2005 NFL Predictions

The G Man
09-08-2005, 07:27 AM
AFC
East
N England 11-5
NY Jets 9-7
Buffalo 6-10
Miami 3-13

North
Baltimore 10-6
Pittsburgh 9-7
Cincinnati 8-8
Cleveland 3-13

South
Indianapolis 12-4
Jacksonville 10-6 *
Houston 7-9
Tennessee 6-10

West
Denver 11- 5
KC 10- 6 *
San Diego 8- 8
Oakland 7- 9

NFC
East
Philadelphia 12-4
Dallas 9-7 *
NY Giants 8-8
Washington 5-11

North
Minnesota 10-6
Green Bay 9-7
Detroit 7-9
Chicago 3-13

South
Carolina 11-5
Atlanta 9-7 *
Tampa 8-8
N. Orleans 5-11

West
St. Louis 10-6
Seattle 9-7
Arizona 8-8
SF 49'ers 3-13

AFC Championship - Indianapolis over New England
NFC Championship - Philadelphia over Carolina
Super Bowl XL - Indianapolis over Philadelphia

AFC MVP - Peyton Manning
NFC MVP - Julius Peppers

Rick Middleton
09-08-2005, 07:37 AM
Boo for picking the Colts to beat the Pats in the playoffs. We all know that ain't going to happen :teach:

The G Man
09-08-2005, 07:42 AM
Boo for picking the Colts to beat the Pats in the playoffs. We all know that ain't going to happen :teach:
Well, I've got the Colts as having home field in the AFC this year, so do the math ...

Hyped
09-08-2005, 08:10 AM
AFC
East
N England 11-5
NY Jets 8-8
Buffalo 7-9
Miami 4-12

North
Baltimore 11-5
Cincinatti 9-7*
Pittsburgh 8-8
Cleveland 2-14

South
Indianapolis 14-2
Jacksonville 10-6*
Houston 7-9
Tennessee 5-11

West
San Diego 10-6
Denver 9-7
Kansas City 9-7
Oakland 7-9

NFC
East
Philadelphia 12-4
Dallas 10-6*
Washington 6-10
NY Giants 5-11


North
Minnesota 11-5
Detroit 9-7
Green Bay 7-9
Chicago 3-13

South
Atlanta 11-5
Carolina 10-6*
Tampa Bay 7-9
New Orleans 6-10

West
St. Louis 10-6
Seattle 9-7
Arizona 7-9
SF 49'ers 2-14

AFC Championship - Indianapolis over Baltimore
NFC Championship - Minnesota over Philadelphia
Super Bowl XL - Indianapolis over Minnesota

AFC MVP - Peyton Manning
NFC MVP - Daunte Culpepper

JCD
09-08-2005, 10:12 AM
AFC East
Jets 11-5- I think Pennington's shoulder looks good. Coles gives them a more diverse receiver than Moss while Jolley (if/when he gets his act together) gives them an underneath threat for the savvy Pennington to take advantage of. Their defense was solid last year and should benefit from the leadership of Law. Only hole is their safeties.


Pats 10-6*- I get the feeling that Bellichick's ego has gotten the better of him. Too much transition too fast. When the key to your offensive and defensive success has been in the scheme and planning, losing BOTH your coordinator's is crushing. Pats won more games on the defensive side of the ball than the offensive side, they lost a lot of personnel on defense and several of the key ones returning are in their final years. Pats will be competitive, but I don't see them as a dominant team.

Bills 8-8- A stout defense and good running game can take you far, but only so far. Losman is the limiting factor and they need to find somebody to play DT opposite Adams. The concerns in the passing game are magnified by the worst LT situation in all of football.

Dolphins 6-10- A stout defense and a good running game again. I like Brown and think Saban is brining in the right personnel to pull off his scheme, but the bottom line is that he is a rookie head coach with a team in transition void of leadership on offense. Defense will be tough, but it too is in transition splitting the difference between a 3-4 and a 4-3 set without enough players to work either system to full effect.

AFC North
Ravens 10-6- Flat out, Boller sucks. The team is STACKED around him though, so even a bottom-5 QB can only screw them up so much. Phenominal defensive talent (though thin at DT), great offensive line, great RBs, deep WRs plus Heap. Give them a quality QB and this is a Super Bowl team. They won't go anywhere with Boller.

Bengals 9-7- Palmer looks like he can lead this offense to a top-5 finish. Good line, great WRs, great RBs and an emerging stud at QB. Too bad the defense looks terrible. This is a 1-dimensional team, but might be enough to sneak them into a WC spot.

Steelers 8-8- I think they overachieved last year and look to return to earth HARD this year. From mid-season last year until now, Rothlisberger keeps on getting worse. He was frightfully terrible this pre-season, delving down to Boller territory. Add in a questionable right side of the line, questionable depth at receiver, injury group of RBs and questionable coaching calls (drafted Miller, making him into a blocker?) and you have a recipe for a disasterous offense. Defense will keep them competitive, but even the defense is based off more scheme than talent. Their secondary is very vulnerable to savvy passers and The Jaw refuses to give the youngsters a crack at starting.

Browns 3-13- Where to start? Only thing the team has going for it is some enthusiasm. To be honest, they looked better in pre-season than I would have expected. Then again, so did the Redskins under Spurrier and the Redskins at least had SOME legit talent. There isn't one position of strength on the entire roster.

AFC South

Colts 13-3- Simon may be one dimensional, but he is good at that dimension and gives them a fierce pass rush. With the offense they have, they can force teams into shoot-outs, which plays to their small-but-fast D-line and playmaking DBs. I think this is the team to beat in the NFL.

Texans 9-7- I think this is finally the year they break through. Carr looks solid, albeit with some hiccup performances now and then. They have an under-rated collection of talent on offense, if the line can come together they can be a potent unit. Defense seems to be in constant transition, but has a number of playmakers to work with. If one of their young OLBs can emerge as a legit edge rusher, they will have all the pieces they need to be good. If the cards fall right, they could make a push for a WC.

Jags 8-8- I was high on them, until they took a mulligan in the off-season. Jones is a downgrade from Edwards for this season. Perhaps a notable one as at least Edwards was a savvy possession guy who gave Leftwich a 3rd down option. Taylor is already hurt and they didn't upgrade their depth behind him. Offense is going to struggle. Defense looks good and will keep them in games, but Leftwich is a pocket passer so is limited by the weapons he is given to work with. In this case, he has a butter knife and a couple of cap guns.

Titans 4-12- McNair deserves better than this. Team looks terrible. Henry could help, if he could ever get on the field. Brown is an injury waiting to happen and the receiver corps looks miserable. Hopefully somebody emerges at RT or it will be a short season for McNair. And that is the good side of the ball. Defense is a trainwreck.

AFC West
10-6 Chiefs- When Green was 100%, I thought this was a Super Bowl team. Him being hurt, even for a few games, will cost them a couple games. WRs are still weak as hell, but Gonzo and that running game compensate. More importantly, the defense actually has the ability to finish out of the bottom-5 for a change. As long as the offense holds steady, a respectable showing from the defense will get them far into the post-season.

9-7 Chargers- I think they played over their heads last year. Offense needs Brees to show last year wasn't a fluke. Defense should be solid. If they get some youngsters to break through, it could be great. Overall, I just am not quite sold that the Chargers are for real.

7-9 Broncos. I think this team is quietly in turmoil. Too many old and injured players on defense, too many inconsistent and old players on offense. Having arguably the worst draft in the league certainly didn't help their cause. Nor did rebuilding their defensive line with table scraps tossed off from the Browns. Any offense led by Plummer is a question mark.

6-10 Raiders. For all the talent they added on offense, they still can't get past their horrific defense. Collins is a marginal starter, but is in a system that plays to his strengths. They will put up mongo-offensive numbers. But their defense can give the points up even faster.

NFC East

Eagles 11-5- Reid will have his work cut out for him as the teams looks to be on the verge of a feud. Owens is pissed off and fightign with the world. Westbrook is pissed off and wants a new contract. Hollis Thomas forgot that he is a marginal player and wants a new contract. Tra Thomas hired Rosenhaus, so just wait for the fireworks to start. Just seems like a lot of pissed off players under one roof. With a situaiton like that boiling, the team may come to regret letting so many of their locker-room leaders walk off (Hugh Douglas, Jon Ritchie, Vincent). McNabb and Dawkins could use the help. Eagles are still a potent team, I just think off-the-field issues will hurt their performance. Especially when they have failed to live up to expectations 4-years running. Now is the time they need to gel and take the next step, not start stabbing each other in the back. They lost more talent on both sides of the ball than they gained, making matters even worse.

Redskins 7-9- Portis and the defense will keep them competitive, Ramsey (in a lame-duck situation) and bad receivers put a limit on their offensive success. Lack of talent on the defensive line hurts them on that side.

