunta Robinson has all but cemented the notion into the NFL public that he is not a legit #1 corner and there is nobody else in that secondary that appears ready for that playmaking role. The front seven will get the job done but a lack of depth at linebacker could hurt down the stretch. I expect the Texans to stay in contention until December rolls around, but they won’t be able to keep up with the best.

Breakout Player: Fred Bennett – CB

The physical tool set has always been there for the physical cover man and it looks like he will get the opportunity to cash in on his development. I like what I have seen out of him this preseason and he could end up in the starting lineup for good.

Divisional Offensive MVP: Reggie Wayne – WR – Colts
Divisional Defensive MVP: Keith Bullock – LB – Titans


AFC West

1 – San Diego Chargers (12-4) (5-1) (9-3)

The Chargers offense is without a doubt the best in the NFL, with players at key spots in the prime, or hitting the prime of their careers. No need to talk about Tomlinson, so I’ll get into what I expect out of the passing game. While I don’t like Rivers in an offense where he needs to throw the ball a lot, he is a perfect fit for this squad. Stay away from turnovers, take advantage of the mismatches provided by Gates, and kill teams for putting eight in the box. Rivers can do those three things exceptionally well and should be able to score as many points as any other offense in the league other than the Patriots. The injuries to Gates and Rivers to have me a little worried because those types can really linger. Defensively, the Chargers are absolutely stacked in the secondary and will be able to combat the best passing attacks in the league without a problem. I cannot wait to watch Cromartie vs. Moss week 6. The Merriman saga hurts big time, obviously, but AJ Smith drafts for depth as well as any GM in the league and I think they’ll be alright if he is limited. The issue I see is hard to fix and that is tackling. The Chargers are one of maybe four to six teams in the league that will lose a couple games this year solely because their defense misses way too many tackles. Home field advantage for the Chargers in January, could this be the year?

Breakout Player: Eric Weddle – S

In a secondary full of corners that can cover receivers one on one, Weddle will have a lot of freedom to take some chances. Combine that with his knack for the ball and I think he’ll end up with a good amount of pass breakups and interceptions.

2 – Oakland Raiders (9-7) (3-3) (6-6)

The Raiders finishing over .500 and second place in the division? Yup. I think the Raiders are going to be very competitive this season because their defense is loaded with talent across the board. There is not a doubt in my mind that the Hall-Asomugha duo at cornerback is going to free up that defense into an all out attack mode, and that could end up being their saving grace. And it’s not like there is a huge drop off after those two, as the Raiders are home to two of my favorite young linebackers in Kirk Morrison and Thomas Howard. Both of them have taken that bound up from young raw talents to proven, every down ‘backers that always need to be accounted for. Their defensive line is deeper than most think, but they lack a true pass rushing threat and because of that, Oakland won’t be able to come up with the big stops on a consistent basis. They’re headed in the right direction though. JaMarcus Russell is in that awkward stage for a QB that will end up losing the Raiders a couple games. It’s tempting to fall in love with his physical tools and label him a stud, but he decision making ability in the pocket need to be refined before I get behind him. The running game will be fun to watch with McFadden getting into the open field and Fargas pounding it in between the tackles. The offensive line has been atrocious for a years now but there was progress made last year and if they can keep that continuity going, their offense will be good enough to get them to the .500 mark.

Breakout Player: Thomas Howard – LB

Howard was a favorite of mine a couple years back when he was coming out of UTEP. Known for his ability to cover in the open field, Howard started to turn heads last year with how he played the run. He is a complete linebacker that could end up with 100+ tackles, 5+ INTs, and 5+ sacks on a year in, year out basis if used correctly.

3 – Denver Broncos (6-10) (3-3) (5-7)

The Broncos run defense last season was hard to watch. Their linemen couldn’t get off blocks, therefore there was no need to double any of them. Their linebackers couldn’t tackle in the open field and constantly took poor pursuit angles towards the ball. The secondary was the lone bright spot but even they minus John Lynch were missing too many tackles. Dewayne Robertson was an absolute beast the year before the Jets moved to a 3-4 scheme, which he simply did not fit into. I think a new place and his old scheme will allow him to get back to that disruptive force that he is capable of being. Sticking with improved from a year ago. Elvis Dumervil and Marcus Thomas are the key guys against the pass, they are capable of a combined 20 sacks if they are on top of their respective games. This is an important year for Jay Cutler, a guy that I have yet to buy into. We all know about the cannon of an arm he has and he has improved his touch on certain passes, but I don’t like his decision making, or lack thereof. He just seems to slow in his reads. The running game will give you what you expect. Production and consistency but there isn’t a back on that team that strikes fear into anybody. The ceiling for this team just isn’t there, not yet anyways.

