With the Dolphins in a transition mode with a new head coach and new rookie QB Ryan Tannehill, the near future looks especially rough. The Dolphins wide receivers are a bunch of no names, especially since Chad Johnson was released last week following his encounter with wife Evelyn Lozada. Hopefully Reggie Bush paired up with Daniel Thomas can take some of the pressure off of Tannehill and the receiving core. Offensive Coordinator Mike Sherman, who was the head coach at Texas A&M last season with Tannehill, will bring familiarity to the first round pick and should be a few steps ahead of the other rookie starting quarterbacks this year. The defense has play makers in defensive lineman Carlos Dansby and Cameron Wake, who bring a lot of pressure play after play. It will be interesting to see how this team progresses over the 16-week season. I am predicting a 4-12 season because there are just not enough weapons and too much youth to be competitive all year long.
The Jets have been making a lot of noise this offseason with the addition of Tim Tebow, but the depth chart is lacking playmakers. Santonio Holmes has been up and down each of the past two seasons, and with the loss of Plaxico Burress, who was a big red zone threat, I just don’t see where the scoring will come from. Dustin Keller has been Mark Sanchez’s security blanket the past few years, but injuries have caused him to lose a step. All the pressure will be on Sanchez, but it won’t be fair to blame him if this offense struggles, especially the way the offensive line has looked this pre-season. The defense will keep this team in a lot of games. With shut down corner Darrelle Revis, Antonio Cromartie and free agent pick up, Laron Landry at safety, the secondary looks strong. I am also looking for big things out of rookie defensive end, Quinton Coples out of North Carolina. He has all the skills needed to be a monster in this league, and reminds me of former Tar Heel, Julius Peppers.I feel the offense will struggle to score this year and predict a 7-9 season this year.
The Bills are my surprise team this year. They had a great first half of the season, but after the Fred Jackson injury, the offense went down hill. Fitzpatrick, Jackson, and Stevie Johnson must stay healthy if they want that same high powered offense from the first half of last season. I also see C.J. Spiller gaining a significant role this year especially on third downs and on screens plays where he can use his speed. The defense added De Mario Williams from the Texans and Mark Anderson from the Patriots in the off season. Combining those two with Kyle Williams and Marcell Dareus could produce the most dominant D-line in the NFL. I see the Bills becoming a top 10 defense this season. I am predicting a 10-6 record this year and to have a chance at the wild card.
The Patriots made it to the Super Bowl last year and I feel they might make it back this year, as well. Everyone says their defense doesn’t have what it takes, but somehow with smoke and mirrors, they made it to the big game last year. With Wes Welker, Rob Gronkowski, Aaron Hernandez, Deion Branch, and Brandon Lloyd as weapons for Tom Brady at the helm, this offense is so impressive they can outscore anyone. I doubt Gronk will surpass his 17 touchdowns of last year, but I see him and Hernandez dominating the middle of the field. The offensive line has looked very shaky this preseason, especially their young left tackle, Nate Solder who has the monster task of protecting Brady’s blindside. Each year the Patriots seem to have one glaring weakness but Bill Belichick always finds a way. I learned a long time ago to never doubt him. Look for young rookies Chandler Jones and Tim Hightower to have impact seasons, leading the team to go 13-3.
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