Cowboys 7-9- I think Parcells has lost it. The 3-4 is a poor fit for the talent he had, he is forcing it into place and is building it with rookies. His best two vet defensive linemen have no place in a 3-4 (Glover and Ellis). The offense is built around players whose last teams were happy to see them go, so you have to question just how potent it can be.

Giants 6-10- Eli is learning on the job. Is he the real deal or just the brother of the real deal? New York will find out. The Giants gave him more toys to play with this year, but he still has only a so-so supporting cast.

NFC North

Vikings 11-5- Vikes offense still looks quite potent, built around the skills of Culpepper and flooding the field with options. Success will depend on the emergence of the defense. LBs remain the biggest question mark, but the secodnary and defensive line look outstanding. As long as the LBs are even just marginal, the defense can finish in the top-15.

Packers 8-8- Packers look freakishly one dimensional. Defense looks flat-out terrible. Bates may be a great coordinator, but he can't make chicken salad from chicken ****. If Bates gets them out of the bottom-5, he is a miracle worker. Wahle and Rivera are already missed, but guards are the easier position on the line to replace (though both at once makes it worse).

Lions 7-9- It is Harrington's show and already they are ringing the gong. Harrington didn't show anything in the pre-season to make you think this is the year. His sporadic play and a weak RT situation limit the offense. Defense is solid, though needs to play more consitently. Stuffing teams on 1st and 2nd down means jack when you ease off and let them convert on 3rd.

Bears 6-10- Bears will be better than people think, but that isn't saying much. Worst QB situation in the league makes them a 1-dimensional running team. That and a stout defense can make you competitive. If the Bears get any degree of quality play under center, they can push for .500. Bears have the talent to be a top-10 defense, have depth and quality at RB and a very good offensive line. That is enough to be competitive in this league.

NFC South
Panthers 11-5- Fox is arguably the best coach on 'the next' generation IMO. Panthers have a great all-around team and look to be the team to beat in the NFC. Delhomme is an efficient QB and has some weapons around him. If they can get quality play out of whoever is healthy enough to play at RB that week, they will be an effective unit. The defense, even with some questions at LB, looks to be one of the best in the league.

Falcons 9-7- Atlanta has trouble sustaining success. Vick already struggles as a passing QB. Giving him an abysmal set of receivers to work with won't help him get any better. While this may be one of the best rushing teams in the league, their passing game is arguably the worst. Defense has a number of playmakers to build from and should keep them in most games, but if they have to play from behind or are forced into shoot-outs, they are done.

Saints 6-10- The Saints never play as well as they look on paper. While they have the talent to be a top-10 offense, Brooks seems to find ways to derail it at the most inopportune times. The defense is a set of mismatches, fantastic defensive ends (one of the best trios in the league), hideous play at DT. Good pass defense, abysmal rushing defense. McKinnon gives them a bluecollar run-stuffer in the middle to help out, but the play of ManChild Sullivan will set the pace for the defense. Sullivan and Brooks level of play will determine the Saint's season. Being on the road for 16 games won't help.

Bucs 5-11- Gruden may be a good coach, but he is a terrible GM and left himself nothing to work with. Offense will overachieve, Gruden's units almost always do, but that isn't saying much. This is the worst offensive line in football and a QB notorious for collapsing under pressure. Defense remains steady, though seems to be in slow decay. Eventually, a new guard of players will have to step up. Rice, Barber and Brooks are in their golden years.

NFC West
Rams 10-6- Rams have quietly built up a good team. Nobody is talking about them yet, but perhaps they should. The offensive line woes look to be fixed, have a great deal of talent at WR, RB and Bulger is solid. Defense has some concerns on the line still, and the CBs look thin. LBs look notably improved. If Kennedy starts to live up to his pre-draft hype, they might be able to slide Lewis out to DE.

Seattle 8-8- Is this finally Holmgren's last year? Defense still looks terrible. They have the makings for a good secondary, but the front-7 are one of the worst groups in football. Offense should remain solid, if Warrick or Jurevicious can emerge as a legit possession receiver it will be potent.

Arizona 8-8- Green is slowly making progress in the desert. Defense was solid last year with a number of young talents on it. Hopefully the addition of some vet leaders will help them be more consistent. The offense hinges on the play of Warner. He has talent around him, can he use it? A weak interior line could cause him problems, Warner isn't exactly known for standing tall in the pocket.

Niners 3-13- Ug. Smith has a decent offensive line, but that is about it. Eric Johnson is an over-sized receiver who can't stay healthy while Barlow is a headcase whose ego exceeds his talent. Offense is going to master the art of the 3-and-out. Defense is transitioning to a 3-4 to make use of what little talent they have. They don't have the talent to field a good 4-3 unit either, so why not get as many of their best players on the field at one time? Adding a rookie head coach into this talent-deprived mess just makes it that much worse.

Rick Middleton
09-08-2005, 10:38 AM
Well, I've got the Colts as having home field in the AFC this year, so do the math ...
Boo I sez.

Boo!

Ar-too
09-08-2005, 11:28 AM
AFC
East
NY Jets 10-6
N England 9-7 *
Buffalo 8-8
Miami 2-14

North
Cincinnati 12-4 #
Baltimore 10-6 *
Pittsburgh 9-7
Cleveland 3-13

South
Indianapolis 14-2
Jacksonville 8-8
Houston 7-9
Tennessee 6-10

West
San Diego 10-6
KC 8-8
Oakland 7- 9
Denver 6-10



NFC
East
Philadelphia 13-3
Dallas 7-9
NY Giants 7-9
Washington 5-11

North
Minnesota 11-5
Green Bay 9-7 *
Detroit 7-9
Chicago 3-13

South
Carolina 11-5
Atlanta 10-6 *
Tampa 8-8
N. Orleans 7-9

West
Arizona 10-6
St. Louis 8-8
Seattle 8-8
SF 49'ers 3-13

AFC Championship - Indianapolis over Baltimore
NFC Championship - Philadelphia over Minnesota
Super Bowl XL - Philadelphia over Indianapolis

AFC MVP - Carson Palmer #
NFC MVP - Terrell Owens

# DISCLAIMER - This is a total homer pick and is dependent on the defense being in the middle of the road in the NFL. If the D is as horrible as it was the last two years, or if the Bengals lose a game to the Browns, then they're likely to end up at 8-8, just like the last 2 years.

EDIT: I want to qualify all of my picks by saying that if Bill Belichick can overcome this offseason and win ANOTHER Super Bowl, then we're probably looking at a UCLA-in-the-70s style dynasty for the next 8-10 years.

MLH
09-08-2005, 12:07 PM
AFC East
Bills 8-8- A stout defense and good running game can take you far, but only so far. Losman is the limiting factor and they need to find somebody to play DT opposite Adams. The concerns in the passing game are magnified by the worst LT situation in all of football.
Picking up where you left off last year?

Gandy has been extremely good in camp and preseason; he's not even the biggest question mark on our o-line. He's a smart player and I think he's greatly benefited from McNally's coaching, hopefully enough to turn his career around. That said, he'd be better suited to play guard.

I assume you don't know much about Ron Edwards, but he's a solid DT and Anderson can come in when needed. Most fans are extremely high on Edwards (some think he'll be better than Pat Williams). I'm not on board, but I don't think DT will be a big hole. He's a better pass rusher than Williams and that should help the Bills get at the quarterback even more, not that they really needed much help.

Obviously, Losman's the big question mark and that's why I'm not ready to make the same guarantees as last year. However, he's clearly skilled and in a perfect position to succeed. The defense is great and he's not going to have to win games by himself. He's got one of the leagues best RB's, two very good WR's with a dynamic rookie set to come back from injury soon, and a reliable TE. If he can avoid big mistakes at the wrong times the Bills will make the playoffs.

Ar-too
09-08-2005, 01:11 PM
Skip Bayless agrees with me about the Bengals, and actually goes a little further than I would...

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=bayless/050908&num=1
The defense is loaded...
:eek: :shakehead :biglaugh: :help: :confused:

Tuggy
09-08-2005, 01:15 PM
Skip Bayless agrees with me about the Bengals, and actually goes a little further than I would...

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=bayless/050908&num=1



Maybe he meant to say "I'm loaded" :D

But I do like the Bengals this year. They will be fun to watch.

JCD
09-08-2005, 01:22 PM
Gandy has been extremely good in camp and preseason; he's not even the biggest question mark on our o-line. He's a smart player and I think he's greatly benefited from McNally's coaching, hopefully enough to turn his career around. That said, he'd be better suited to play guard.

Sorry, but Gandy was a disgrace for the Bears and I very much doubt he transformed himself into a respectable linemen in the 6th months he was out of the league after the Bears found him such a liability that they cut him mid-season. Gandy sat the rest of the season unemployed until the Bills came calling. Name me a worse starting LT in the league.

I assume you don't know much about Ron Edwards, but he's a solid DT and Anderson can come in when needed. Most fans are extremely high on Edwards (some think he'll be better than Pat Williams). I'm not on board, but I don't think DT will be a big hole. He's a better pass rusher than Williams and that should help the Bills get at the quarterback even more, not that they really needed much help.

Ron Edwards did well as a rotational linemen, but coming in part time is quite different than being a full-time starter. Bills tried him as a starter a couple years ago opposite Edwards and he was a disappointment, forcing them to bring in Adams to replace him. Edwards looked good last year because he was used in the right role: as a situational player rotating in for 10-20 plays a game.

He is nowhere near the talent of Pat Williams. Don't kid yourself.

Obviously, Losman's the big question mark and that's why I'm not ready to make the same guarantees as last year. However, he's clearly skilled and in a perfect position to succeed. The defense is great and he's not going to have to win games by himself. He's got one of the leagues best RB's, two very good WR's with a dynamic rookie set to come back from injury soon, and a reliable TE. If he can avoid big mistakes at the wrong times the Bills will make the playoffs.

Doubt that. You are in a tough division and Losman has a poor pass protecting line in front of him (including the worst starting LT in the league). Losman wasn't a bluechip caliber QB propect. He is a good athlete, but so is Kyle Boller and Kordell Stewart. Surrounding a QB with talent puts them in a situation to succeed, but it is still up to the QB to do so. Losman, at the very best, is raw and will take time to adapt to the NFL speed and pressure.

Bills play in a tough division and have notable question marks. You Bill fans keep on telling us just how great they are, happens every summer. Adams and Williams are the best DTs in the league (but now Edwards is as good as Williams). Clement and Winfield are the best CBs in the league (but Vincent was an upgrade on Winfield). Every year we hear it, but I have yet to see the Bills live up to the hype. I underestimated their ability to reach .500 last year, but you guys keep on over-estimating their ability to make the post-season.

Ar-too
09-08-2005, 01:35 PM
Name me a worse starting LT in the league.

Ross Verba... oh, wait...

MLH
09-08-2005, 01:42 PM
Sorry, but Gandy was a disgrace for the Bears and I very much doubt he transformed himself into a respectable linemen in the 6th months he was out of the league after the Bears found him such a liability that they cut him mid-season. Gandy sat the rest of the season unemployed until the Bills came calling. Name me a worse starting LT in the league.

How many Bills preseason games and training camp sessions have you caught?

Ron Edwards did well as a rotational linemen, but coming in part time is quite different than being a full-time starter. Bills tried him as a starter a couple years ago opposite Edwards and he was a disappointment, forcing them to bring in Adams to replace him. Edwards looked good last year because he was used in the right role: as a situational player rotating in for 10-20 plays a game.

He is nowhere near the talent of Pat Williams. Don't kid yourself.

Well I guess I'm not kidding myself seeing as I said "I'm not on board...". The entire defense was a mess when the Bills tried him out as a starter, he's developed since. Pat Williams sat on the bench for a lot of plays last year, I don't think DT is a big issue.

Doubt that. You are in a tough division and Losman has a poor pass protecting line in front of him (including the worst starting LT in the league). Losman wasn't a bluechip caliber QB propect. He is a good athlete, but so is Kyle Boller and Kordell Stewart. Surrounding a QB with talent puts them in a situation to succeed, but it is still up to the QB to do so. Losman, at the very best, is raw and will take time to adapt to the NFL speed and pressure.

Clayton said Losman may have gone #1 overall in last year's draft. He's not only a good athlete, but he has an incredible arm, can throw on the run, and a tremendous work ethic. He'll make mistakes, but he has a defense that can bail him out. He has a pretty favorable schedule to get him used to the NFL.

Bills play in a tough division and have notable question marks. You Bill fans keep on telling us just how great they are, happens every summer. Adams and Williams are the best DTs in the league (but now Edwards is as good as Williams). Clement and Winfield are the best CBs in the league (but Vincent was an upgrade on Winfield). Every year we hear it, but I have yet to see the Bills live up to the hype. I underestimated their ability to reach .500 last year, but you guys keep on over-estimating their ability to make the post-season.

You gave me that line last year too, about how Bills fans hype the team every year. Just as I said last year, I wasn't among them. I wasn't predicting a Super Bowl victory after they started 2-0 two years ago. I never thought Winfield was anything more than he is (a solid CB and a great tackler, but hands of stone and no playmaking ability). I never said the Bills would definitely get to the playoffs last year, I said they would get 8+ wins. They did. Bledsoe wasn't going to get us to the playoffs. Even if this year is another near miss, the QB change is still going to make us better off in 2006.

Losman is too big of a question mark for me to say the Bills will definitely make the playoffs, but he adds another dynamic to the offense and has the tools and situation to do it. I'm sure you'll underestimate them again.

Tuggy
09-08-2005, 01:46 PM
AFC East:
New England
NY Jets *
Buffalo
Miami

AFC North:
Baltimore
Cincinnati
Pittsburgh
Cleveland

AFC South:
Indianapolis
Houston
Jacksonville
Tennesee

AFC West:
Kansas City
Denver *
San Deigo
Oakland

---------

NFC East:
Philadelphia
Washington * (Surprise team of the year, Gibbs finds some magic)
Dallas
NY Giants

NFC North
Minnesota
Detroit
Green Bay
Chicago

NFC South
Carolina
Atlanta *
Tampa Bay
New Orleans

NFC West
Seattle
St. Louis
Arizona
San Francisco

AFC Championship Game: Baltimore over New England
NFC Championship Game: Minnesota over Carolina

Superbowl XL : Baltimore over Minnesota

AFC Offensive MVP: Corey Dillon
AFC Defensive MVP: Ray Lewis

NFC Offensive MVP: Shaun Alexander
NFC Defensive MVP: Julius Peppers

Ar-too
09-08-2005, 01:50 PM
Losman is too big of a question mark for me to say the Bills will definitely make the playoffs, but he adds another dynamic to the offense and has the tools and situation to do it. I'm sure you'll underestimate them again.

So, wait... read his analysis again and tell me, what's your beef? :dunno:

Bills 8-8- A stout defense and good running game can take you far, but only so far. Losman is the limiting factor and they need to find somebody to play DT opposite Adams. The concerns in the passing game are magnified by the worst LT situation in all of football.

MLH
09-08-2005, 02:01 PM
So, wait... read his analysis again and tell me, what's your beef? :dunno:

Oh, I think they'll make the playoffs. It's just that this year there's a question mark where as last year it was obvious they weren't a 4 win team. I think they'll go 11-5 and JCD will underestimate them per usual. Last year I knew I wasn't going to be wrong, this year he may be right if Losman turns out to be a disaster.

Hockeyfan02
09-08-2005, 02:11 PM
AFC East:
Patriots 11-5: Too many losses over the season to not pick a bit of a downfall, but still the team to beat in this division
Jets 8-8: Not sold on them like some experts who have them winning the division
Bills 7-9: I think Losman will take time to become a solid QB. Team will struggle in 1st half.
Dolphins 3-13: Gus Ferrote/AJ Feely. These guys will lose games for them.

AFC North:
Ravens 11-5: They have everything they need to be a contender, but Boller is the big question mark. Loved their offseason.
Bengals 10-6*: My sleeper team. I think this is the year they get over the hump and in to the playoffs
Steelers 9-7: They need to get Staley or Bettis healthy. I think Big Ben will struggle and teams will exploit their secondary
Browns 3-13: Improved their offensive line, but not much else. I wonder when Frye will start.

AFC South:
Colts 12-4: Offense will be deadly again, defense improved with Simon signing. This SHOULD be their year
Jaguars 10-6*: Taylor has to stay healthy. Their defense will carry them to the playoffs.
Texans 7-9: One year away from the playoffs IMO.
Titans 4-12: Team could go either way, I see a huge drop off.

AFC West:
Chiefs 10-6: Defense improved just enough to get back to the playoffs.
Chargers 9-7: I think they overachieved but they should still be in the hunt for a playoff spot
Broncos 7-9: I think they are overrated every year. They'll probably be better than the 7-9 I'm predicting.
Raiders 6-10: Will be exciting to watch every week, won't translate to many wins.

AFC Championship: Colts over Ravens
AFC MVP: Peyton Manning

NFC East:
Eagles 13-3: Lost Simon, but have the depth to replace him. TO and Mcnabb will get along just fine.
Cowboys 7-9: Changes won't make them a playoff team
Redskins 5-11: Don't like their QB situation, Portis will have a better year.
Giants 5-11: Eli will be better, tean won't be much better.

NFC North:
Vikings 11-5: Loved their offseason, offense won't miss a beat without Moss. Defense improved a lot.
Lions 8-8: Harrington MUST improve for them to be a playoff team. No more excuses now.
Packers 6-10: Don't think Favre will carry them to the playoffs this year
Bears 5-11: I think Orton will struggle, offense won't score enough points to win games.

