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Author Topic: NFL (2022 Season)  (Read 166569 times)

jeffandnicole

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2050 on: January 17, 2022, 06:10:19 PM »

For me, having not really lived out east, I don't have the same notion about Eagles fans as you do.

Actually, the Eagles would be the first team I'd take off the graphic if I had to pick. From what I know they're a really passionate fanbase, but not so much obnoxious as one that embraces more of an underdog role (they won the Super Bowl with Nick Foles, after all).

Agreed...with the unfortunate luck of the very few stupid fans getting caught whatever stupid thing they were doing.

One thing that can be said for their fans...they travel well. Especially true for Phillies fans, where an abnormal number of fans can be found at visiting team's ballparks.
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JayhawkCO

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2051 on: January 17, 2022, 09:21:32 PM »

For me, having not really lived out east, I don't have the same notion about Eagles fans as you do.

Actually, the Eagles would be the first team I'd take off the graphic if I had to pick. From what I know they're a really passionate fanbase, but not so much obnoxious as one that embraces more of an underdog role (they won the Super Bowl with Nick Foles, after all).

Agreed...with the unfortunate luck of the very few stupid fans getting caught whatever stupid thing they were doing.

One thing that can be said for their fans...they travel well. Especially true for Phillies fans, where an abnormal number of fans can be found at visiting team's ballparks.

Cardinals fans I generally have seen the most. 

NWI_Irish96

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2052 on: January 18, 2022, 07:01:27 AM »

Ranking the road teams' chances in the divisional round:

Should be favored to win:
1) Bills

Underdogs but could pull it off:
2) 49ers
3) Rams

Not much change:
4) Bengals
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JayhawkCO

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2053 on: January 18, 2022, 07:03:18 AM »

Ranking the road teams' chances in the divisional round:

Should be favored to win:
1) Bills

Underdogs but could pull it off:
2) 49ers
3) Rams

Not much change:
4) Bengals

I think the Bengals are more likely to win than the Bills.

webny99

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2054 on: January 18, 2022, 08:10:44 AM »

The Divisional Round matchups are all set! (well, mostly)

Saturday 1/22
Bengals at Titans
Niners at Packers

Sunday 1/23
Rams or Cardinals (whoever wins tomorrow) at Bucs
Bills at Chiefs

Who ya got winning those?

Well, the Wild Card round ended with a thud as the Rams cruised to a 34-11 victory over the Cardinals in Matthew Stafford's first career playoff win. Prayers up for Cardinals safety Budda Baker who suffered a scary injury at the end.

Even when there was only 4 games, I can't ever remember a Wild Card round where there were so few upsets. There were only two truly competitive games, and every favorite won except for the 49ers who were a lot of people's upset pick, so it would have been extremely easy to go 6-0. Not very often that happens!

But I do think it sets up for a great divisional round which will legitimately feature the best 8 teams in the league, unlike most years where there's a Cinderella team or two and some really good teams that lose in the wild card. The Cowboys were probably the best team that lost, and I'd still have them 9th, right behind the remaining teams.

I'm not going to pick all the games, but like cabiness42 I do think the Titans will win, so that will be my one pick of the week.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2022, 08:53:59 AM by webny99 »
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gr8daynegb

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2055 on: January 18, 2022, 10:41:50 AM »

Ranking the road teams' chances in the divisional round:

Should be favored to win:
1) Bills

Underdogs but could pull it off:
2) 49ers
3) Rams

Not much change:
4) Bengals

I think the Bengals are more likely to win than the Bills.

With Tannehill as QB Titans will not be a lock.  If Bengals are on their game they win, it's just that people just expect them to let their Lions-like DNA to cause them to screw it up sooner than later.

Chiefs/Bills and Bucs/Rams could be classics.

Packers/49ers I see a tough fought Packers win with Packers just outlasting 49ers. Packers seem to be getting back many of their key players are right time to not have their defense be looking as bad as it did last month of the season.
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thspfc

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2056 on: January 18, 2022, 12:38:07 PM »

Bills/Chiefs is pretty simple to me: if the Bills are +2 or better in turnovers, they win. If they're not, they lose. Also, the team that misses fewer extra points/field goals will probably win. I trust Butker more, he's proven himself as a clutch kicker.

I'll take the Packers by double digits.

Hard for me to pick against either the Rams or Buccaneers, but it's Brady so basic logic says I have to take the Bucs.

I think Bengals/Titans is going to be low-scoring, and Henry will not be at full strength.
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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2057 on: January 18, 2022, 12:46:15 PM »

KC 31, BUF 21
TB 27, LAR 21
TEN 30, CIN 28
GB 24, SF 20

I think all the games will be much closer this weekend.

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2058 on: January 18, 2022, 12:59:53 PM »

KC 31, BUF 21
TB 27, LAR 21
TEN 30, CIN 28
GB 24, SF 20

I think all the games will be much closer this weekend.
I figure I'll make some predictions of my own.

BUF 26, KC 21
TB 30, LAR 27
CIN 33, TEN 21
GB 34, SF 24

Josh Allen isn't as good this year as he was last year, but the Bills Defense is amazing against the pass. They can hold Pat to about 2 TDs.