Breakout Player – Marcus Thomas – DT

The ability Thomas has is overlooked by many because of the shaky start he has gotten off to. Defensive tackle is not an easy position to transition into the NFL and you have to be patient with the guys that have the talent Thomas possesses. With a legit player next to him and the evolving Dumervil on the outside, expect Thomas to cash in on all of the one on one matchups he’ll be up against.

4 –Kansas City Chiefs (3-13) (1-5) (2-10)

Growing pains, growing pains, growing pains. Get used to that term when you talk about the Chiefs because they are young all over the place. It’s unfortunate because they have two players in Tony Gonzalez and Larry Johnson that are top notch talents at their respective positions. The Chiefs are going to find out who does and does not have what it takes to be a part of their long term plan this season. I liked Croyle coming out of Alabama as a kid to take a chance on outside of the 1st round, but I have to be honest in saying that he hasn’t sold me he can be a starter in this league. He’s got the arm, but a long release and an inability to take that step up mentally might kill him in the end. Larry Johnson is still going to get his yards despite a shaky offensive line because his game is built on pushing the pile forward and making people miss. I wish Dwayne Bowe had a competent target across from him because he is the only threat in the passing game, thus he is constantly doubled. Defensively the Chiefs have promise to keep some scores and low and the games interesting. I love their linebackers and how they use each other’s strengths and weaknesses to their advantage. The secondary is going to rely on unproven corners and that’s never a good thing when the pass rush is mediocre. They have a schedule that will allow them to win a few games but make no mistake about, the Chiefs have the worst team in terms of overall talent.

Breakout Player: Derrick Johnson – LB

I think you can agree with me that Johnson has not exactly fulfilled expectations since being a 1st round pick. Now that he is being used correctly as a downhill, attacking player he should end up making a big time impact.

Divisional Offensive MVP: LaDainian Tomlinson – RB – Chargers
Divisional Defensive MVP: Nnamdi Asomugha – CB – Raiders

PLAYOFFS

Wild Card

Browns @ Steelers – Steelers
Titans @ Colts – Colts

Divisional

Colts @ Chargers – Colts
Steelers @ Patriots – Patriots

AFC Championship

Colts @ Patriots – Patriots

AWARDS

AFC MVP – Ben Roethlisberger – QB – Steelers
AFC Defensive Player of the Year – Nnamdi Asomugha – Raiders
AFC Rookie of the Year – Jerod Mayo – LB - Patriots
AFC Coach of the Year - Tony Dungy - Colts

PalmerToCJ
08-31-2008, 06:27 PM
haha awesome review of the Bengals... I completely agree. I honestly have no idea what to expect, I don't think anyone else does either. Nothing will surprise me.

I will say, I don't think any AFCN team wins 10 games. Our division is not as good as it once was and has a tough schedule (on paper anyway).

Flyboy
08-31-2008, 06:35 PM
Much props to you for writing that up, Number 10.

vidae
08-31-2008, 06:43 PM
Decent review of the Chiefs. A lot of the problems Croyle has faced while a starter has been because we had a non existant running game due to LJ being injured and the offensive line has deteriorated the last few years.

I think 3-13 is a fair assessment though. We're going to go as far as offensive line will allow. We're about to find out how far that is. :)

Number 10
08-31-2008, 07:19 PM
Decent review of the Chiefs. A lot of the problems Croyle has faced while a starter has been because we had a non existant running game due to LJ being injured and the offensive line has deteriorated the last few years.

I think 3-13 is a fair assessment though. We're going to go as far as offensive line will allow. We're about to find out how far that is. :)

I would have gone into greater depth is I had the time. I just read what I wrote about Croyle, and I don't want anyone to misunderstand my view.

He has the tools, he has the mindset....but I don't see the "it" factor in him. He is not a guy that I think can bring a team downfield in the last 2 minutes, running game or no running game. I think he can be a guy that will get you to the playoffs on a somewhat consistent basis, but he'll need a lot more talent around him if they're gonna be a contender.