NFC South:
Panthers 11-5: If this team stays healthy, they will be very tough to beat.
Falcons 10-6*: Didn't lose anything significant, but they take a small step back.
Saints 6-10: Unfortunately they have to play the season with other (and more important) things on their mind
Bucs 5-11: I don't think they improved at all, looking forward to seeing Cadillac

NFC West:
49ers 16-0: Kidding, not that big of a homer

Seahawks 9-7: Will repeat in the weak NFC west, questions on D
Rams 8-8*: Just enough talent to get in to the playoffs
Cardinals 6-10: Next year will be their year.
49ers 4-12: Offense is bad, defense is mediocre. They didn't lose much, didn't gain much. I'll be rollin with Nolan all year.

NFC Championship: Panthers over Eagles
NFC MVP: Donovan Mcnabb

Superbowl: Colts over Panthers

BlueBleeder
09-08-2005, 03:04 PM
AFC

East
Pats - 12-4
Jets - 11-5*
Bills - 7-9
Dolphins - 3-13

South
Colts - 12-4
Jags - 8-8
Texans - 7-9
Titans - 5-11

Central
Steelers - 12-4
Ravens - 9-7*
Bengals - 8-8
Browns - 6-10

West
Chargers - 10-6
Broncos - 8-8
Chiefs - 7-9
Raiders - 6-10

NFC

East
Eagles - 12-4
Cowboys - 9-7*
Giants - 8-8
Redskins - 6-10

South
Panthers - 10-6
Falcons - 10-6*
Saints - 6-10
Bucs - 6-10

Central
Vikings - 11-5
Packers - 7-9
Lions - 7-9
Bears - 5-11

West
Rams - 10-6
Cards - 8-8
Seahawks - 7-9
49'ers - 3-13

* Denotes Wild Card Team

MVP - Manning
Off Player - Tomlinson
Def Player - Peppers

Rush Leader - Tomlinson
Rec Yard - Moss
Rec - Holt
Rush TD - Holmes
Rec TD - Moss
Sacks - Peppers
Int - Reed

NFC Champ - Panthers
AFC Champ - Colts
Superbowl Champ - Colts

JCD
09-08-2005, 03:42 PM
How many Bills preseason games and training camp sessions have you caught?

None. Saw more than enough of Gandy as a Bear though. I give his 3+ seasons as a Bear in live action more than what he did in a couple quarters of pre-season action. He was a liability and I highly doubt he transformed himself that much by wearing a Bills uniform for a couple weeks.

Well I guess I'm not kidding myself seeing as I said "I'm not on board...". The entire defense was a mess when the Bills tried him out as a starter, he's developed since. Pat Williams sat on the bench for a lot of plays last year, I don't think DT is a big issue.

You don't grasp the connection do you? You said it: the entire defense was a mess was a mess when he was a starter. He was part of that mess. He did not prove to be an adequate starter and I am highly skeptical of your claims 'he developed' since then. Most DTs show their ability to play within 2 years in the league. All Edwards did in that timeframe was show he couldn't. Usually if a DT has not shown he can play after two seasons, odds are he can't.

Pat Williams did sit on the bench for a lot of plays. But he was out on the field for far more. Edwards did great rotating in for Williams, but rotating in for a guy for a few plays and being out there the other 75% of the time are apples and oranges. Like I said, I think Edwards performed well because he was used in the role he was best suited for: rotating in while the starter gets a breather or playing in packages.

You don't think DT is an issue. Good for you. Doesn't mean that non-Bill fans agree with you.

Clayton said Losman may have gone #1 overall in last year's draft. He's not only a good athlete, but he has an incredible arm, can throw on the run, and a tremendous work ethic. He'll make mistakes, but he has a defense that can bail him out. He has a pretty favorable schedule to get him used to the NFL.

So he could have gone first overall in the weakest draft in the past decade? Strong praise. Aaron Rogers could have gone 1st overall as well, doesn't mean he is a bluechip prospect either.

Losman wasn't a top-end QB prospect. He was a clear-cut below Rothlisberger, Rivers and Manning.

You gave me that line last year too, about how Bills fans hype the team every year. Just as I said last year, I wasn't among them. I wasn't predicting a Super Bowl victory after they started 2-0 two years ago. I never thought Winfield was anything more than he is (a solid CB and a great tackler, but hands of stone and no playmaking ability). I never said the Bills would definitely get to the playoffs last year, I said they would get 8+ wins. They did. Bledsoe wasn't going to get us to the playoffs. Even if this year is another near miss, the QB change is still going to make us better off in 2006.

I don't have the time or inclination to do a search, so I just believe you. Bills are getting better, but they are not there yet. They are still in transitions with questions at QB and questions on the DL. Losman is a move for the future more than the present, they didn't make any move at DT.

Losman is too big of a question mark for me to say the Bills will definitely make the playoffs, but he adds another dynamic to the offense and has the tools and situation to do it. I'm sure you'll underestimate them again.

When/if that ever comes around, I am sure you will be right there over-estimating them as well.

JCD
09-08-2005, 03:47 PM
Losman is too big of a question mark for me to say the Bills will definitely make the playoffs...

Oh, I think they'll make the playoffs....

Which is it? You think the Bills will go 11-5 and make the post-season (11-5 will get them a 1st round bye even) or you think Losman is too big of a question mark?

We got you on record here saying 11-5. I am saying 8-8. Lets see who is closer to the mark in 17 weeks. I owned up to my error last year. You going to come around to do the same?

MLH
09-08-2005, 04:50 PM
Which is it? You think the Bills will go 11-5 and make the post-season (11-5 will get them a 1st round bye even) or you think Losman is too big of a question mark?

We got you on record here saying 11-5. I am saying 8-8. Lets see who is closer to the mark in 17 weeks. I owned up to my error last year. You going to come around to do the same?

My point was this. Last year I knew the Bills were going to get 7+ wins and I was able to say they "definitely" will in the form of a bet. This year I still think they will because I believe Losman will be fine. I don't have the confidence I did last year because I'm not 100% sure this time around. I think they will (quote #2), but I can't say they "definitely" will (quote #1).

We got you on record here saying 11-5. I am saying 8-8. Lets see who is closer to the mark in 17 weeks. I owned up to my error last year. You going to come around to do the same?

So I suppose you want me to put my money where my mouth is and make a bet. I guess fair's fair, but for betting purposes I'll take 10 or higher, you can have 8 or lower, with 9 being a push. (And I'm taking this liberty because last year you said the Bills would be a 4-6 win team and our bet was 7). So yeah, same as last year?

JCD
09-08-2005, 06:14 PM
My point was this. Last year I knew the Bills were going to get 7+ wins and I was able to say they "definitely" will in the form of a bet. This year I still think they will because I believe Losman will be fine. I don't have the confidence I did last year because I'm not 100% sure this time around. I think they will (quote #2), but I can't say they "definitely" will (quote #1).

So I suppose you want me to put my money where my mouth is and make a bet. I guess fair's fair, but for betting purposes I'll take 10 or higher, you can have 8 or lower, with 9 being a push. (And I'm taking this liberty because last year you said the Bills would be a 4-6 win team and our bet was 7). So yeah, same as last year?

Works for me, though you seem to be stacking the odds in your favor. I say 8-8 and you hold me to it. You say 11-5, but only hold on 10 and declare 9 a push.

If you get a game 'wobble', so should I. 9-7 or worse, I win. 10-6 or better, you win. That or 9 and 10 are both pushes.

clefty
09-08-2005, 06:20 PM
Gruden may be a good coach, but he is a terrible GM and left himself nothing to work with.

What does that even mean?

If you're talking about their cap situation, thats squarely on Rich McKay. And Jon Gruden doesn't do much in the way of management anyway, thats what GM Bruce Allen is for.

MLH
09-08-2005, 06:30 PM
Works for me, though you seem to be stacking the odds in your favor. I say 8-8 and you hold me to it. You say 11-5, but only hold on 10 and declare 9 a push.

If you get a game 'wobble', so should I. 9-7 or worse, I win. 10-6 or better, you win. That or 9 and 10 are both pushes.

Well, you said 4-6 wins last year and I gave you some "wobble" room because you seemed unsure. (At first you said top 5 pick, then top 10, then "with luck" they could win 7 etc.)

I'll readily admit that I'm unsure. I wouldn't bet money that they'll go 11-5, I might bet that they'd go 10-6, and I'd likely bet that they'd go 9-7. So based on that (even though we're not betting money), I would only bet 10 wins or higher. You offered the bet so I assume you're comfortable with 8 wins or lower. If this is too tilted for you, then I guess we don't have a deal.

Vic Rattlehead*
09-08-2005, 07:45 PM
Jags 8-8- I was high on them, until they took a mulligan in the off-season. Jones is a downgrade from Edwards for this season. Perhaps a notable one as at least Edwards was a savvy possession guy who gave Leftwich a 3rd down option. Taylor is already hurt and they didn't upgrade their depth behind him. Offense is going to struggle. Defense looks good and will keep them in games, but Leftwich is a pocket passer so is limited by the weapons he is given to work with. In this case, he has a butter knife and a couple of cap guns.