As for the Titans, well, they lost to the Jets. Ryan Tannehill isn't very persistent. And if Joe Burrow plays like he did against the Ravens and Chiefs, the Bengals should easily win.
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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2059 on: January 18, 2022, 01:08:22 PM »

I cannot ever bet against Tom Brady, else I would most likely go broke.  Since 2014, Tom has only missed the Super Bowl once (his last year with Patriots).  It's hard to imagine seeing him missing another Super Bowl as long as he's stays in the NFL.

I would love to see the Lombardi Trophy return to our AFC South division this year (or any year for that matter), so I am rooting for the Titans all the way.  If not my Texans, then I cheer for the Jaguars or Titans....none of them have ever won the Lombardi Trophy, probably due to them being some of the relatively new additions (Jaguars 1995, Titans 1999, Texans 2002).

Also why not name the AFC Championship trophy after the legendary Jon Madden?
« Last Edit: January 18, 2022, 01:11:00 PM by jgb191 »
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thspfc

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2060 on: January 18, 2022, 04:00:46 PM »

I cannot ever bet against Tom Brady, else I would most likely go broke.  Since 2014, Tom has only missed the Super Bowl once (his last year with Patriots).  It's hard to imagine seeing him missing another Super Bowl as long as he's stays in the NFL.

I would love to see the Lombardi Trophy return to our AFC South division this year (or any year for that matter), so I am rooting for the Titans all the way.  If not my Texans, then I cheer for the Jaguars or Titans....none of them have ever won the Lombardi Trophy, probably due to them being some of the relatively new additions (Jaguars 1995, Titans 1999, Texans 2002).

Also why not name the AFC Championship trophy after the legendary Jon Madden?
He also missed the Super Bowl in 2015, though he was by far the best quarterback in the AFC that year.
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JayhawkCO

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2061 on: January 18, 2022, 04:05:04 PM »

I would love to see the Lombardi Trophy return to our AFC South division this year (or any year for that matter), so I am rooting for the Titans all the way.  If not my Texans, then I cheer for the Jaguars or Titans....none of them have ever won the Lombardi Trophy, probably due to them being some of the relatively new additions (Jaguars 1995, Titans 1999, Texans 2002).

Speaking of the Titans, I saw a fun stat the other day that the last team Cincinnati had beaten in the playoffs was the Houston Oilers back in 1990.

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2062 on: January 18, 2022, 04:22:16 PM »

....

Also why not name the AFC Championship trophy after the legendary John Madden?

Because it's already named the Lamar Hunt Trophy. Hunt founded the American Football League, which became the AFC after the merger. No offense to John Madden, but in terms of NFL history I'd suggest Hunt's role is far more significant in terms of turning the NFL into what it is today.
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gr8daynegb

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2063 on: January 18, 2022, 06:57:06 PM »

....

Also why not name the AFC Championship trophy after the legendary John Madden?

Because it's already named the Lamar Hunt Trophy. Hunt founded the American Football League, which became the AFC after the merger. No offense to John Madden, but in terms of NFL history I'd suggest Hunt's role is far more significant in terms of turning the NFL into what it is today.

I don't think the coach of the year has a coach's name attached to that to the best of my knowledge, maybe that award?  Or call the all pro team the all madden team?

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Max Rockatansky

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2064 on: January 18, 2022, 08:04:12 PM »

....

Also why not name the AFC Championship trophy after the legendary John Madden?

Because it's already named the Lamar Hunt Trophy. Hunt founded the American Football League, which became the AFC after the merger. No offense to John Madden, but in terms of NFL history I'd suggest Hunt's role is far more significant in terms of turning the NFL into what it is today.

I don't think the coach of the year has a coach's name attached to that to the best of my knowledge, maybe that award?  Or call the all pro team the all madden team?

As a head coach I don’t think John Madden would be the guy who ought to have his name attached to said trophy.  Madden is a Hall of Fame Head Coach but there a lot of guys I would put ahead of him on the list of best all-time NFL Head Coachees.
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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2065 on: January 18, 2022, 08:18:12 PM »

Criminally long post warning . . . AFC coming immediately after.

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1. Cowboys (9-8): This might be wishful thinking, but there's absolutely no reason why this team can't get to 9 wins this season, and 9 wins will be good enough for first place in the division. Yes, the run defense is not very good, but Micah Parsons should help matters. The secondary will be much better than last season with the additions of Keanu Neal and Malik Hooker. So if the defense can simply be serviceable, Dak Prescott and the offense can get the Cowboys to the playoffs. Ezekiel Elliott is primed for a bounce-back season. Amari Cooper and CeeDee Lamb are both going to have huge seasons with Prescott back.

It wasn’t wishful thinking. Parsons had an outstanding rookie season. The defense as a whole improved by leaps and bounds (I know they haven’t been lights out this year, but compared to 2020, they’re miles better). In fact, the defense was the main reason for a few wins down the stretch. Other than the Buccaneers game, Dak didn’t have to throw a million passes in order for the team to stay competitive. Zeke bounced back to an extent. 1300 scrimmage yards and 12 total touchdowns would be great if he wasn’t being paid $15 million a year. Tony Pollard has been one of the surprise players of the season.

