NFC South Preview.

NFC SOUTH:

Brees over Brady in battle at the top.

WINNERS – NEW ORLEANS SAINTS:

We’re getting to the business end of Drew Brees’ career and this is probably the best chance he’s got to finally add a second ring to his collection, the Saints have a deep squad with what seems like starting level backups across the board which is more valuable in this season above all others. The off-season acquisition of Jameis Winston some found head scratching but I liked the move, Winston has talent and if anyone can settle him down and get the best out of him its Sean Payton who knows that Drew Brees won’t be around much longer. Michael Thomas is the guy I’d most want on my team to catch those passes in the crowded middle of the field and is a real tough Receiver who catches everything and is Drew Brees’ best friend, in the backfield it’s Alvin Kamara, one of the best pass catching backs in the league and a real mismatch when Payton gets him involved in the pass game. On defense there is some talent, but they’ll be hoping 3rd round draft pick, Zack Baun is able to contribute straight away and a big breakout season from Marcus Davenport is expected. It’ll be exciting now the Tampa Bay Buccs are building the Gridiron version of the Golden State Warriors but give me the Saints for one last Super Bowl push although they’ll be hoping the Vikings aren’t on the schedule once the post season rolls around after what has happened the last two years.

PREDICTION: 12-4

BEST CASE: 13-3

WORST CASE: 10-6


2ND PLACE – TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS:

The Tampa Bay Patriots are ALL IN! Bringing in arguable G.O.A.T, Tom Brady to replace turnover machine, Jameis Winston should give Arians more control over the offense, bringing arguable TE G.O.A.T, Rob Gronkowski out of retirement for one more rodeo with Brady only makes them more dangerous in the passing game where Mike Evans (a man who has managed to make both Johnny Manziel and Jameis Winston look good!) and Chris Godwin form the scariest WR duo in football with both guys being genuine #1 WR’s, the only question on this offense was answered when the Buccs added Leonard Fournette after he was released by the Jaguars, he will take over the lead Tailback roll sooner rather than later giving the Buccs a dangerous offense. On Defense this is a unit which lead the league in stopping the run last year which is hardly surprising in a Todd Bowles Defense but they’ll need to improve on a 30th ranked pass D that was diced up often last year. I think we see the Buccs have a great year and make the playoffs whilst pushing the Saints close for the division.

PREDICTION: 11-5

BEST CASE: 12-4

WORST CASE: 9-7


3RD PLACE – ATLANTA FALCONS:

Kind of feeling sorry for the Falcons a little bit, probably only just got Tom Brady and that 28-3 out of their heads and who decides to pop up in the NFC South and face them twice a year… anyway this is a Falcons team I expect will be exciting even if not always winning, it’s almost a banker they attempt the most passes in the league with this Dirk Koetter offense and with Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley and new acquisition, Hayden Hurst this Atlanta offense have some pass catching weapons, what they don’t have in my opinion is a Running Back they can trust, Todd Gurley was a stud but his arthritic knees don’t give me confidence he can be a featured tail back for the duration of a 16 game season and the depth behind him don’t fill me with confidence. On D they don’t impress me, 1st round draft pick, AJ Terrell was one of my favourite prospects coming out in the draft and I expect to see contribute in his rookie season and although FA signing, Dante Fowler Jr should be able to help but until they find a way to get to the passer more often its going to be a struggle for this D to keep scores down.

PREDICTION: 8-8

BEST CASE: 10-6

WORST CASE: 7-9


4TH PLACE – CAROLINA PANTHERS:

It’s start over time in Charlotte, Ron Rivera and Cam Newton are replaced by first time NFL HC Matt Rhule who comes over from the college game and brings with him LSU’s Offensive Co-Ordinator from last years historic offense, Joe Brady and I’m excited to see how both translate to the pro game and Teddy Bridgewater finally gets his chance to be a starting QB again and has some things to work with, Christian McCaffrey is the best Running Back in the league and was paid as such this off season, but it’s not all about CMC on this offense, D.J. Moore leads an exciting WR trio which includes Curtis Samuel and Robby Anderson and it’ll be interesting to see how Joe Brady plans to use these guys. Defense is a project at the moment, with Pro-Bowl Linebacker, Luke Kuechly retiring the Panthers did something unprecedented in the Draft by selecting defensive players with all 7 of their selections, this has given them some young talent and some potential cornerstones but there’s going to be some teething problems here although I expect last years first rounder, Brian Burns to really establish himself this year as a pass rusher. The Panthers are heading in the right direction with some nice hires, but it might be a rough couple of years turning over this organization before the Panthers are challengers in the South once again.

PREDICTION: 5-11

BEST CASE: 7-9

WORST CASE: 4-12


Favourite Bets.

Exact Finishing Order –

  1. New Orleans Saints
  2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers
  3. Atlanta Falcons
  4. Carolina Panthers – 11/4

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: