The battle here isn’t for first, its for second. The Packers are going at least 10-6 and probably 11-5. They’re simply better than everyone else. But the Vikings, Bears and Lions to me are very evenly matched teams. If the Lions can get their heads straight then I believe they could easily be a wildcard team. The Vikings go as Adrian Peterson does. And the Bears will miss Brian Urlacher on the field, but maybe even more so off the field.
Safe bet here, although the Lions do have a ton of talent. But I simply won’t be the guy who bets against Aaron Rodgers just to be “that guy”. They won’t really miss Jennings, they won’t really miss Driver. If I were Mike McCarthy and Tom Clements I would be looking to establish a legit run game with rookie Eddie Lacy. They can throw it all over the field and run up the offense, I get that. But a great run game helps their defense and that D needs all the help it can get. They’ll win the division, but the bigger question is weather or not they have another Super Bowl run in them. In the NFC it will be very tough….but they’ll be in the hunt.
There is no reason that defensive line shouldn’t be one of the best in football starting this season. 3 first rounders used on it now in the last 4 drafts, the Lions have trouble moving away from a position once they start drafting it. At least when they finally got it right at WR, they got it right in a BIG way (no pun intended). The problem is that outside of Calvin Johnson, they don’t have a lot of established weapons on offense. They need to start using Brandon Pettigrew more in my opinion. He is a great blocker, I get that. But they need guys elsewhere. Reggie Bush will probably catch 100 balls this season, but they need to spread it out more, and they NEED this defense to finally play up to the level it is capable of.
Ain’t no way Adrian Peterson does THAT again! Simply one of the greatest seasons in NFL history. But now they’ll need to get some big throws from Christan Ponder, and they made sure he would have weapons at his disposal when he dropped back to make those throws. This is a big season for Ponder, the jury is still out on weather or not he’s got the ability to be a franchise QB. I like him better than most, and of course bad fantasy QB means bad QB to a lot of fans out there which simply isn’t the case. Ponder COULD be a Joe Flacco type….but he COULD also be a Kerry Collins who had a few great seasons but basically was just an OK QB.
Pretty good team I have finishing 4th in this division, but someone has to. I’m a BIG believer in Marc Tressman going into Chicago and making that offense one of the best in the NFL. Where I’m not a big believer is in their aging defense. Last season to start the year, Charles Tillman was amazing, but that kind of production from DB’s never holds up. Julius Peppers is still in the mix, but he’s now going into his 12th season if you can believe it. They’ll put points on the board, and I’m not saying they’ll suck, but I just think they’ll finish last in this division. But after the Packers, I think its pretty even with the Lions, Vikings and Bears.
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