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2. Giants (8-9): They made a lot of good moves in the offseason, but this is still a below average team with a below average quarterback and a below average head coach. Daniel Jones cannot be trusted with the game on the line, and neither can their defense. Their best player, Saquon Barkley, has had injury issues for the majority of his time in the league.

I’m not sure how the “game on the line” statements aged, as the Giants were blown out so often that we barely ever saw them in a tight game in the 4th quarter. Jones was pretty solid early in the season. I’m on the fence about what I would do with him if I was the one making those decisions. He’s had three years to prove that he can be an NFL starter and hasn’t, but on the other hand, he’s shown improvement and has been dealt some tough cards.

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3. Washington (8-9): Dysfunctional organization with big question marks at quarterback. A tale as old as time. Outside of Terry McLaurin they don't have any great skill players. A great defensive front will only get you so far if your offense is terrible. I have them below the Giants because they are 0-4 against the Giants over the last two seasons.

My assessment of McLaurin being their only offensive threat was accurate, as he had nearly 600 more receiving yards than their #2 receiver, JD McKissic, who is a running back. Their defense wasn’t very good either. They were probably worse than their record would indicate. They did beat the Giants twice though.

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4. Eagles (4-13): My money is on the Eagles being the least entertaining team to watch this season, because they have literally not a single player that will draw people to a TV. We'll find out if Jalen Hurts is the guy. If he's not, they'll use their shiny top 5 pick on a QB.

I suppose I was right about them not being interesting to watch, because they weren’t. But what they were was a winning team that made the playoffs. Hurts should be their starter in 2022. They have three first round picks, which is unheard of for a playoff team, and it speaks of the good decisions that have been made in that organization. If they use them right, they could be a real threat within the next couple years.

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1. Packers (13-4): Aaron Rodgers is back and it seems like there won't be any more animosity, until the 2022 offseason at least. This is, once again, a Super Bowl-caliber team that will dominate in the regular season. When they do lose it's because of bad offensive line play and stupid mistakes at the worst possible time.

Yeah, pretty much. I suppose Immunized counts as a “stupid mistake at the worst possible time”, and it costed them the Chiefs game.

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2. Vikings (11-6): I expect the Vikings to bounce back this year. Kirk Cousins was, quietly, one of the best quarterbacks in the league down the stretch in 2020. Justin Jefferson and Adam Thielen might just be the second best receiving duo in the NFL this season, after Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. The defense is still suspect but it should be better than last season. During his time in Minnesota Mike Zimmer has earned a reputation of cooling his seat right back off when it seems to get hot, like he did in 2017 and 2019.

11-6 ended up being two games off, but I feel like what I said here was in large part correct. The reason why they’re not at least 11-6 is defensive implosions at the wrong time. IIRC, they would be something like 13-4 if the last two minutes of each half were taken out. Zimmer didn’t cool his seat off at all.

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3. Bears (7-10): A very hard team to predict, as I could see the season going one of a few very different ways. It was a questionable offseason for the Bears. Their quarterback situation this season is unclear - will Andy Dalton start as long as he plays well? Is it predetermined that Justin Fields will take over at some point? Will Fields start right away? That uncertainty scares me. Their pass rush is still very good, as is their receiving core. But they have a frontloaded schedule and if they start poorly, Matt Nagy could get fired and teams that fire their coach mid-season rarely finish with more than 6 wins. I think Nagy will hold onto his job for at least the duration of the season.

As I expected, the transition between Dalton and Fields was awkward, unprepared, and embarrassing. Dalton was playing okay, not good, not awful, until he got hurt. Fields took over and flat-out stunk for like five weeks. It was obvious that Dalton was the better quarterback at that point, but Nagy, with his job on the line, continued to put Fields out there. Fields finally gained some traction starting with the 49ers game. But if the theme of the season was keeping Nagy and letting him develop Fields, then why didn’t Fields start right away? It felt like Nagy was coaching to win immediately at all costs, but then got bullied into playing Fields when he clearly wasn’t the best option to win games. And then, of course, Nick Foles stumbled in, third-wheeled the story, put forth the Bears’ best quarterback performance all season in a comeback victory, then promptly went back to the bench. Nick Foles things.

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4. Lions (4-13): Just not much to like about this team. First year head coach. The few great players that they do have are very young.

Yep.

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1. Buccaneers (14-3): They're the most complete team in the league. Really not much to say. The weak division helps them out.

Back in July, I remember looking at the Buccaneers schedule to contemplate if they could go 17-0. I picked out two games that I thought would be losses: week 3 at the Rams and week 8 at the Saints. When making this prediction I added one more because Brady’s teams, while always great, tend to lose at least one game per year that they should have won by a lot (turned out to be the Washington game and the second Saints game). In hindsight I should have put that part in writing, though they ended up 13-4 rather than 14-3.

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2. Falcons (6-11): They will have a great passing offense, and probably not much else. The run game will be below average. The defense will be below average. First year head coach. I have them being better than last year because they would have been 7-9 last year if they could consistently hold a 16+ point lead.