Jones will have a better season the Williams had last year (although that's not tough to top...). I can see Jones having a great season. He performed very well in preseason.

Defence will win them games. With a much better d-line than last year (Wiley and especially Hayward are much better than the junk they had last year at DE).

Also, you are dead wrong about the Cowboys. The offence is built around Jones, and last time I checked, he was one of the best rookies last season. Julius has a very good offensive line in front of him, and the Cowboys have another weapon in Witter for the passing game. The Cowboys also have a very good secondary, with Newman, Glenn, and Henry as the cornerbacks.

My predictions:

AFC East:
New
New York Jets*
Buffalo
Miami

AFC North:
Baltimore
Pittsburgh
Cincinnati
Cleveland

AFC South:
Indianapolis
Jacksonville*
Houston
Tennessee

AFC West:
Kansas City*
San Diego
Oakland
Denver

NFC East:
Philadelphia
Dallas*
Washington
New York Giants

NFC North:
Minnesota
Green Bay
Detroit
Chicago

NFC South:
Carolina
Atlanta*
Tampa Bay
New Orleans

NFC West:
Arizona
St. Louis
Seattle
SF

AFC Championship game: Baltimore over Indianapolis
NFC Championship game: Minnesota over Carolina

Superbowl: Baltimore over Minnesota

AFC MVP: Peyton Manning
NFC MVP: Dante Culpepper

JCD
09-08-2005, 11:17 PM
What does that even mean?

If you're talking about their cap situation, thats squarely on Rich McKay. And Jon Gruden doesn't do much in the way of management anyway, thats what GM Bruce Allen is for.

Gruden may not have the title of GM, but he clearly has influenced personel decisions. Bucs brought in a host of 'Gruden players' well past their prime for over-market prices. Perfect example is Garner. Those are the players that got them into cap trouble.

This caused an exodus of old guard players with stronger ties to the Dungy era than the Gruden era (Lynch for example).

Since this is unlike their activity pre-Gruden, you have to believe he is, at the very least, influencing the decisions made.

JCD
09-08-2005, 11:23 PM
Well, you said 4-6 wins last year and I gave you some "wobble" room because you seemed unsure. (At first you said top 5 pick, then top 10, then "with luck" they could win 7 etc.)

I don't remember what I said before the season started, but 4-6 sounds about right. I did all my predictions in ranges last year. My reasoning was a loss of personnel, a suspect offensive line and a rookie head coach. I think I lightened up on them once they started to string together some wins and it looked like Mularky was the real deal.

I'll readily admit that I'm unsure. I wouldn't bet money that they'll go 11-5, I might bet that they'd go 10-6, and I'd likely bet that they'd go 9-7. So based on that (even though we're not betting money), I would only bet 10 wins or higher. You offered the bet so I assume you're comfortable with 8 wins or lower. If this is too tilted for you, then I guess we don't have a deal.

Come on, you are the one who got your panties in a bunch because somebody didn't cream themselves over your Bills like you do. So much so that you have carried a grudge for over a year now and called me out on a bet. Now you are waffling that you are unsure if they will win 9, 10 or 11 games. Cripes, 9 wins is only 1 more than I predicted for them and you had an hissy fit over that. You said 11 wins. Stick to it.

JCD
09-08-2005, 11:31 PM
Jones will have a better season the Williams had last year (although that's not tough to top...). I can see Jones having a great season. He performed very well in preseason.

Defence will win them games. With a much better d-line than last year (Wiley and especially Hayward are much better than the junk they had last year at DE).

Being better than Williams isn't saying much of anything. Doesn't mean Jones will have a noteworthy rookie year. You can name the number of QBs that make an impact their first year as a WR on one hand with fingers to spare. Jones was drafted as an athelte, not a receiver. It will take time before he can play. Even his play this preseason made that clear, he made a lot of highlight catches that showed off his athleticism, but didn't do much in between.

Also, you are dead wrong about the Cowboys. The offence is built around Jones, and last time I checked, he was one of the best rookies last season. Julius has a very good offensive line in front of him, and the Cowboys have another weapon in Witter for the passing game. The Cowboys also have a very good secondary, with Newman, Glenn, and Henry as the cornerbacks.

You are right, Jones is the focal point of the offense. But look at the rest of the key players around him: Bledsoe, Keyshawn, Price, Glenn and Witten. Witten is the only one that isn't a cast-off. Those other guys were let go for a reason. Cowboys secondary is solid, but it isn't their secondary that concerns me. It is them stuck caught with a front-7 in transition between the 3-4 and the 4-3 without enough quality players to pull off either well. The 3-4 puts Glover and Ellis at a disadvantage, but puts their talent rookies on the field. The 4-3 puts their best linemen all on the field, but at the expense of their LBs.

clefty
09-08-2005, 11:42 PM
Gruden may not have the title of GM, but he clearly has influenced personel decisions. Bucs brought in a host of 'Gruden players' well past their prime for over-market prices. Perfect example is Garner. Those are the players that got them into cap trouble.

This caused an exodus of old guard players with stronger ties to the Dungy era than the Gruden era (Lynch for example).

Since this is unlike their activity pre-Gruden, you have to believe he is, at the very least, influencing the decisions made.

The cap trouble came from the ridiculous contracts given to the likes of Anthony McFarland and Simeon Rice following the SB win. As far as bringing in Gruden type ex-Raider, I think that onus lies just as much with Bruce Allen as it does Gruden.

And Lynch went because of cap issues and because of rising safeties like Jermaine Phillips. He and Sapp are far from the players they used to be.

MLH
09-08-2005, 11:44 PM
ICome on, you are the one who got your panties in a bunch because somebody didn't cream themselves over your Bills like you do. So much so that you have carried a grudge for over a year now and called me out on a bet. Now you are waffling that you are unsure if they will win 9, 10 or 11 games. Cripes, 9 wins is only 1 more than I predicted for them and you had an hissy fit over that. You said 11 wins. Stick to it.

Which part was the hissy fit? Gandy playing well in preseason? Edwards not being a huge downgrade at DT? Losman being in a nice situation? I just disagreed with parts of your analysis.

Whatever, Ill take your original bet. You say 8, I say 11, whoever's closer.

That said, you said last year 4 wins originally, I said 7. Our bet was at 7.

You said Ware would have 4 sacks, a Cowboys fan said 10. You challenged him to a bet of 10.

Besides this, those are the only two bets I've seen you make. You don't seem to mind "stacking the odds in your favor".

JCD
09-09-2005, 12:05 AM
Which part was the hissy fit? Gandy playing well in preseason? Edwards not being a huge downgrade at DT? Losman being in a nice situation? I just disagreed with parts of your analysis.

You are a piece of work kid. I would say this post is a nice continuation of your hissy fit. I really don't need to detail point-by-point your antics, that would be insulting to both of us. If you want to sit their and lie about how you didn't get all bent out of shape because I think the Bills are a .500 team, go ahead. Just don't think anybody beleives that crap. You are hardly subtle.

Whatever, Ill take your original bet. You say 8, I say 11, whoever's closer.

My original bet? Sorry kid, but you laid down the challange. I just called you on your inconsistency.

Who ever is closer wins. 9 or fewer, I win. 10 or more, you win.

That said, you said last year 4 wins originally, I said 7. Our bet was at 7.

Don't remember, but sounds right. When I made my pre-season predictions, I didn't expect some pissed off Bills fanatic to bet me, so made my best guess and wasn't conservative.

You said Ware would have 4 sacks, a Cowboys fan said 10. You challenged him to a bet of 10.

And this has what to do with this? Oh yea, nothing. Just more of your hissy fit antics. Grow up.

Just to make it clear, the debate was on what kind of impact Ware would make. I said as a small school player, Babin from the Texans is a realistic expectation. The Cowboy fan said Freeney or Suggs was more likely. Babin had 4 sacks as a rookie, while the DEs/OLBs he listed averaged around a dozen of so. He set the bar, not me.

Besides this, those are the only two bets I've seen you make. You don't seem to mind "stacking the odds in your favor".

Hardly. I just stick to my word and expect others to do the same. That you only noticed when I hurt your feelings about the Bills is your problem, not mine.

JCD
09-09-2005, 12:09 AM
The cap trouble came from the ridiculous contracts given to the likes of Anthony McFarland and Simeon Rice following the SB win. As far as bringing in Gruden type ex-Raider, I think that onus lies just as much with Bruce Allen as it does Gruden.

And Lynch went because of cap issues and because of rising safeties like Jermaine Phillips. He and Sapp are far from the players they used to be.

Rice and McFarland's level of play is comparable to their contracts. That hasn't caused problems as much as the money given to guys liek Steussie, Garner and the like have.

The GM definately has accountability, but I still find it hard ot fathom Gruden isn't makign his voice heard on these decisions. It wouldn't be the first time a coach got to big for his britches and starter to pressure the GM into making unwise decisions. Happens all the time and virtually every time it ends up burying the franchise.

