Before each NFL season all the big sports publications and websites predict what how they think the season will go. I almost always find at least one of their predictions crazy. So, I thought I would throw my hat in the ring this year and give my own predictions for the NFC.
I am not going to predict every game and I am not going to guess win-loss records. I think that is where a lot of the crazier predictions stem from; trying to account for each game of the season. Instead, I am simply going to present what I think the final NFC division standings will be and what teams will make it to the playoffs.
1. Dallas Cowboys
2. Washington Redskins
3. New York Giants
4. Philadelphia Eagles
On paper, the Cowboys have the most talent in the division. With the Giants likely declining this season, they are in prime position to take the division. Even though they lost Terrell Owens this offseason, the offense can still be a top-15 unit. They also made a few moves to improve their already impressive defense.
In Washington, the number 4 defense just got a whole lot better with the addition of Albert Haynesworth at defensive tackle and Brian Orakpo at outside linebacker. Second year wideouts Malcolm Kelly and Devin Thomas started to show their potential this preseason. If they can prove they are not draft busts and the offensive line can stay healthy this could be the year the 'Skins offense finally clicks.
This season the Giants began their decline. Without Plaxico Burress to throw to, Eli Manning will not be as successful. The Giants also lost Derrick Ward to the Buccaneers. That makes their running game weaker as well. With the improvements in D.C. and Dallas, the Giants have been surpassed talent-wise.
The Eagles will not be able to compete with the rest of the NFC East. The other teams in the division are simply more talented. For the Eagles to be successful, both Donovan McNabb and Brian Westbrook must stay healthy. Giving both players' history, that is unlikely.
1. New Orleans Saints
2. Atlanta Falcons
3. Carolina Panthers
4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Drew Brees led the best offense in the league last year. This year he gets Running Back Reggie Bush and Wide Receiver Marques Colston back from injury. Even though the Saints have a tough schedule, their offense will be too much to take. Defense may win championships but a prolific offense will get you to the playoffs.