Middle of the pack passing offense. I had a feeling that all the super unlucky/epic meltdown close losses would even out, but not to the degree that they have this year, with all of their wins being close and almost all of their losses being by double digits.

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3. Saints (5-12): Had the worst offseason of any team in the league in terms of talent lost. Neither Taysom Hill nor Jameis Winston is a reliable replacement for Drew Brees, and a shell-of-his-former-self 2020 Drew Brees at that. They were gutted in free agency. Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas (if/when he's healthy) will put points on the board, but not enough in most cases.

Winston wasn’t really playing that well before he got hurt. I feel like people saw that he wasn’t throwing as many picks as he did in Tampa, and just assumed that it was all of the yards and touchdowns but without the mistakes. The Saints were leaning heavily on their defense even before Winston got hurt, and their downfall wasn’t due to his injury as much as it was their defense declining. And the numerous injuries to other players didn’t help. Still impressive that they got to 9 wins.

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4. Panthers (4-13): Probably the most overrated team in the league headed into this season. Sam Darnold is not it. He's just not. Their defense will be terrible. They need Christian McCaffrey to stay healthy. They have a couple decent receivers and they might have a good coach.

Sam Darnold wasn’t it. He just wasn’t. Their defense was actually pretty good. Opposing teams’ point totals were deceiving because the Panthers offense couldn’t keep the ball and turned it over so often. McCaffrey can’t stay healthy. It’s sad because he’s such an exciting player, but his contract is way too much. Get rid of Darnold, get rid of McCaffrey, get rid of Rhule, and start over.

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1. Rams (13-4): Seems like people are overthinking the Rams. They have one of the best defenses, if not the outright best. They have a great group of skill players. The Cam Akers injury doesn't scare me as much as it does other people, since it's obvious that Sean McVay's offense can work with the vast majority of capable running backs. The expectations are sky high for Matthew Stafford, but even if he doesn't meet them, keep in mind that this team went 10-6 last season with the mediocre at best Jared Goff.

I’d say this is spot on. Sony Michel and Darrell Henderson have combined for over 1500 rush yards. No Akers, no problem. One of the best skill groups in the league. Some argue that Stafford hasn’t met expectations, and they still won the division at 12-5.

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2. Seahawks (11-6): Their tendency to always play down to the level of their competition will finally bite them this year. Russell Wilson will be great in September and October, then fall off significantly late in the season like he's done four of the past five seasons. The defense will be better than last year, but they now have quite possibly the league's most overrated player, Jamal Adams, locked into a huge contract.

Not sure how much can be taken from this. The Russ injury and the subsequent reboot of the offense killed their season. Kyler Murray was out for the same amount of time, but by that point the Cardinals had amassed a 7-1 record, affording them a loss or two. It’s going to be quite an interesting offseason in Seattle. Jamal Adams’ contract is still bad, so there’s that.

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3. Cardinals (10-7): Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins will have huge seasons in their second year together. AJ Green is a good addition to an already very good receiving core. Their secondary has a few good young players, though the loss of Patrick Peterson will hurt. The thing I don't like is the JJ Watt signing, that will turn out to be one of the worst free agent signings of the decade.

After a great start, Murray and Hopkins both trailed off significantly, with injuries playing a part in both cases. Green had a decent season, albeit a season that will be remembered for the blunder at the end of the Packers game. So far so good on the JJ Watt take. They paid him $15 million per sack and almost $1 million per tackle this season. Terrible.

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4. 49ers (7-10): The best injured reserve list of all time, except now there's a quarterback controversy. Woohoo!

I’ve ripped them all season, and . . . I’ve been proven wrong. Seems like Garoppolo has handled the Lance situation very well. The injury bug bit them alright, but this year it was early on, which allowed them time to make a run up the barren wasteland that was the NFC wild card race.


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NFC Playoffs
1. Buccaneers
2. Packers
3. Rams
4. Cowboys
5. Seahawks
6. Vikings
7. Cardinals

Wild Card
Packers beat Cardinals - Packers tend to turn it on going into the playoffs, so Rodgers will gash this Cards defense
Rams beat Vikings - Rams pass rush will give the Vikings major trouble, similar to what the 49ers did in the 2019 Divisional
Seahawks beat Cowboys - These two teams always play each other very close, but the Seahawks are the better team overall

Divisional
Buccaneers beat Seahawks - Bucs pass rush and run defense will be too much for the Seahawks to handle
Rams beat Packers - Somebody on the Packers will commit a stupid penalty at the worst time

NFC Championship
Buccaneers beat Rams - Comes down to the 7-time Super Bowl champion vs a guy playing in his first conference championship game


NFC offensive player of the year: DeAndre Hopkins
NFC defensive player of the year: Aaron Donald
NFC offensive rookie of the year: Kyle Pitts
NFC defensive rookie of the year: Jaycee Horn
Fired coaches: Matt Nagy (CHI)
5/7 playoff teams and perfect on the division winners. Rodgers or Brady would be NFC OPOY, definitely not Hopkins. Donald would be NFC DPOY. Not sure who besides Pitts would be in the NFC OROY conversation. Parsons will be DROY. Nagy fired.
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Whether a team makes the playoffs isn't comparable to whether they are above .500. Part of making the playoffs is getting the wins when you need them to get in, which Brady/Belichick always found a way to do. That's skill. Being above .500 or below .500 is just however things shake out. That's luck.