Regardless if who called the shots, the outcome was the same: poor personnel decisions and cap management.

I thought the Bucs were wise in letting Sapp go, but disagree on Lynch. He was a leader on and off the field and still plays at a respectable level. He would have stayed for cheap and the would still be starting today.

clefty
09-09-2005, 12:52 AM
I thought the Bucs were wise in letting Sapp go, but disagree on Lynch. He was a leader on and off the field and still plays at a respectable level. He would have stayed for cheap and the would still be starting today.

I've never disagreed with anyone that the Bucs have been poor with their personnel. What I conject to is Jon Gruden often getting all the slack for it, particularly from the pro-Dungy Buc fan contigent. I think there's no way McFarland deserves what he's getting, he's got to be one of the most overrated players I've ever seen. And it wasn't just him cashing in on deals that ultimately hurt the team. Brad Johnson, Derrick Brooks and Rice were all given deals that just crushed us. Yes Rice and Brooks are unbelievable players, but its the way their deals were structured with guaranteed money that left a lot of Bucs fans concerned at the time, and those concerns were realised quickly. No doubt they could have been handled better.

And I think the Bucs have recruited very well this offseason given the available resources. Becht ginally gives the team a good blocking TE. Chris Hovan at a vet. minimum contract is a bargain if he turns things around. Ike Hilliard is a stable veterans that adds depth to a good looking receiving corps. You say that Garner was a bad signing (and he was) but he's gone now. Steussie's contract is now a vet. minimum deal. Deese is gone. So its not like Gruden and Allen are clinging to But all of these type of signings were made with some method in mind in an effort to plug the holes. We'd struggled to run the ball, so we brought in Steussie and Deese, both of whom were former Pro-Bowlers and were pretty awesome in their day, but things didn't work out. They got older and injuries crept in. Same with Garner. He had worked well under Gruden previously, Allen brought him, and he ****ed up his knee in Week 3; tough luck. Tim Brown was brought in to mentor Michael Clayton. So I don't think the Bucs have this old boys club mentality like a lot of people think.

Finally there's no way I'd want Lynch to start over Phillips, Dexter Jackson or even Will Allen today. Hey he's a great leader, but he's slow and never had much speed to begin with, doesn't have the ability to track down RBs like he used to. By playing Phillips, the Bucs can groom Phillips who has the potential to be a big game breaker like Lynch was. Lynch hit people about as hard as you could possibly hit a guy, but this Jermaine Phillips guy is no cream puff. He hits like a train.

I think that if we kept Lynch up until now, we might have lost Phillips. That would be a big blow for the future.

monster_bertuzzi
09-09-2005, 03:33 AM
AFC

East
NY Jets: 11-5 *A potent offense lead by Chad Pennington and Curtis Martin, Laverenous Coles will be re-born in New York.

New England: 10-6 *Still the champs, but this is a squad without Tedy Bruschi, Law, and two important co-ordinators.

Buffalo: 9-7 *Good lookin' squad on defense but question marks offensively. Losman will have to prove his hype.

Miami: 6-10 *Immensely improved from last season, but playing in a tough division. Still one of the best defences in the league.

North
Baltimore: 11-5 *STACKED everywhere except QB. Best defense in the league. Great offensive trio in Heap, Lewis, and Mason.

Pittsburgh: 10-6 *Note to Big Ben: it wont be as easy this year. Losing Burresss hurts, and the banged up runners cant help either.

Cincinnati: 8-8 *Note quite there yet. Some gaping holes on defence. Possible standout offence however.

Cleveland: 2-14 *Maybe the worst team on paper. All fans can look forward to is a receiving duo of Edwards/Winslow sometime soon.

South
Indianapolis: 12-4 *Scary offense. Adding Simon to an already deadly d-line can only help the defence to go along with the deadly offense.

Jacksonville: 9-7 *Great defence lead by Stroud, Peterson, and Darius. Leftwich looks like a stud, but can Smith and Taylor hold up?

Houston: 8-8 *A dquad thats on verge of great things, but still has some growing pains to go through. Look for A.Johnson to be a top 5 receiver though.
Tennessee: 4-12 *Ughh, to be a Titans fan. Once a great team now in shambles. If not for McNair and Bulluck, this squad probably wouldnt win a game.

West
Kansas City: 11-5 *Book it the Chiefs will be immensly improved. Surtain and Bell will turn that defence like night and day. Best 0-line hands down.

San Diego: 9-7 *Yeah im one of those who thinks they over-achieved last year. Still a good squad on both sides of the ball. Edwards is probably their 2nd best player.

Denver: 9-7 *Not a huge fan of Jake the snake. Defence looks good lead by Bailey and Wilson, offense should be good, but you cant always rely on that O-line to produce a 1500 yard rusher.

Oakland: 7-9 *Another improved team, but still a ****** defence. Maybe only Woodson and Sapp are starter worthy.

NFC

East
Philadelphia: 13-3 *Best team in NFC period. Stand-out defence lead by Brian Dawkins. The soap opera-ish mood is a bit worrysome though.

Dallas: 9-7 *Watch out for Julius Jones running behind Flozell Adams and Larry Allen. A chronic underrated defence lead by Roy Williams.

Washington: 8-8 *Exceptional defensive core, but a putrid looking offense. Brunell=worst signing ever and Portis was a huge bust last year.

NY Giants: 6-10 *Probably the worst offensive line in the league - and that wont help sophmore Eli Manning.


North
Minnesota: 10-6 *No Moss=Burleson will step up. FREAKISHLY improved defence. One of the best DT's in the game in Kevin Williams.

Detroit: 8-8 *Best WR trio in the game most likely. Defence looks pretty thin, despite Rogers' and Bly's best efforts.

Green Bay: 7-9 *Lost two important offensive lineman. Is Favre still passionate? Under-achieving defence no doubt.

Chicago: 7-9 *Amazing front 7 lead by Urlacher, Briggs, and Ogunleye. Hell a great secondary with Brown and Azumah. Offense, however...

South
Atlanta: 10-6 *Vick has yet to prove he's a great passer. Questionable WR's. Standout defence with one of the better LB's around in Brooking.

Carolina: 10-6 *Vaunted front-4. Delhomme is nothing special, but he has weapons around him. Foster and Davis make for a great RB tandem.

Tampa Bay: 8-8 *Still a great defence. Offense will be a struggle, but look for sophmore wide-out Mike Clayton to have a huge year.

New Orleans: 7-9 *Nevermind the hurrice tradgedy, this clubs defense is a tradgedy. Offense looks to be potent once again however.

West
Seattle: 10-6 *An already potent offense only improved with the additions of Warrick and Jurevicious. Questionable front-7, but adding one of the best LB's in the league in Jamie Sharper will only help.

St.Loius: 9-7 *Top 5 offense. Nothing about that offense is bad - from the O-line, to the receivers, to the backs, and finally Marc Bulger.

Arizona: 6-10 *Sorry, I fail to see how they are widely improved like evryone else. Not in St.Louis and Seattle's class yet. No RB, spotty front 7, and overall a youthful squad.

SF 49'ers: 3-13 *Only saving grace will be a healthy Julian Peterson - the stud OLB. This team is brutal offensively, but Keivn Barlow has the talent to make it respectable all by himself.

AFC Championship - Indianapolis
NFC Championship - Philadelphia
Super Bowl - Philadelphia

JCD
09-09-2005, 08:08 AM
I've never disagreed with anyone that the Bucs have been poor with their personnel. What I conject to is Jon Gruden often getting all the slack for it, particularly from the pro-Dungy Buc fan contigent. I think there's no way McFarland deserves what he's getting, he's got to be one of the most overrated players I've ever seen. And it wasn't just him cashing in on deals that ultimately hurt the team. Brad Johnson, Derrick Brooks and Rice were all given deals that just crushed us. Yes Rice and Brooks are unbelievable players, but its the way their deals were structured with guaranteed money that left a lot of Bucs fans concerned at the time, and those concerns were realised quickly. No doubt they could have been handled better.

And I think the Bucs have recruited very well this offseason given the available resources. Becht ginally gives the team a good blocking TE. Chris Hovan at a vet. minimum contract is a bargain if he turns things around. Ike Hilliard is a stable veterans that adds depth to a good looking receiving corps. You say that Garner was a bad signing (and he was) but he's gone now. Steussie's contract is now a vet. minimum deal. Deese is gone. So its not like Gruden and Allen are clinging to But all of these type of signings were made with some method in mind in an effort to plug the holes. We'd struggled to run the ball, so we brought in Steussie and Deese, both of whom were former Pro-Bowlers and were pretty awesome in their day, but things didn't work out. They got older and injuries crept in. Same with Garner. He had worked well under Gruden previously, Allen brought him, and he ****ed up his knee in Week 3; tough luck. Tim Brown was brought in to mentor Michael Clayton. So I don't think the Bucs have this old boys club mentality like a lot of people think.