RaiderNation
08-31-2008, 08:05 PM
9-7 for Oakland would be great. If Russell can be consistant and if Walker can be a decent #1, we should be .500. Our defence will be top 10 IMO. We will stack the line and make them throw into Aso and Hall. Plus with McFadden, Fargas AND Bush we should have a good running game. Even though 9-7 is the highest record we can get this year, I think 7-9 will be our record

RoyHall#1
08-31-2008, 08:08 PM
You are definitely not one of the "few" that aren't sold on Derek Anderson. No one thinks he'll be good this year from what I've heard. Nice write-up though.

Geo
08-31-2008, 08:15 PM
I think we went from Anderson being overrated to now being a little dissed, lol.

Xonraider
08-31-2008, 08:19 PM
Love it for Oakland but..

''but they lack a true pass rushing threat and because of that, Oakland won’t be able to come up with the big stops on a consistent basis.''

Derrick Burgess bro...

Number 10
08-31-2008, 08:36 PM
Love it for Oakland but..

''but they lack a true pass rushing threat and because of that, Oakland won’t be able to come up with the big stops on a consistent basis.''

Derrick Burgess bro...

Burgess got the attention last year from opposing offenses after his big 2006, and look what happened. I put the eyeball on him last year, nothing special about him.

tylerb929
08-31-2008, 08:54 PM
Breakout Player: Tyjuan Hagler – LB


He's on the PUP list.

Number 10
08-31-2008, 09:51 PM
He's on the PUP list.

Thats why they play 16 games!

Xonraider
08-31-2008, 10:38 PM
Burgess got the attention last year from opposing offenses after his big 2006, and look what happened. I put the eyeball on him last year, nothing special about him.

He had 8 sacks in 14 games.. and Chris Clemons had 8 too. I mean, Burgess got a lot more attention and was chipped by fullbacks and tightends often. I think he will be effective this season with a healthy Tommy Kelly.

kalbears13
08-31-2008, 11:12 PM
The Browns' O-Line is nothing special??? But other than that, it looks like you put in a lot of work. nice.

7-11
08-31-2008, 11:54 PM
He's on the PUP list.

I really don't think Hagler is that special, honestly could see him pushed out of the starting lineup by Clint Session or Philip Wheeler before the season is out

comahan
08-31-2008, 11:54 PM
~ Spencer is long gone. He went to the Panthers, and they cut him too.

~ Dunta is a #1 CB. I honestly have no idea where or why you think he isnt? That seemed kind of out of place and random to me. Hes always been great for us. It has consistently been the other corners that blow it. Hes not Champ Bailey or anything, but he is a very solid #1 CB imo.

~ Bennett was tremendous last year and locked up a starting spot a loooong time ago with his great play a season ago. Aside from obviously Mario and DeMeco, Bennett was our best player on Defense last year. If this post was done a year ago, youd be right.

~ But yes, our safeties and corners behind Dunta(PUP), and Bennett suck. Although Molden looks good, he wont help right away. Jacque Reeves and DeMarcus Faggins shouldnt be in the league.

draftguru151
09-01-2008, 12:02 AM
I'd say a good amount of your breakout players already broke out, especially Fred Bennett.

Dam8610
09-01-2008, 03:10 AM
At 10-6, Tony Dungy wins coach of the year for the Colts, and a player who is going to miss the first 6 weeks of the season is going to breakout? Those just don't make any sense to me whatsoever.

Bucs147
09-01-2008, 07:04 AM
The Browns easily have a top-5 O-Line, how can you say that their line is nothing special ?

And I just don't see how Dungy can win the Coach of the Year Award if the Colts finish the season with a 10-6 record... If the Raiders win 9 games during the next season, Lane Kiffin will probably be the Coach of the Year.

Shane P. Hallam
09-01-2008, 07:19 AM
When is the last time all four AFC divisions had the same winners as the year before?

Hmmm, that has never happened!

Gay Ork Wang
09-01-2008, 07:25 AM
When is the last time all four AFC divisions had the same winners as the year before?

Hmmm, that has never happened!
Thats what i was thinking, not a lot of surprises.