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2066 on: January 18, 2022, 08:18:55 PM »

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1. Bills (13-4): My one big concern with the Bills is running the ball. It was the reason why their offense fizzled out in the playoffs, playing poorly against the Ravens and then getting blown out by the Chiefs. If Josh Allen has an off game, or even a mediocre game, they're in trouble. Case in point: the Titans and Chiefs games last season. Their defense also struggled against the better passing offenses they played last year. But the Bills' passing offense will carry them to a great regular season.

The Bills were actually top 10 in rushing this year. That surprised me even just now, looking at team rushing stats. Looking at Josh Allen’s game log, the statement about his “off games” pretty much held up; his bad games were the Steelers, Dolphins in week 2, Jaguars, Colts, Patriots in week 13, the first half of the Buccaneers game, and Falcons. They went 2-5 in those games. As expected, Allen was top 10 in pass completions, attempts, yards, and touchdowns.

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2. Dolphins (11-6): I was very anti-Dolphins last season but I'm coming around on them now. The two reasons why I don't think they will win the division are a) we don't know if Tua is the answer at QB, and b) the Bills absolutely gashed them last year to the tune of 87 points over two games. But they have an excellent group of skill players and a good secondary.

Tua had his moments this year, such as the Falcons game (32/40, 291 yds, 4 TDs, 2 INTs), and the stretch from weeks 11-13 when he completed 84 of 105 passes (80%) with 5 TDs and only one pick. But overall he was underwhelming, and some injury concerns continued to mount. If I was the Dolphins, I would give him one more year and one more year only to prove himself. We’ll see what happens. I was initially a big fan of the Will Fuller acquisition, but injuries limited him to 4 receptions for 26 yards on the season. Jaylen Waddle is one of several 2021 draft class WRs that could be a star. I was at least right about their struggles against the Bills, as they lost by a combined score of 61-11 in their two meetings.

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3. Patriots (9-8): I'm always skeptical of teams who draft QBs in the first round, but I don't think Belichick will be rushing to get Mac Jones in there too soon. The problem is that Cam Newton can't throw the ball downfield, yet all New England has are deep ball WRs. They have two good tight ends, but tight ends do not win you a lot of games. Overall it's a decent team but they have no "it factor", nobody who is going to scare opposing teams.

Ha, ha ha . . . Belichick got Jones in there pretty quick, but he was ready. His only performance early in the season that resembled a traditional “rookie QB game” was against the Saints. Either I was wrong about their lack of a death by 1,000 paper cuts WR, or Belichick made great adjustments with the players he had to fit Jones’ strengths. Probably both. They didn’t have an “it factor”, and that’s why they didn’t last a quarter in the playoffs.

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4. Jets (2-15): They'll go 0-6 in the division because in terms of talent and experience they are far inferior everywhere on the field compared to the other three teams in the division. With a first year coaching staff, a bad offensive line, and a below average skill group, Zach Wilson will have a rough time in year 1.

As expected, the Jets were terrible. I was right about 0-6 in the division. But I have to say, I feel more optimistic about their future than I have in at least six or seven years. They have two first round picks, two second round picks, a third round pick, and two fourth round picks. If they can hit on a few of those, I would not be surprised to see this team in the playoff hunt in 2022. Wilson has found a little traction lately. Whether Robert Saleh will work out long term is still anyone’s guess, but it at least hasn’t been a total disaster. And hey, they gave us one of the iconic moments of this season: Mike White’s 405 passing yards and shocking comeback victory against a playoff team in his first career start.

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1. Ravens (13-4): They will once again have the best rushing offense in the league by far. Lamar Jackson's passing stats will improve with the addition of a few wide receivers including Sammy Watkins. But the best rushing offense doesn't get you far in the playoffs if you can't consistently throw for 250-350 yards a game.

They ended up 3rd in the league in rushing, and that was with their top two RBs going down early in the season, and their part-time RB starting quarterback also missing a few games. Lamar’s passing stats improved in some areas and declined in others, but to me it was obvious that he threw the ball much better in 2021 than he did in 2020. Had they not been ravaged by injuries all season long, they undoubtedly would have gotten closer to the 13-4 mark I predicted, though perhaps not all the way there.

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2. Browns (13-4): I have them second in the division because they struggled against the Ravens last year, giving up a total of 85 points in those two games. Baker Mayfield will take another step forward, but he won't by any means be an elite quarterback. They have the best offensive line and probably the best duo of running backs in Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Their secondary was atrocious last year but they improved it in the offseason, with John Johnson from the Rams and Greg Newsome from Northwestern. Even so I think they get ripped apart by the Chiefs in week 1 because it's not good to play the Chiefs with a brand new secondary.