I think we are saying more-or-less the same thing, just disagreeing on how much hand Gruden had in it. Based on history, successful coaches often start getting a big head and bite off more than they can chew. Being a good coach doesn't make you a good GM. Even if you don't have the title of GM, tough to keep a Super Bowl winning coach quiet and not give him a say in the roster he has to coach. Ditka did it. Parcells did it. Billick did it. Don't even have to win a Super Bowl, as Denny Green showed.

IMO, Gruden had a strong influence in who they signed, who they let go and who they kept. I don't have anything to base that on other than my own intuition. We can agree to disagree on that.

I am not Pro-Dungy or Anti-Gruden at all. I like both and consider Gruden one of the best coaches in the league. But like I said, being a very good coach (top-5 in the league IMO), that doesn't mean you make good personnel decisions. I think Gruden wanted 'his players' and loaded up for another Super Bowl run with vets rather than make the wise choices and stay the course.

Finally there's no way I'd want Lynch to start over Phillips, Dexter Jackson or even Will Allen today. Hey he's a great leader, but he's slow and never had much speed to begin with, doesn't have the ability to track down RBs like he used to. By playing Phillips, the Bucs can groom Phillips who has the potential to be a big game breaker like Lynch was. Lynch hit people about as hard as you could possibly hit a guy, but this Jermaine Phillips guy is no cream puff. He hits like a train.

I think that if we kept Lynch up until now, we might have lost Phillips. That would be a big blow for the future.

Lynch is an in-the-box safety and still a quality starter. No, he isn't the player of old. However, he still can hold his own against most TEs and RBs in coverage and is an intimidating hitter over the middle. His work ethic is infectious and he is a positive influence in any locker room. You are hard pressed to find any negative criticism on him. IMO, he is the kind of guy who helps a team well past the stat sheet.

I don't think the Bucs were in danger of losing Phillips, IMO anyway. You got two safety positions. Dwight Smith is a CB by nature and wanted to play there anyway. You could have played Phillips at FS and Lynch at SS with Smith coming in for Smith on passing downs or as the nickel back. You lost Smith anyway, so it isn't like keeping Lynch would have changed that. Lynch was part of the Bucs identity, I thought he would retire a Buc.

MLH
09-09-2005, 08:12 AM
my pre-season predictions, I didn't expect some pissed off Bills fanatic to bet me, so made my best guess and wasn't conservative.

I'm sick of talking to you and I'm sure you're sick of talking to me, but this one part I have to comment on.

It wasn't a preseason prediction it was after the Bills started 0-4. I was arguing with someone else that the Bills record wasn't indicative of their squad, they said the Bills were going to be 2-14. You jumped in for no reason and said the Bills would win 4-6 games. The original guy I was arguing with asked me which games I think the Bills would win. I listed him the seven games that I thought the Bills would win for sure. Then you asked me what do I want to bet that the Bills won't hit seven wins. Don't give me this "conservative" BS or act like you were shocked that a "fanatic" wanted to bet you. Youjumped in the conversation, you challenged me to the bet, you made your decisions based on seeing zero games. Much like you're basing your opinions of Gandy on his play a year and a half ago and much like you're basing your opinions on Edwards on the 2 games you saw him play in 2002. If you didn't expect someone to call you on your bet why did you offer it in an argument you weren't even involved in?

Count of DannyKristo
09-09-2005, 05:33 PM
AFC East

New England 10-6
NY Jets 9-7
Buffalo 8-8
Miami 4-12

AFC North

Pittsburgh 11-5
Baltimore 10-6*
Cincinnati 9-7
Cleveland 3-13

AFC South

Indianapolis 13-3
Jacksonville 10-6*
Houston 8-8
Tennessee 5-11

AFC West

Kansas City 10-6
San Diego 10-6
Denver 8-8
Oakland 7-9

NFC East

Philadelphia 12-4
Dallas 8-8
NY Giants 6-10
Washington 6-10

NFC North

Minnesota 10-6
Green Bay 8-8
Detroit 7-9
Chicago 5-11

NFC South

Carolina 10-6
Atlanta 10-6*
Tampa Bay 5-11
New Orleans 5-11

NFC West

Seattle 10-6
St. Louis 9-7*
Arizona 7-9
San Francisco 2-14

Mathletic
09-09-2005, 06:00 PM
Gruden may not have the title of GM, but he clearly has influenced personel decisions. Bucs brought in a host of 'Gruden players' well past their prime for over-market prices. Perfect example is Garner. Those are the players that got them into cap trouble.

This caused an exodus of old guard players with stronger ties to the Dungy era than the Gruden era (Lynch for example).

Since this is unlike their activity pre-Gruden, you have to believe he is, at the very least, influencing the decisions made.

there's your answer

The cap trouble came from the ridiculous contracts given to the likes of Anthony McFarland and Simeon Rice following the SB win. As far as bringing in Gruden type ex-Raider, I think that onus lies just as much with Bruce Allen as it does Gruden.

And Lynch went because of cap issues and because of rising safeties like Jermaine Phillips. He and Sapp are far from the players they used to be.

Phillips will become one of the premier safeties in the game this season, in preseason games he layed out a couple of guys and he's looking pretty good. Heart of the defense alwas been Brooks and LB performances. I'm pretty sure Phillips will step in and help run stopping unlike Dwight Smith

Gruden has done an excellent job at re-building the team, almost all 05 picks are making the club and have played well in preseason. Cadillac and Ruud will have immediate impact, Buenning has the starting job and Colmer could step in as well so he drafted immediate impact players as well as some guys like Smith and Russell who could become solid players really soon.


AFC

East
N England 10-6
NY Jets 10-6
Buffalo 7-9
Miami 4-12

North
Pittsburgh 10-6
Baltimore 9-7
Cincinnati 8-8
Cleveland 5-11

South
Indianapolis 12-4
Jacksonville 9-7
Houston 7-9
Tennessee 6-10

West
KC 10-6 ... Derrick Johnson rookie of the year in the AFC
Oakland 9-7
San Diego 8-8
Denver 5-11 ... Shanahan is fired at the end of the year

NFC

East
Philadelphia 11-5
Dallas 9-7
NY Giants 8-8
Washington 7-9

North
Minnesota 10-6
Green Bay 8-8
Detroit 7-9
Chicago 3-13

South
Atlanta 9-7
Tampa 9-7 ... Cadillac rookie of the year in the NFC
Carolina 8-8
N. Orleans 6-10

West
St. Louis 10-6
Seattle 9-7
Arizona 8-8
SF 49'ers 2-14

Wildcard Teams

AFC: Jets, Oakland
NFC: Tampa, Dallas

AFC - KC over New England
NFC - Philadelphia over Carolina
Super Bowl - KC over Philadelphia

AFC MVP - Tom Brady
NFC MVP - Daunte Culpepper

clefty
09-09-2005, 08:50 PM
II am not Pro-Dungy or Anti-Gruden at all.

I know. I was making a reference to the divide amongst many Bucs fans.

Gibsons Finest
09-09-2005, 10:07 PM
AFC

North
Ravens: 10-6
Steelers: 9-7
Cincinatti: 8-8
Cleveland: 2-14

East
Jets: 11-5
Patriots: 10-6*
Bills: 8-8
Dolphins: 6-10

South
Indianaoplis: 13-3
Jacksonville: 10-6*
Houston: 7-9
Tennessee: 5-11

West
Kansas City: 10-6
San Diego: 9-7
Denver: 7-9
Oakland: 6-10


NFC

North
Minnesota: 11-5
Green Bay: 8-8
Detroit: 7-9
Chicago: 6-10

East
Philadelphia: 12-4
Dallas: 10-6*
New York: 8-8
Washington: 5-11

South
Atlanta: 11-5
Carolina: 10-6*
Tampa Bay: 7-9
New Orleans: 5-11

West
Seattle: 10-6
St.Louis: 8-8
Arizona: 5-11
San Francisco: 2-14


Awards/League Leaders

Sacks: Dwight Freeney
INTs: Samari Rolle
Rushing Yards: Ladanian Tomlinson
Passing Yards: Peyton Manning
TDs: Priest Holmes

NFC Offensive Rookie of the Year: Troy Williamson
NFC Defensive Rookie of the Year: DeMarcus Ware
AFC Offensive Rookie of the Year: Matt Jones
AFC Defensive Rookie of the Year: Derrick Johnson
NFC Offensive Player of the Year: Terrell Owens
NFC Defensive Player of the Year: Roy Williams
AFC Offensive Player of the Year: Peyton Manning
AFC Defensive Player of the Year: Dwight Freeney
MVP: Peyton Manning


Playoffs

Wildcard
NFC-Panthers @ Falcons
NFC-Cowboys @ Seahawks
AFC-Patriots @ Chiefs
AFC-Jaguars @ Ravens

Divisional
NFC-Panthers @ Eagles
NFC-Cowboys @ Vikings
AFC-Chiefs @ Jets[b]
AFC-Jaguars @ [b]Colts

Conference
NFC-Cowboys @ Eagles
AFC-Jets @ Colts

Super Bowl
Colts-34, Eagles-21

JCD
09-10-2005, 08:06 AM
I'm sick of talking to you and I'm sure you're sick of talking to me, but this one part I have to comment on.

