NFL Season Preview | Robert Littal Presents BlackSportsOnline

NFL Season Preview

by BSO Staff | Posted on Tuesday, September 4th, 2012

The REAL NFL season is finally upon us.

There will be plenty of interesting subplots to the season to keep an eye on. The Saints will be without Sean Payton for the season. The careers of Peyton Manning and Randy Moss continue again, while the careers of Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III begin. We will also see what effect the replacement referees will have on games that mean something.

On the eve of the season opener, I ask a question of every team and predict the record in every division and conference, ending with my Super Bowl picks.

AFC EAST

New England – Will the defense be able to get up to speed and in rhythm quickly to match the high-powered offense? Record: 12-4

Buffalo – Can their playmakers at QB and RB stay healthy for a whole season to complement the improved defense? Record: 9-7

New York Jets – Who is the starting QB (when good and bad) and who are they throwing to? Record: 8-8

Miami Dolphins – Who is Ryan Tannehill throwing to? Bonus question: What are the Dolphins doing, talent wise? Record: 4-12

AFC NORTH

Baltimore – Will Special Teams come through when they are needed this year? Record: 13-3

Pittsburgh – Can the aging defense give one last good run at a Super Bowl? Record: 11-5

Cincinnati – How much progression will Andy Dalton show from last season’s playoff run? Record: 10-6

Cleveland – Will Trent Richardson’s knees hold up for the entire season to be the workhorse he was drafted to be? Record: 4-12

AFC SOUTH

Houston – Will Matt Schaub and Andre Johnson be around to complete a Super Bowl run? Record: 12-4

Tennessee – Can Jake Locker take command of this team to complement a rejuvenated Chris Johnson? Record: 7-9

Jacksonville – Can Blaine Gabbert show enough improvement to give Maurice Jones-Drew a break? Record: 6-10

Indianapolis – How soon can Andrew Luck make Colts fans forget about Peyton Manning? Record: 5-11

AFC WEST

Denver – Are they getting the Peyton Manning of old or an old Peyton Manning? Record: 10-6

San Diego – Is Philip Rivers still the elite QB he was a few years ago? Record: 9-7

Oakland – Can Darren McFadden stay healthy for a full season to fulfill his potential? Record: 8-8

Kansas City – Will Jamaal Charles regain the explosiveness that made him an All-Pro in 2010? Record: 8-8

NFC EAST

Philadelphia – Can Michael Vick stay upright for a full 16 game schedule? Record: 11-5

New York Giants – Will the running game be there to support the passing game and defense? Record: 10-6

Dallas – Is this the year Tony Romo breaks through? Record: 9-7

Washington – Can RG3 rely on his running game while he gets adjusted to life as an NFL QB? Record: 5-11

NFC NORTH

Green Bay – Can the defense improve enough to carry the offense when it stalls, like it did in the playoffs? Record: 13-3

Chicago – Will Brandon Marshall help Jay Cutler make the jump into elite QB status? Record: 10-6

Detroit – Can Matthew Stafford produce a repeat performance? Record: 9-7

Minnesota – How healthy is Adrian Peterson going to be? Record: 6-10

NFC SOUTH

Atlanta – Can Matt Ryan get this team over the hump? Record: 11-5

New Orleans – How much will the team miss Sean Payton running the show? Record: 10-6

Carolina – Will Cam Newton suffer from a Sophomore Slump? Record: 7-9

Tampa Bay – Can Vincent Jackson aide in the progression of Josh Freeman? Record: 6-10

NFC WEST

San Francisco – Was Alex Smith’s season a fluke, or can he become a franchise QB? Record: 13-3

Seattle – Is Russell Wilson the answer in Seattle? Record: 7-9

St. Louis – Can Jeff Fisher change the losing culture in St. Louis? Record: 5-11

Arizona – Who is going to play QB effectively for the Cardinals? Record: 4-12

AFC Playoff Teams: New England, Baltimore, Houston, Denver, Pittsburgh, and Cincinnati

NFC Playoff Teams: Philadelphia, Green Bay, Atlanta, San Francisco, Chicago, and New Orleans

Super Bowl: Baltimore vs. Green Bay

Super Bowl Champions: Green Bay

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