No, no, and no. Except for the improvement of their secondary. That part was correct, as they were top 10 in pass defense this year. They did lose to the Chiefs in week 1, but it was a much closer game than I expected. Baker took about 4 steps backwards. Chubb and Hunt were not the best duo in the league, though D’Ernest Johnson came out of nowhere and finished with more yards than Hunt. A combination of very poor quarterback play, injuries, and questionable coaching at times made them the most disappointing team of the year. It was mostly the quarterback play though.

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3. Steelers (11-6): The only thing people remember about the Steelers is how they slumped to end the season, not how they started 11-0. But they did start 11-0. Big Ben is still better than people think. They have three great young receivers. They have improved their running game with Najee Harris. Their pass rush is really good. The problem is that I don't think they will do any better than 1-3 against the top two teams in the division.

Take everything I said here, and bump it down one single notch. That’s basically how the Steelers’ season went. Big Ben wasn’t completely awful, but it was still one of the worst, if not the worst, season of his career. They have three good young receivers, one of which probably won’t be with the team in 2022. They led the league in sacks again, but it seemed like they came in bunches; there were games when that great defensive front was not much of a factor at all. They even came up one round short of my prediction - I had them losing to the Chiefs in the divisional, and they lost to the Chiefs in the wild card. The only pleasant surprise was Najee Harris’ outstanding rookie season. Hopefully he stays healthy and doesn’t turn into another Saquon Barkley. Despite the mediocre record, this season also spoke to how great of a coach Tomlin is. There were numerous occasions where it seemed like this team was going to crumble for good (1-3 start, blowout loss to the Bengals, down 29-0 to the Vikings, blowout loss to the Chiefs), but they came back fighting every time.

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4. Bengals (5-12): Similar to the Jets but not as bad, the Bengals will be the obvious runt of the litter in this division. They might snatch an upset win over Pittsburgh or Cleveland. Joe Burrow is still recovering from injury, their offensive line is still bad, and their defense is still really bad.

Oh, boy. In my defense, a lot of people were thinking this same way before the season. Defense could still use plenty of improvement though.

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1. Titans (10-7): Their offense will be top 6-8 in the league, and their defense will be bottom 10. They benefit from being in a weak division.

Their offense was top 6-8 before Henry got hurt, now they’re middle of the pack. Their defense is also middle of the pack. I feel that they haven’t been quite as good as their record indicates, but they’re definitely a playoff team. They did indeed benefit from being in a weak division, with almost half their wins coming inside of it.

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2. Colts (7-10): They are better than their record will show, but the fact is there are so many good teams in the AFC that it has to be like that for some teams. Carson Wentz's foot injury is concerning, even if he's ready to go in week 1. Let's not forget that Wentz was less than impressive in 2020. They had a tendency to play down to the level of their opponent last year, I think they'll lose some close games that they should have won.

I believe they were better than their record indicates, as most of their losses came early in the season when they were trying to find their stride. Good to see that there weren’t any injury concerns for Wentz. I thought they had fixed the downplaying to inferior opponents problem, until week 18 rolled around. Wentz rebounded from his awful 2020, but as I’ve said several times, he doesn’t have what it takes to win three playoff games in a row, and in 2021 he didn’t even have what it took to make the playoffs. Let this be a lesson: don’t go cheap at quarterback when you have a Super Bowl roster at all the other positions. The Colts had every opportunity to land Matt Stafford last offseason, but didn’t want to give up the necessary capital, so instead they went with Wentz. This team led the league in pro bowlers, led the league in all-pro selections, had by far the best running back in the league, and missed the playoffs. Moral of the story is get a top 12 quarterback first and worry about the rest afterwards.

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3. Texans (5-12): Deshaun Watson is sadly going to be starting for the Texans this season. The majority of their losses in 2020 were close, they were better than their record would indicate. With no cap room and no draft picks until the third round, they didn't improve much in the offseason. The defense is still awful.

Hey, no Watson! Hopefully it stays that way next year. I had a feeling that they wouldn’t be as bad as most expected, and they weren’t. Davis Mills has a real shot to succeed in the league, which would be a great story.

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4. Jaguars (4-13) Below average offensive line, rookie quarterback, and first year head coach. They do have decent RBs and WRs. They'll be exciting for the first few games, but everyone will soon realize that they're not very good. That being said I do expect Trevor Lawrence to have a decent rookie season.

They were exciting for about a quarter. Lawrence had a bad rookie season. Urban Meyer STINKS. On to year 3 of the rebuild, they probably won’t be competitive next year either, but I’m not giving up on Lawrence anytime soon.

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1. Chiefs (15-2): Their offense is ridiculous and the addition of Orlando Brown should make it one level higher still than last season. They are the best two minute drill team ever, other than perhaps the '07 Patriots. Mahomes will put up MVP stats yet again. One thing they had issues with last season was, oddly, red zone offense.

It took them until week 10 to be the team I expected them to be, but they got there. Mahomes has had the worst season of his career. Mahomes has been great once again. They’ve got some red zone issues for the second year in a row, which is puzzling, but they move the ball so well that it doesn’t matter most of the time.