It wasn't a preseason prediction it was after the Bills started 0-4. I was arguing with someone else that the Bills record wasn't indicative of their squad, they said the Bills were going to be 2-14. You jumped in for no reason and said the Bills would win 4-6 games. The original guy I was arguing with asked me which games I think the Bills would win. I listed him the seven games that I thought the Bills would win for sure. Then you asked me what do I want to bet that the Bills won't hit seven wins. Don't give me this "conservative" BS or act like you were shocked that a "fanatic" wanted to bet you. Youjumped in the conversation, you challenged me to the bet, you made your decisions based on seeing zero games. Much like you're basing your opinions of Gandy on his play a year and a half ago and much like you're basing your opinions on Edwards on the 2 games you saw him play in 2002. If you didn't expect someone to call you on your bet why did you offer it in an argument you weren't even involved in?

It was a post on the Other Sports forum. I didn't realize you needed special permission to post here.

Clearly, you have carried a grudge ever since.

As for Gandy, I am quite confident i have seen much more of him than you have. 3 years in the NFL versus 4 pre-season games. Only a Bills fan puts more weight on the 6-odd quarters he played in the preseason. He was TERRIBLE before. So bad that he went from a starting left tackle to UNEMPLOYED. Left Tackle is a premium position, teams will go after anybody that shows a shred of ability (unless they are asking for Ross Verba sums of money). Nobody so much as offered Gandy a depth role last year. That should tell you something.

As for Edwards, the dude started 16 freaking games. I have no idea where you are getting this two game crap from.

We shall see who is right and wrong here as the season plays out.

MLH
09-10-2005, 11:18 AM
It was a post on the Other Sports forum. I didn't realize you needed special permission to post here.

I agree with that. I don't agree that you "didn't expect some pissed off Bills fanatic to bet me". I'll repeat, If you didn't expect some Bills fan to bet you, why did you offer me the bet? I listed my seven expected wins to someone else and you asked "what do I want to bet that the BIlls don't hit seven wins". You're twisting the story as usual.

As for Gandy, I am quite confident i have seen much more of him than you have. 3 years in the NFL versus 4 pre-season games. Only a Bills fan puts more weight on the 6-odd quarters he played in the preseason. He was TERRIBLE before. So bad that he went from a starting left tackle to UNEMPLOYED. Left Tackle is a premium position, teams will go after anybody that shows a shred of ability (unless they are asking for Ross Verba sums of money). Nobody so much as offered Gandy a depth role last year. That should tell you something.

I'm sure you have. I've also seen him in practice and the scrimmage, so it's a bit more than preseason. I'm not denying he was poor in Chicago. Still, can't a change of scenery and some coaching from one of the best offensive line coaches in the history of the NFL help a player? Would it be the first time that a player has gotten better?

As for Edwards, the dude started 16 freaking games. I have no idea where you are getting this two game crap from.

You watched all 16 Bills games?

ObeySteve
09-10-2005, 01:48 PM
I never thought I'd say this, JCD- but it's obvious you let the "Days of Our Lives" show run by ESPN and the media affect your opinion.

Why is it assumed that a few contract issues are suddenly going to make the Eagles less of a team? When EVER did a team clearly underperform because of off-the-field issues? These guys are professional athletes and in the end, will preform at a high level regardless of their contract situation.

Will I be suprised if the Eagles only go 11-5? Not necessarily. I doubt it will have anything to do with the reasons you listed, though.

Vic Rattlehead*
09-10-2005, 02:31 PM
Jacksonville: 10-6*

Dallas: 10-6*

NFC Defensive Rookie of the Year: DeMarcus Ware
AFC Offensive Rookie of the Year: Matt Jones

NFC Defensive Player of the Year: Roy Williams




NFC-Cowboys @ Seahawks

AFC-Jaguars @ Ravens


NFC-Cowboys @ Vikings




You're my new favourite poster. ;)

FlyersHomer DM03
09-10-2005, 03:57 PM
AFC East
1. New England Patriots 12-4 **(2)
...still the champions until proven otherwise
2. Buffalo Bills 10-6 **(6)
...I loved JP Losman coming out of college, everyone else will too
3. New York Jets 9-7
...Just too many question marks, they will be around until the end of the season but come up short of the postseason
4. Miami Dolphins 6-10
...IMO better than a 6-10 team, but a tough division, they'll be more competitive this year

AFC North
1. Baltimore Ravens 11-5 **(3)
...a pretty good team from last year, Heap and Lewis back, Boller has a big weapon now in Derrick Mason
2. Cincinnati Bengals 9-7
...I want to put this team in the playoffs but as deep as the AFC is, I don't see it
3. Pittsburgh Steelers 9-7
...They play a first place schedule this time around, injury problems already, and Big Ben is not that good
4. Cleveland Browns 5-11
...I'm always pulling for them, lets hope Crennel leads them to a few victories

AFC South
1. Indianapolis Colts 13-3 **(1)
...No questions here
2. Jacksonville Jaguars 9-7
...I love their defense, but can they put it all together
3. Tennessee Titans 7-9
...They'll compete, too many losses to make it a playoff run, but never doubt McNair
4. Houston Texans 6-10
...every year is "houston's year"...shut up

AFC West
1. Kansas City Chiefs 11-5 **(4)
...a lot of additions on defense, a top flite offense
2. San Diego Chargers 10-6 **(6)
...LaDanian is good for a few wins alone, brought in talent thru the draft, not a fluke last year
3. Oakland Raiders 7-9
...If only they had a defense
4. Denver Broncos 6-10
...The AFC has a lot of teams who are ready to make the jump, Denver is not one of them

NFC East
1. Philadelphia Eagles 11-5* (3)
...honestly, how long is the newfound mcnabb/owens love affair gonna last
2. Dallas Cowboys 9-7
...improvement, Julius Jones' first full season, I think they threaten the Eagles (to the point they dont have the division clinched week seven anymore)
3. New York Giants 7-9
...If Eli gets going, this team could make a run, don't see it happening but I dont rule it out
4. Washington Redskins 4-12
...ON THE CLOCK...you guys passed on Mike Williams, you guys traded a pick in '06 (a GOOD draft) for a first in '05 (a BAD draft--especially for QBs), next year you guys get to draft matt leinart and have an even more confusing QB depth chart...you suck

NFC North
1. Minnesota Vikings 12-4* (1)
...a lot of great additions, I think the loss of moss will help chemistry, Culepepper is a star
2. Green Bay Packers 9-7* (6)
...(favorite team, pep rant)...we lost darren sharper and cleditus hunt, BIG DEAL, those guys were cancers last year, did nothing positive to help this defense...Jim Bates won't turn this defense into something special, but our coverages/blitzes won't be as retarded as last year under bob slowik...the packers play an easy home schedule, could go 7-1 or 8-0 at home (and probably the exact opposite on the road), but they're gonna make the playoffs as long as #4 is at the helm
3. Chicago Bears 8-8
...this team is scary, everyone raves about Kyle Orton, he has a big target with muhammad, and don't forget the bears have developed a strong defense
4. Detroit Lions 6-10
...the only thing that i thought would save this team broke his leg last week, I thought Jeff Garcia would start week four, after the season i predict they trade for the first overall pick from the skins for a package of 5th and 6th round picks and draft Matt Leinart

NFC South
1. Atlanta Falcons 12-4*(2)
...are you guys all forgetting about this team, they signed Ed Hartwell to an already solid defense, Vick has looked confident in the pocket this pre-season, a great running attack
2. Carolina Panthers 10-6*(5)
...I like this team a lot too, but I don't see where they're going to get the offense, Stephen Davis' knee is a huge concern, loss of Mushin Muhammad, again i like this team a lot, and if they get on a roll like the end of last year, look out
3. New Orleans Saints 7-9
...don't know what to say but I hope they get a few wins early this season for some morale
4. Tampa Bay Buccs 6-10
...this team is going to be a threat some say? OK, maybe in the nfc they will...

NFC West
1. St. Louis Rams 11-5* (4)
...a good core of young players, Stephen Jackson is going to make his presence known this year
2. Seattle Seahawks 8-8
...Shaun Alexander is going to light everyone up (contract year...) but I don't see this team having what it takes to advance
3. Arizona Cardinals 8-8
...they're improving, Kurt Warner could help them to a few extra wins, we'll see
4. San Francisco 49ers 6-10
...improve, if you want to call six wins improvement

AFC Title Game--Colts over Ravens
NFC Title Game--Falcons over Panthers
Super Bowl XL--Colts over Falcons...Manning outgunns vick, wow NFL marketers would have a field day with that matchup