Tuesday, August 9, 2011

2011 NFC Preview

By Cory Young. A freelance blogger, and self - proclaimed fantasy football maven, was once an aspiring sports journalist out of Temple University. He was disheartened by the newspaper industry to profit from the internet. Fearing the worse, he sold out and joined the corporate life. Like The Million Dollar Man Ted Dibiase said, "Everybody has a price."

Finally the NFL owners and players have quit their bitchin’ and the lockout has been lifted. What does that mean for you? Another season of beer, wings, HDTV’s, fantasy football and losing your paycheck on that 3-team teaser when all you needed was that damn Texans DB to bat the ball NOT into the hands of Mike Thomas (bet that happened to you too)! Anyway, all of these media-types have been telling me to get ready for some crazy free agency/training camp/preseason Royal Rumble where the last man standing gets Nnamdi Asomugha and a shot at the WWF title or something. Wait... the Philadelphia Eagles sign Nnamdi Asomugha...WHAT...the EAGLES got Nnamdi!? Ok, now it’s on!

NFC East: You know I rep Philly, and journalism is supposed to be objective, but the Eagles are unabashedly my pick. You heard they got Nnamdi right? *Clears Throat* You heard they got NNAMDI right!? To quote something I saw on Twitter, “It’s like we are playing franchise mode in Madden with the Salary Cap OFF.” Remember Madden 04-05 when Mike Vick was like 97 speed and basically illegal to use? Oh yeah, that’s their WHOLE offense in 2011. I know I know, the NFL isn’t a video game...until you have Vick, Jackson, Maclin, McCoy, and Rodgers-Cromartie on your squad. My bad I forgot Nnamdi - ok ok I’ll stop saying his name. Speed kills, and they’ve got plenty of it.

The Redskins have John Beck...’nuff said.

The Cowboys and Giants are left to battle it out for second place in the NFC East, and since the Cowboys are chronic chokers, I’m gonna take NYG here. They have a solid young WR corps with Hakeem Nicks and Mario Manningham, and aside from Eli Manning’s fumblitis and Miracle at the Meadowlands Pt. 2, they handled Vick and the Eagles pretty well throughout last season.

NFC North: The remnants of the NFC Black-and-Blue division shapes up to be another boring fight between the Packers and Bears for division supremacy. The biggest acquisition in the division is former Eagle and Redskin Donovan McNabb, traded to the Vikings, but well past his prime. McNabb is in no shape to lead Minnesota to the Super Bowl...or even the playoffs. Without a go-to WR after losing Sidney Rice, the Vikings are my pick for doormat of the NFC North. McNabb, just hand the ball off to Peterson and watch him bulldoze everyone in his path. It’s the smart thing to do.

The Green Bay Packers, reigning Super Bowl Champs, have a tall task ahead of them if they want to repeat. With 90% of their squad injured last year, Aaron Rodgers and Greg Jennings “put da team on they back doe" and took the pack to the promise land. With most of the team coming back healthy this year, I think the Pack has a solid chance of overtaking the Bears and winning this division. However, I can’t see them repeating and taking the title a second year in a row.

Who thinks Stafford-to-Megatron should be the new Daunte-to-Randy? I do...but if Matt Stafford doesn’t tell his shoulder to get it’s mind right, the dreams of all Lions fans will be flushed down the...ehh...actually they’re already in the toilet so it would just be par for the course. On a serious note, the Lions have genuine potential with that battering ram of a D-Line - led by Ndamukong Suh and Kyle VandenBosch. That being said, these guys will still fight to stay out of the cellar this year.

Oh, I have to write about the boring ass Bears too? Sorry, but for an 11-5 team they were extremely underwhelming last year...sounds like a nice descriptor of Jay Cutler’s career so far too, right? That dude has been criminally average since he came in the league with the Broncos - am I supposed to be impressed by a guy who has a nearly 1:1 Td-Int ratio for his career? Combine that with Chicago, the recently anointed “Land Receivers Go to Die,” and don't see how the Bears repeat as division champs.

NFC South: This is the division to watch for the next five or so years - the prolific Saints offense, the balanced attack of the Falcons, and the Bucs with their QB “All I Do is Win” Josh Freeman. With the addition of Julio Jones to compliment Roddy White, and Ray Edwards to bolster an already motor-heavy D-Line, I think the Falcons have what it takes to crown themselves division champs again. I wish I had the stones to pick the Bucs to come in second over the Saints, but if there is one thing I’ve learned it’s never count out Drew Brees. Unless he’s playing in a road playoff game against Marshawn Lynch.

No other division looks as hotly contested as this, and if Cam Newton is all the Panthers think he is, then a very talented team will be routinely missing the playoffs in this division for years to come.

NFC West: Kevin Kolb, Kevin Kolb, Kevin Kolb, Kevin Kolb! *Obligatory ‘Black & Yellow’ Hook* The Cardinals just gave Kevin Kolb 5.7 million dollars per career touchdown to rescue them from a division in which the winner went 7-9....SEVEN AND NINE! Seattle looks to rebuild its squad with the Tarvaris to Sidney Rice combo that made Minnesota so successful..............ok I can’t go on with the charade that anyone cares about the NFC West anymore! Somebody is going to come out of that division...I’ll leave it at that.

Of course I like the Eagles to come out of the NFC after fleecing the rest of the league this offseason and Vince Young dubbing them a “dream team.” I fully expect the Packers to be in the NFC Championship along with the Eagles. With a much improved defense I can’t see the Pack taking home that George Halas Trophy in January. Are the Eagles the Miami Heat of Football? Nope...there won’t be a squad full of Mavericks ready to take them down at the finish line.

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