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2. Chargers (9-8): I think they will struggle at the beginning of the season with a first year head coach, a brand new offensive line, and a heavily frontloaded schedule. But they'll pick it up later on in the season. Justin Herbert will have a great year, but the pressure on him will increase during the offseason, with no playoff appearences.

The timeline was the opposite of what I expected - they started 4-1 and were a .500 team afterwards. Herbert indeed had a great year, but with no playoff appearances, he, Staley, and this team will enter next season under a huge amount of pressure. My way-too-early bold prediction is that Staley will be canned if they don’t make it past the wild card in 2022-23.

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3. Broncos (6-11): I hope they start Drew Lock rather than Teddy Bridgewater because Bridgewater is a ticket straight to 6 wins without fail, whereas with Lock they will at least see once and for all whether or not he has a future as a starter. Their receivers, tight ends, and running backs are pretty good (so long as they don't have to play quarterback  :-D). Defense is a far cry from the No Fly Zone, to say the least.

It ended up being 7 wins instead of 6. Bridgewater was slightly better than I expected, but not great by any means. Lock is not the guy. I just laughed at my own joke there.

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4. Raiders (5-12): They don't have anybody or any group of players that will go out and win the team the game. There are questions about the head coach. Their offensive line was gutted. They're always bad in November and December. Really there's not too much to like about this team, aside from their stadium I guess.

This season has proven that Derek Carr is that guy, someone who will go out and win the team the game. He did that on numerous occasions this year. Similar to the Steelers, there were a lot of moments that seemed like season-killers (though those moments for the Raiders were mostly off the field), but they bounced back every time, which speaks to good leadership and good culture. They certainly fell off after their 3-0 and 5-2 start, but it wasn’t the full-blown collapse that the 2019 and 2020 Raiders underwent, as they managed to pull their season from the rubble with five huge wins down the stretch.


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AFC Playoffs
1. Chiefs
2. Bills
3. Ravens
4. Titans
5. Browns
6. Steelers
7. Dolphins

Wild Card
Bills beat Dolphins - As I mentioned, the Dolphins had trouble with the Bills last season
Steelers beat Ravens - Steelers are the more complete team, and that's important in the playoffs
Browns beat Titans - Titans defense was really bad against the Browns last season

Divisional
Chiefs beat Steelers - Chiefs offense coming off a bye will be too much for even the Steelers defense to handle
Browns beat Bills - Browns running game will power through the Bills defense

AFC Championship
Chiefs beat Browns - the only reason why the divisional round game last season wasn't a blowout was the Mahomes injury


AFC offensive player of the year: Patrick Mahomes
AFC defensive player of the year: TJ Watt
AFC offensive rookie of the year: Trevor Lawrence
AFC defensive rookie of the year: Patrick Surtain
Fired coaches: Zac Taylor (CIN), Vic Fangio (DEN), Jon Gruden (LV)
4/7 playoff teams, 3/4 division winners. None of the AFC teams I had making the playoffs finished worse than 8-9. No such award exists, but one could make a solid argument for Mahomes being the AFC OPOY. Watt would be the obvious AFC DPOY. Chase, not Lawrence, for AFC ROTY. Didn't follow the Broncos much, but according to oddsmakers Surtain is second favorite for DROY after Parsons, so there ya go. Fangio out, Gruden out, Taylor rightfully still employed.
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Whether a team makes the playoffs isn't comparable to whether they are above .500. Part of making the playoffs is getting the wins when you need them to get in, which Brady/Belichick always found a way to do. That's skill. Being above .500 or below .500 is just however things shake out. That's luck.

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2067 on: January 18, 2022, 08:26:20 PM »

BUF   13   4   MIA   10   7   NE   10   7   NYJ   3   14
BAL   11   6   CLE   11   6   PIT   9   8   CIN   3   14
TEN   11   6   IND   9   8   JAX   7   10   HOU   2   15
KC   13   4   LAC   12   5   DEN   8   9   LV   7   10

NYG   9   8   DAL   8   9   WAS   8   9   PHI   7   10
GB   11   6   CHI   8   9   MIN   7   10   DET   4   13
TB   13   4   NO   6   11   ATL   6   11   CAR   4   13
LAR   13   4   SEA   12   5   SF   11   6   ARI   6   11

(2) KC over (7) MIA, (6) CLE over (3) BAL, (5) LAC over (4) TEN
(2) LAR over (7) CHI, (6) SF over (3) GB, (5) SEA over (4) NYG

(1) BUF over (6) CLE, (5) LAC over (2) KC
(1) TB over (6) SF, (2) LAR over (5) SEA

(1) BUF over (5) LAC
(2) LAR over (1) TB

Buffalo finally wins their first Super Bowl in 5 attempts by completing the LA double in LA.

I got 6/8 division winners right, 7/14 playoff teams, 5/8 division round teams.

Could still get 3/4 championship round teams and both Super Bowl teams.

Really overestimated the Chargers, Seahawks and Giants. Really underestimated the Bengals, Eagles and Cardinals.
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webny99

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2068 on: January 18, 2022, 09:31:41 PM »

Unlike others here I didn't really make a lot of predictions. I remembered why when I played the fork game and got 3 AFC teams wrong with only 2 weeks left! But I did pose a bunch of preseason questions which I plan to go back and answer after the Super Bowl.

