Division and playoff predictions are tricky in the NFL.
Every week a team can look like a “team to beat” or the worst team you’ve ever seen. With the NFL only playing 16 games, one could put themselves in a situation to be roundly criticized for picking the wrong team without the benefit of hindsight.
Good thing I don’t worry about those things.
In the NFC, what it all comes down to is one thing: health.
A number of teams can say that if they remain healthy, they can have a very real shot at making the Super Bowl. Controlling that aspect of the NFL, however, isn’t possible; so I’ve based my predictions on another factor: talent.
It’s all up for debate, but I like debate. So without further ado let me give you something to debate about. Here are my 2015 NFC predictions.
1. Philadelphia Eagles
When Chip Kelly took over for Andy Reid two years ago the thought was he would bring with him the revolutionary offensive scheme to get this team over the hump. What has been confusing is that people didn’t expect him to overhaul the roster to do so. There have been plenty of sour grapes, but this team seems primed and ready to put together a deep playoff run.
3. New York Giants
4. Washington Redskins
1. Green Bay Packers
2. Minnesota Vikings*
I won’t lie, I had my doubts about Teddy Bridgewater being a starting Quarterback in the NFL (most of them because of his slight build). But he’s got the coaches, weapons, defense, and now the running game to make the Vikings a Wild Card team in 2015.
3. Detroit Lions
4. Chicago Bears
1. Atlanta Falcons
Pin these names on a board, turn around three times, and walk forward. That’s probably a more accurate way to pick the winner in the South. I’m going with Atlanta because I feel they’re the most balanced of the bunch. Dan Quinn has brought in an energy and attention to detail not seen when Mike Smith was head coach. Matt Ryan should flourish in Kyle Shanahan’s system, and while I don’t expect anyone from the South to be Super Bowl contenders, the division as a whole should be better than last season.
2. New Orleans Saints
4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
1. Seattle Seahawks
2. Arizona Cardinals*
Arizona might have been a Quarterback away from really doing something special last season. When Carson Palmer went down with an ACL injury, so too went the Cardinals’ Super Bowl chances. Palmer is healthy and playing the best football of his career. That bodes well for Bruce Arians and his team. They will face stiff competition from the Rams and Seahawks, but don’t be shocked if they are in the NFC championship game.
3. St. Louis Rams
4. San Francisco 49ers
*Represents Wild Card teams
NFC Championship Game Call: Green Bay Packers defeat Arizona Cardinals
Disagree? Let me know about it on Twitter. Follow me @DACubbage and we can talk about your beef.