The NFL Preseason kicks off in earnest tonight. It will be interesting to see what happens this year. I am going to make a few bold :-) predictions and we'll see if some of them come true. If last season is any indication, then...I might have a slight chance. The story that won't go away is Michael Vick. He will end up with a team, probably before the end of the week. Even though it will be a hard sell to whatever city where he ends up, I believe he will be a productive player and help said team. So...we'll see if it is the Steelers, Patriots, Packers, Panthers or Redskins that land him. -- at least, I believe these are the best possibilities.
In the NFC, the Cowboys are going to have a good year, now that they are minus the T.O. and Jessica distractions and Wade is running the "D". Romo is going to do well. Now, whether they win the Super Bowl or not, that is another question. They may very well have problems getting by the Eagles in their own division. I will be surprised if they do not win a playoff game this year and get the 13 year old monkey off their backs. The Saints can't possibly finish last again in their division with their prolific "O", but their "D" can't be any worse than last year. I think that last will fall to the Bucs...rather, the Bucs will fall there. This will still likely be a tough division with the Saints, Falcons and Panthers all battling for #1. Concerning the North --who cares? There is not a team in the division that excites me...although it is intriguing to see "how far up" the Lions can go from 0-16. The only two players that matter are Adrian Peterson for the Vikes and Calvin Johnson for the Lions. The one big curiosity will be to see what Jay Cut-it-out-ler will do for the Bears. It will be awfully tough for the Cards to repeat what they did last year. Even with his amazing trio of receivers, Kurt Warner will be hard pressed to get them back to the SB. If they do, I would call it a minor miracle -- I guess these can happen in AZ(?). The Seahawks and Niners will be much improved and could snatch away the division. The Rams will be better, but are still not contenders.
The AFC is going to be more complicated, as usual. The truly mighty teams of the league reside in this conference. It's hard to bet against the Steelers, although Big Ben finds himself out of sorts again. What is amazing, is that these types of things never seem to affect him, and he always manages to be a winner. If I do have one bet against the Steelers, it is the Patriots. With Tom Brady back and the team reloaded...again, it will not surprise me at all if they do not hoist the Lombardi Trophy in February -- in fact, I say that they will do it. The Dolphins will likely continue to improve in the East, as will the Jets with Rob Ryan guiding the "D". The T.O. Barnum and Bailey circus lands in Buffalo, but it will take more than him to turn them around.
Can't see much from the North, with the Bengals likely being the best of the under .500 Ohio teams. The Ravens surely can't be as good as last year, right? Don't think so. The Colts will miss Dungy, while the Texans could very well snatch the South. They will be much improved and get off the 8-8 mark they have had for a few years now. The Titans will be good, but not great. The West is a toss up to me...although, I think the Chargers and Broncos will be at the top. The Broncos are revamped, but I believe that Kyle Orton will actually be better for them than Cut-it-out-ler. The Chiefs will be better with new coach Todd Haley, he of the Cards "O" success last year..but not good just yet. The Raiders management stinks, but they could win more games than most people suspect. They showed some improvement in many areas last year, but much will depend upon QB Russell...they will go where he takes them. I will say with certainty that there will be some surprise team that jumps up to contend that no one was expecting...seems to happen every year. If I had a guess, I would say either the Bengals or the Raiders. So...stay tuned. Blessings,
P.S. Okay...how about Vick to the Eagles (several hours later)...first prediction --NOT.