Greetings from the Hoodwood where the fantasy teams are getting ready to get back to the championship ways
More of the NFL Preview Lets look East where the more things change…
New England Patriots
2013: 12-4 Champs lost to Denver in Conference Championship
Coach: Bill Belichick 163-61 in 14 Seasons in New England, 199-105 in 19 Seasons with Cleveland & New England; 218-114 overall
Man on the Hot Seat: Stevan Ridley needs to be more a force in the running game, 774 yards won’t be enough to balance the load of the offense
Fast Facts: Belichick’s 163 wins is more than triple the wins of the next winningest coach Mike Holovak
The Patriots have had one losing season in the Belichick tenure his first the 13 straight winning seasons, they had 18 winning seasons in the 40 years before Belichick arrived
The Patriot Way: The Patriots have been the class of the division and are a shoo in for at least 10 wins, as long as Brady has his health, the Pats are the team to beat. Their defense is still suspect and their running game has always been subpar but they are the Pats and there isn’t a team in the division that matches up well enough to beat them out.
2013: 8-8, Missed Playoffs
Coach: Joe Philbin, 2nd Season in Miami 8-8 overall
Man on the Hot Seat: Ryan Tannehill, he has to see his peers in Dalton, RG3, Luck and Wilson have all made the playoffs and he hasn’t come close
Fast Facts: The Dolphins have missed the playoffs in 11 of the past 12 seasons. Before this they had never missed the playoffs more than 4 seasons in a row
The Dolphins have only had a 1000 yard rusher 12 times in their team history
Big Fish or small tuna: Pushing past the mess that was the Martin-Incognito the Dolphins are a decently talented team, but lack a big name on either side of the ball. Tannehill is on the spot to assert himself more on the offense while a non-descript defense needs to play better.
New York Jets
2013: 8-8 Missed Playoffs (worst season since 2005)
Coach: Rex Ryan 42-38 in 6 Seasons in New York 46-40 overall
Man on the Hot Seat: Ryan, he can’t have another mediocre season and get away with it in Gotham
Fast Facts: The Jets 290 points were the 4th fewest in the NFL in 2013, the three teams scoring fewer points had 10 wins combined
Gotham Gridiron: The Jets are an overhyped mediocre squad, they might get up for the Pats but they fall asleep at the switch way too often, I’m not convinced that the grinning jeering Ryan will ever change and that the Jets will do nothing to change their perception.
2013: 6-10 Missed playoffs
Coach: Doug Marrone 2nd Season 6-10 overall
Man on the Hot Seat: EJ Manuel, the Bills QB needs to grow and fast, the
Fast Facts: The Bills are the only team in the NFL to have not played in the playoffs in the 20th Century (Even the Browns and Raiders have made the playoffs since the turn of the century, in 2002)
B-Lo Football: The Bills are stuck in a rut, they are in a weak division but don’t have the chops to pass the other teams in the division much less take on the Pats. They have the tools to be sure, but one can’t be sure if they can put it all together. The loss of their long time beloved owner puts the team’s long term future in western New York in doubt, but the Bills are just stuck in a bad situation.
2013: 7-9 Wild Card lost to New Orleans in Wild Card Round
Coach: Chip Kelly 2nd Season 10-6 in 1 season in Philadelphia
Man on the Hot Seat: Nick Foles, the job is his as the Eagle QB how will he handle it?
Fast Facts: The Eagles haven’t had a losing season since 2006
Philly Phootball: Chip Kelly and the fastbreaking Eagle offense are not to be trifled with. Start with the accurate Foles at the helm and dangerous running backs Shady McCoy and Darren Sproles seemingly everywhere, the Eagles will score points. They are good enough to win a weak NFC East again but how deep can they get in January?
New York Giants
2013: 7-9 missed playoffs
Coach: Tom Coughlin; 90-70 overall in 10 seasons in New York, 98-73 overall, 170-137 in 17 total seasons overall in New York and Jacksonville
Man on the Hot Seat: Eli Manning, if he throws 25 interceptions again 2 rings or no he and Coughlin might be unemployed
Fast Fact: The Giants have never had back to back losing seasons during Coughlin’s tenure
Big Blue Football: If there was a rebound waiting to happen, it’s the G-Men. I still have yet to embrace the laconic style of Eli Manning but I can’t count a Coughlin coached team out.
2013: 8-8 Missed playoffs
Coach: Jason Garrett 29-27 overall in 3+ seasons in Dallas
Man on the Hot Seat: Jason Garrett, HA! You thought I was going to say QB Tony Romo. Romo can only do so much the Pokes mediocrity is Garrett’s responsibility
Fast Facts: The Cowboys 3 straight 8-8 seasons are the longest .500 streak in team history
Big D Football: The Pokes and their fans talk big but the reality is that a solid offense can only cover up just so much for a horrid defense that is marginally better than the putrid squad of last year. Jones can bluster all he wants about respect but the Pokes are no better than a 9-7 team, and in a loaded NFC that won’t get them to the playoffs.
2013: 3-13 missed playoffs
Coach: Jay Gruden, 1st Season
Man on the Hot Seat: Robert Griffin, III. After a poor sophomore year the electric QB needs to make a stand
Fast Facts: Only the Vikings gave up more than Washington’s 478 points last year and only Jacksonville had a bigger point differential…and the Vikings beat Washington last year
Capital Football: A new regime in DC and old problems, a so-so running game, a defense that gets no better and continued problems with the development of RG3, who is the starter but if Washington starts 1-3 again…uh oh.
Ill add more as the day goes. Until next post fellow sports fans…