Number 10
09-01-2008, 08:19 AM
The Browns' O-Line is nothing special??? But other than that, it looks like you put in a lot of work. nice.

I think Fraley is done to be honest. In the two games I saw of theirs this preseason, he looked downright awful. Eric Steinbech to me is one of the most overrated guards in the league, he is bull rushed into the backfield way too easily. It's a good O-line, top 10 in the league, but it's nothing special.

Number 10
09-01-2008, 08:24 AM
At 10-6, Tony Dungy wins coach of the year for the Colts, and a player who is going to miss the first 6 weeks of the season is going to breakout? Those just don't make any sense to me whatsoever.

The Colts are in a tough situation this year, as their core is banged up before the season.

Freeney, Sanders, Manning, Saturday...and who knows about Harrison. And this is all before the season. If he wins the division this year, regardless of record, I think he deserves big time props.

Number 10
09-01-2008, 08:29 AM
The Browns easily have a top-5 O-Line, how can you say that their line is nothing special ?

And I just don't see how Dungy can win the Coach of the Year Award if the Colts finish the season with a 10-6 record... If the Raiders win 9 games during the next season, Lane Kiffin will probably be the Coach of the Year.

I'm taking the Vikings, Giants, Patriots, Cowboys, Panthers, and Titans lines before the Browns.

Gay Ork Wang
09-01-2008, 08:30 AM
Vikings Giants and Cowboys okay, but Panthers and Titans?

Number 10
09-01-2008, 08:31 AM
In terms of the standings being similar to last year, I think the AFC is a lot easier to predict than the NFC. It is a stronger conference but not necessarily as competitive.

Number 10
09-01-2008, 08:35 AM
Vikings Giants and Cowboys okay, but Panthers and Titans?

If Otah is as good as I think he will be, that Panthers O-liine will dominate this year, you watch. Titans are consistently a good running team even though their talent at RB is medicore. They have the best LT in the game that you haven't heard of.

Another line you could make a case for is in Jacksonville, although they are neck and neck with the Browns.

Shane P. Hallam
09-01-2008, 08:41 AM
In terms of the standings being similar to last year, I think the AFC is a lot easier to predict than the NFC. It is a stronger conference but not necessarily as competitive.

I'm just saying, it has NEVER happened, lol. I don't think this changes that.


Anyway, I appreciate the effort. Never easy to make a post like this, and for better or worse, it improves the forum. I think you just need tuned up on a few of the teams.

Number 10
09-01-2008, 08:50 AM
I'm just saying, it has NEVER happened, lol. I don't think this changes that.


Anyway, I appreciate the effort. Never easy to make a post like this, and for better or worse, it improves the forum. I think you just need tuned up on a few of the teams.

While I admit I am much more in tune with the NFC, I think these predictions are going to be pretty accurate. The East and West are both going to be no competition, and I don't think the on the bubble teams in the other division are capable of taking that next step up the ladder.

Shane P. Hallam
09-01-2008, 08:58 AM
While I admit I am much more in tune with the NFC, I think these predictions are going to be pretty accurate. The East and West are both going to be no competition, and I don't think the on the bubble teams in the other division are capable of taking that next step up the ladder.

I wouldn't go that far. The West could definitely be a competition, and the South has some good teams. The North could go any way. It will be interesting.

Dam8610
09-01-2008, 11:50 AM
The Colts are in a tough situation this year, as their core is banged up before the season.

Freeney, Sanders, Manning, Saturday...and who knows about Harrison. And this is all before the season. If he wins the division this year, regardless of record, I think he deserves big time props.

Freeney, Sanders, and Harrison all participated in preseason, and all looked just fine. Manning didn't participate, but he has been practicing for the last 2 weeks, and he threw the tree to Marvin and Reggie prior to the Bengals game, so I wouldn't be shocked if he's completely ready to go when the Bears come into town. The OL is the largest question mark for the team since Saturday will be out for 6 weeks, but the Colts won a few games last year with suspect OL play, and they drafted 3 centers in the past draft, so they've already worked a few guys at the position and determined the best backup option. I think quite a few people are overestimating the injury situation the Colts are dealing with, but that's okay, under the radar is the best way to go.

