Monday, August 16, 2010

NFL Preview Part 1 (AFC East)

Between now and Labor Day, Graham and I will tackle a NFL Preview the only way we know how, by debating it via email when we should be working. This week, we tackle the AFC. There's a 50% chance we'll get all of the NFC done as well. Without further ado, here's our AFC East preview.

I can't figure out the AFC East. The Jets are the hot team, but every year the most buzzed about team flops. And if Darrelle Revis doesn't get signed soon, that's a big problem. As for New England, they have no running game and Wes Welker is coming off about 12 torn knee ligaments. Miami could have a bounce back year, but who knows? Hell, at this rate, Buffalo might win 11 games. OK, maybe not.

I think that it's clear that the Bills suck. Is Trent Edwards still their QB? And is Lee Evans still their best WR? What's the opposite of a game changer? A game stay the samer? That's what the Edwards/Evans combo is. And if Trent Edwards isn't their QB, well, I'm sure whoever it is sucks. Pencil the Bills in for 3-6 wins. I'd look at their schedule and give an exact prediction except reading 16 Bills games sounds almost as boring as watching 16 Bills games.

The Jets, Dolphins and Patriots are all good teams. Each has flaws but enough talent to overcome. I still don't trust Mark Sanchez and Braylon Edwards but the Jets D and run game is sick. That'll keep them in games. I could see them winning between 9-12 games. Revis will play is my guess.

The Pats have Brady and Moss, or as I like to call them, the anti-Edwards/Evans. There's no way this team wins less than 9 games with those guys healthy. I have no clue who their RB is, their 2nd WR, or any of their defenders. But I don't count out the Pats unless the karma police crush Brady's knee again.

And my beloved Dolphins, well, they should be fine. I love the Brandon Marshall addition. Going from Ted Ginn to Marshall is like trading a used 1972 Ford Pinto for a brand spanking new Ferrari. Of course, this Ferrari could potentially get arrested at any given moment, but still. Ronnie Brown will be awesome for 7 games and get injured. Ricky Williams could run for 1,000 yards or breakdown. And the defense is average. I think 8-11 wins is in range, depending on how the schedule is. They essentially need to beat the Bills twice, and split with the Jets and Pats. 4-2 in division gives them a chance for playoffs I think.

Question: should the Bills just move to Toronto at this point? I mean, I hate to kick the good people of Buffalo around, but it's time for a fresh start for that franchise. They dipped their toe in the water last year for a couple of games, just make the leap already. I mean, if Toronto can support the Argonauts, they can support the Bills. Speaking of Lee Evans, I'm well acquainted with his nothingness. I had him in fantasy last year, and he was as effective as wet toilet paper.

As for the Jets, I just see a big letdown coming. Sanchez wasn't great last year, just good enough not to blow games and caught some breaks along the way. Between the hype, aging veterans whose contributions are murky (see: Tomlinson, LaDainian) and a possible Revis no-show, there's more warning signs than a firing range. I agree New England should have enough to win the division, but they aren't the juggernaut they used to be. I don't see them getting back to the Super Bowl.

And your beloved Dolphins...not feeling it. Sorry.

Here's how I see the division playing out:

1: New England (11-5)
2: New York Jets (10-6, wild card team)
3: Miami (8-8)
4: Buffalo (3-13)

I'm onboard with everything you said, except I think the Dolphins could sneak into 10 wins from 8-8 with a few breaks, just like I think the Jets could drop to 8 wins without Revis. I just don't see much difference between the Pats, Jets and Dolphins. The best team will get 11-12 wins and the worst team will get 8 wins. It's tough at the top there.

As for Buffalo, instead of moving to Toronto, can we just abolish that team altogether? Even in their best years, they got beat silly in the Super Bowl 4 straight years. Seriously, if your glory days involve being a joke of a runner-up, let's just call it quits, okay? Sorta like the Memphis Grizzlies best season involves the words “swept in the 1st Round of the Playoffs.”

You know the year that Randy Moss had like 85 TDs in the Pats 16-0 season. I took Lee Evans ahead of him thanks to over thinking it and reading too much Matthew Berry. It was the worst fantasy decision of my life. Just for continuity, here's my pick

1. New England (10-6)
2. Miami (9-7)
3. New York (9-7)
4. Buffalo (3-13)

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