In the big picture, there were definitely some surprises:

Per FiveThirtyEight, 3 of the bottom 10 teams in the preseason ended up making the playoffs: Bengals, Raiders, and Eagles. All three had preseason playoff odds of less than 25%, and the first two ended up playing each other in the playoffs!

Meanwhile, 3 of the top 10 teams in the preseason ended up missing the playoffs: Browns, Ravens, and Seahawks. The Seahawks ended up being only team in their division not to make the playoffs, and the AFC North was just complete craziness, with the final standings ending up almost the exact reverse of what most people predicted.
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webny99

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2069 on: January 18, 2022, 10:36:27 PM »

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1. Packers (13-4) ...

Yeah, pretty much. I suppose Immunized counts as a “stupid mistake at the worst possible time”, and it costed them the Chiefs game.

It may have cost them the game, but it did save your 13-4 prediction!


This season has proven that Derek Carr is that guy, someone who will go out and win the team the game. He did that on numerous occasions this year. ...

If you need a field goal drive to win it, there might not be a QB I'd rather have than Derek Carr. He did it what, 5 or 6 times this season? It's a bit of a different story needing a touchdown though, as we saw against the Bengals. Settling for field goals in the red zone was a problem for them all season and it cost them in the playoffs.
« Last Edit: January 18, 2022, 10:38:35 PM by webny99 »
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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2070 on: January 18, 2022, 10:59:05 PM »

Quote
1. Packers (13-4) ...

Yeah, pretty much. I suppose Immunized counts as a “stupid mistake at the worst possible time”, and it costed them the Chiefs game.

It may have cost them the game, but it did save your 13-4 prediction!


This season has proven that Derek Carr is that guy, someone who will go out and win the team the game. He did that on numerous occasions this year. ...

If you need a field goal drive to win it, there might not be a QB I'd rather have than Derek Carr. He did it what, 5 or 6 times this season? It's a bit of a different story needing a touchdown though, as we saw against the Bengals. Settling for field goals in the red zone was a problem for them all season and it cost them in the playoffs.
I'd rather have Brady, Rodgers, and Mahomes. So Carr would be #4.
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Whether a team makes the playoffs isn't comparable to whether they are above .500. Part of making the playoffs is getting the wins when you need them to get in, which Brady/Belichick always found a way to do. That's skill. Being above .500 or below .500 is just however things shake out. That's luck.

webny99

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2071 on: January 18, 2022, 11:05:22 PM »

Wow, get this... Tom Brady is older than all the remaining opposing NFC head coaches (McVay, Shanahan, and LaFleur):

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2072 on: January 18, 2022, 11:30:50 PM »

Brady old
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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2073 on: January 19, 2022, 12:10:24 PM »

My predictions:

AFC East:
1. Bills (14-3)
2. Dolphins (11-6)
3. Patriots (9-7-1)
4. Jets (2-15)

AFC North:
1. Browns (11-6)
2. Ravens (11-6)
3. Steelers (8-9)
4. Bengals (5-12)

AFC South:
1. Titans (12-5)
2. Colts (8-9)
3. Jaguars (7-10)
4. Texans (1-16)

AFC West:
1. Chiefs (15-2)
2. Chargers (11-6)
3. Broncos (6-11)
4. Raiders (6-11)

AFC Playoff Seeds:
1. Chiefs
2. Bills
3. Titans
4. Browns
5. Chargers
6. Ravens
7. Dolphins

AFC Championship:
Bills over Chiefs, 35-31


NFC East:
1. Cowboys (10-7)
2. Washington (8-9)
3. Giants (8-9)
4. Eagles (3-14)

NFC North:
1. Bears (10-7)
2. Packers (10-7)
3. Vikings (9-8)
4. Lions (2-15)

NFC South:
1. Buccaneers (13-4)
2. Saints (6-10-1)
3. Falcons (6-11)
4. Panthers (4-13)

NFC West:
1. Rams (16-1)
2. Cardinals (12-5)
3. 49ers (10-7)
4. Seahawks (9-8)

NFC Playoff Seeds:
1. Rams
2. Buccaneers
3. Cowboys
4. Bears
5. Cardinals
6. 49ers
7. Packers

NFC Championship:
Rams over Cardinals, 34-13

Super Bowl:
Rams over Bills, 30-21

HOT TAKES:
-Bears win NFC North
-Cardinals and Chargers surprise positively
-NFC West has no losing teams, with Seahawks in last place
Looks like my predictions weren't too great, except for the NFC West, which other than the Rams not winning 16 games, I pretty much nailed, right down to the score between the Cardinals and Rams in the wild-card game! (admittedly, I predicted it as the Championship game, but whatever)

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Re: NFL (2021 Season)
« Reply #2074 on: January 19, 2022, 12:26:01 PM »

The game in Green Bay Saturday night isn't going to break any cold records, but it's going to be a bit nippy.  Upper teens at kickoff. Looking breezy, so wind chill is going to make it feel like low singles.

The home field weather advantage at Lambeau seems to be of another era, so I'm not reading too much into that forecast.
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