TimD
09-01-2008, 12:44 PM
Harris already broke out. A breakout player is someone who has been average, underachieving, or quietly producing all of a sudden putting up big numbers, making a big impact, and grabbing attention. Harris already did the latter 3. Some options for a possible breakout player for the Jets: Justin Miller CB, Brad Smith WR, and maybe one of the 2 FS (Elam or Smith)

Number 10
09-01-2008, 01:02 PM
Harris already broke out. A breakout player is someone who has been average, underachieving, or quietly producing all of a sudden putting up big numbers, making a big impact, and grabbing attention. Harris already did the latter 3. Some options for a possible breakout player for the Jets: Justin Miller CB, Brad Smith WR, and maybe one of the 2 FS (Elam or Smith)

Few people outside of New York know about Harris. By season's end, he is going to be mentioned in the same sentence as Willis and Tatupu.

Shane P. Hallam
09-01-2008, 01:36 PM
He's already in the same sentence as Willis in most circles. Look at those stats last year, hot damn.

LonghornsLegend
09-01-2008, 01:58 PM
Few people outside of New York know about Harris. By season's end, he is going to be mentioned in the same sentence as Willis and Tatupu.

I'm pretty sure he's know well outside of New York, especially with IDP leagues taking over in fantasy any time a guy starts half the season and racks up 120+ tackles he is well known, especially with Vilma being traded...Either way when I talk about break out players, if I was pegging a MLB, I wouldn't choose a guy who already had 120 tackles, thats like picking Brandon Marshall to break out at WR this year.

bigbluedefense
09-01-2008, 04:25 PM
Harris is a stud. Ill take it one step further, and say that he's a BETTER 3-4 ILB than Willis is.


However, Willis would be electric and better in a 4-3 defense.

Willis could be the next Ray Lewis in a 4-3.

bored of education
09-02-2008, 10:35 AM
yay 3-13 for KC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

STAFFORD IS COMMING TO TOWN!

619
09-02-2008, 10:42 AM
Awesome write-up number 10. Fairly accurate analysis of the Raiders. Howard is also a favorite of mine and those expectations of him are not as farfetched as they may appear on paper. Overall solid job .

MetSox17
09-02-2008, 10:45 AM
Few people outside of New York know about Harris. By season's end, he is going to be mentioned in the same sentence as Willis and Tatupu.

Yeah man, everyone knows about David Harris already. He's not a diamond in the rough anymore.

How about that class of Willis, Beaston and Harris. That's sick.

Smooth Criminal
09-02-2008, 10:51 AM
Great write up. I agree with most of everything you put down here.

And David Harris is an absolute stud. I wanted the Steelers to draft him so badly. Hes a perfect fit for a 3-4 ILB.

Flyboy
09-02-2008, 11:38 AM
Wait. Is Dunta back from his injury?

Hines
09-02-2008, 11:41 AM
Wait. Is Dunta back from his injury?

NO, I think he is out till Week 8? Could be wrong though. I do know he is starting out on the PUP list.

Flyboy
09-02-2008, 12:00 PM
Ah, okay. Thanks for the info.

Young Legend
09-02-2008, 12:04 PM
Burgess got the attention last year from opposing offenses after his big 2006, and look what happened. I put the eyeball on him last year, nothing special about him.

Thats why Oakland is going to move him around more this season your not gonna see him lined up on the LE every down.

Diehard
09-02-2008, 12:38 PM
3 – Denver Broncos (6-10) (3-3) (5-7)

So, you feel the weakest link (interior DL) has improved, yet you're projecting fewer wins than last year despite what appears to be a relatively soft schedule?

Breaker
09-02-2008, 12:46 PM
NO, I think he is out till Week 8? Could be wrong though. I do know he is starting out on the PUP list.

Yea, that is correct. He's coming back after the bye week which is on the 8th week, the Texans will be facing MIN that week.

Right now he is physically ready to play, but mentally he is still not there yet, thus having coaches put him on PUP. He's cutting, back-pedalling, running with a weight sled and doing CB drills in practices, so physically there no question he's back.

islandboy843
09-02-2008, 07:43 PM
Thats a lot of 9-7 teams.

i guess the NFC is gonna have like 4 winning teams.

Smooth Criminal
09-02-2008, 07:49 PM
Thats a lot of 9-7 teams.

i guess the NFC is gonna have like 4 winning teams.

He actually has the afc finishing exactly at .500. Which would mean the NFC would have as many wins as the AFC.