Time to wrap up the NFC conference with the NFC West division. Home of the NFC Champs!
Arizona Cardinals: Congrats to the NFC Champs. They were minutes away from becoming the Super Bowl champs. I think it is safe to say that they will win their division again this year. I don’t see any other team in this division overtaking the Cards. Plus you take a look at their roster and you will agree as well. They managed to settle their differences with Anquan Boldin. They bring back the beast known as Larry Fitzgerald. The third wide receiver, Steve Breaston, is a great option as well. In the backfield you will have Tim Hightower and recently drafted from Ohio State, Chris “Beanie” Wells. Commandeering the offense you will have Kurt Warner. I know he is getting up their age but I feel he has one more season left in him. On the other side of the ball, the defensive unit gelled at the end of the season last year. I think they are getting use to playing together and will hold their own this season. While some other folks have them winning 11 games, I have the Cards going 10-6.
San Francisco 49ers: I think if the 49ers could get back Joe Montana and Jerry Rice in their prime they would appreciate it. Unfortunately Shaun Hill and Isaac Bruce will have to do for the 49ers. I think their offense would be electrified if Michael Crabtree would get his head out his ass and just sign with the team. It is people like him that make athletes seem greedy. You have yet to play one down for the organization and you are already demanding more money? I don’t get it. Well I know the offensive struggles will continue for this team. Even with a healthy Frank Gore at running back and Vernon Davis stopping his pouting. The defense holds more than its own. One statistic that was impressive that I wasn’t aware of was that San Fran’s defense only allowed 3.8 yards a carry. Now if the offense could average more than that a play, I think the 49ers will be ok. But I have them going 7-9 this season.
Seattle Seahawks: This team has fallen from grace. At one point in time they pretty much owned the NFC West. After their Super Bowl appearance this team hasn’t been the same. The team woes continue on offense with Matt Hasselbeck struggling to stay healthy. Not only does Seattle have their QB al banged up but their wide receivers happen to be bitten by the injury bug. Well during the offseason Seattle decided that they need to add another wideout. So who do they get? They scored TJ “Who’s Your Daddy” Houshmandzadeh. I think TJ will be a stud wide receiver. But that isn’t hard to accomplish when you are compared against Deion Branch and Nate Burleson. The Seahawks will have their challenges with putting points on the board. They will really need Julius Jones to step up and prove he can be a feature back. The defense however is stacked at the Linebacker position. They got rid of Julian Peterson and added Aaron Curry. The combination of LeRoy Hill, Aaron Curry, and Lofa Tatupu (shout out to the Tatupu family) will cause headaches to many teams. But it will not be enough to save this team. The Seahawks will go 6-10
St. Louis Rams: Another team that has self destructed after a few Super Bowl appearances. What happened to the Greatest Show on Turf? I believe that they have been in rebuilding mode for the last 5 or 6 years. But really does not seem to be working. They have a new coach in Jim Spagnuolo. Who brings his defense expertise to a team that has struggled with this concept. I believe that Stephen Jackson is a very talented back on offense. But with teams loading the box to prevent his explosiveness, he quickly becomes neutralized. Opposing teams encourage Rams QB, Marc Bulger, to throw the ball. And why not? Bulger threw his fair share of interceptions last season. I don’t think guys like Laurent Robinson and Donnie Avery will strike fear in opposing team’s secondary. For a team that has issues with both sides of the ball makes me believe that Spagnuolo will be in for a long season. I think the Rams will finish with a 3-13 record.
Well that wraps up the NFC conference. Stay tuned for my AFC predictions.