1. Green Bay Packers – The Defending Super Bowl Champions look even better this year than last year. Even though I didn’t predict for them to be back in the Super Bowl this year, I believe we’ll see them in the NFC Championship.
2. Baltimore Ravens – The Ravens defense is stellar as usual, but nobody is talking about how good Joe Flacco and their offense really is. If the Ravens had a top tier wide receiver they’d be killer all around, but I still like the Ravens to win the AFC this year.
3. Detroit Lions – At the beginning of the year I went out on a limb and picked a Lions-Ravens Super Bowl. As long as Stafford stays healthy and continues to get the ball to his playmakers like he is, I think my prediction will ring true.
5. Houston Texans – I picked the Texans to make the playoffs at the beginning of the year and caught a ton of heat just like with the Lions. But who’s laughing now? Arian Foster is just now regaining his health meaning the Texans are going to score even more points.
6. New Orleans Saints – Even without a true number one receiver or running back the Saints have a killer role-playing offense where anyone can step up. The defense offers a little cause for concern.
7. Buffalo Bills – This team is a complete surprise to even me. I knew Ryan Fitzpatrick was good, but Fred Jackson and this defense have stepped it up beyond what I thought they could do.
8. San Diego Chargers – The Chargers have a solid offense and defense with great playmakers, but Norv Turner is a horrible coach and could coach them out of the playoffs with the resurgence of the Raiders.
9. Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Josh Freeman hasn’t played as well as I thought he would this year, but Legarrette Blount has proven he is a feature back and their defense keeps them in games. All this helps Freeman lead his routine come from behind victories in the fourth quarter.
10. Tennessee Titans – The Titans have given up the least amount of points in the NFL and Matt Hasselbeck is going through a career resurgence now that he has some blocking. But who is he going to give the ball to with Kenny Britt out for the season?
11. San Francisco 49ers – When the rookie coach Jim Harbaugh announced Alex Smith as the starter I figured he was basically announcing he wanted to go winless and get his boy Andrew Luck in the draft next year. Just goes to show how good a coach Harbaugh really is and the Niners aren’t even playing their NFC West games yet.
12. New York Jets – The Jets would be better off throwing Keanu Reaves in at quarterback. Mark Sanchez is horrible, just like I said when the Jets traded up to pick him. The rest of the team has to carry his pretentious ass on their shoulders the rest of the year for them to make a playoff push.
13. Oakland Raiders – What a hire Hue Jackson has turned out to be. This team is really fun to watch with all of the speed they have on offense, a hard-hitting defense and Darren McFadden playing Wildcat. If the Raiders put the majority of their top picks to better use they would be a playoff lock.
14. New York Giants – The Giants defensive line is killer like usual and the injury prone Giants have managed to squeeze out three wins in the first quarter of the year. But I doubt Eli Manning can hold them above water.
15. Atlanta Falcons – The Falcons haven’t looked too hot offensively or defensively yet this season, but you know they have the pieces to come back and win the NFC South. I had them in the playoffs at the beginning of the year and that hasn’t changed.
16. Philadelphia Eagles – The Eagles have all the playmakers in the world, but when it comes down to it they need both of their lines up front to put up better performances or they’re not going anywhere this year. I think they’ll turn it around and win the division.
17. Pittsburgh Steelers – What happened to the Steelers offense? They’re defense is still playing well, but it needs to force some more turnovers. The offense just looks bad, Big Ben has never been one to have time in the pocket, but he’s taking quite a bit of hits this year.
18. Dallas Cowboys – The Cowboys offense is pretty electrifying when Tony Romo isn’t lobbing the ball up so soft a two-year old could intercept it. The ‘Boys don’t have a very good secondary either, but they have enough pieces to compete for a playoff spot.
19. Washington Redskins – The Redskins defense has looked great up to this point, about time after all of the money Dan Snyder has been throwing around. This team is almost reminiscent of the 2006-2007 Bears.
20. Chicago Bears – Speaking about the Bears, when will this team ever fix their offensive line? They’re defense isn’t looking as good as it did last year and if you ask me Devin Hester will have to return a TD every game for this team to make the playoffs.
21. Cincinnati Bengals – The Bengals and Andy Dalton are one of the biggest surprises to me this year. Dalton has been a beast as a rookie and the Bengals, jail birds and all, are playing with fire and heart.
22. Cleveland Browns – No, I don’t think Colt McCoy will ever be a good NFL quarterback and no this team doesn’t have any good playmakers outside of the disgruntled, but popular Peyton Hillis. But this team has still found a way to win a couple of games.
23. Arizona Cardinals – Does anyone else in Arizona agree now that the Kevin Kolb trade was a mistake? He has eight turnovers with only five touchdowns, which isn’t horrible, but you don’t trade Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and a second round pick for career backup.
24. Carolina Panthers – Cam Newton looks like a stud and Steve Smith can still burn. They have no shot at the playoffs, but they have promise for the future. And really, that is more than what can be said about some of these other teams.
25. Minnesota Vikings – The Vikings haven’t won a game yet, but they stay in most of them. Like normal, Adrian Peterson isn’t getting the ball enough, and they need to try Christian Ponder out soon.
26. Denver Broncos – When will the Broncos finally just give in and let Tim Tebow throw their season so they can go after Luck? I wouldn’t know where to start with this team, they are just a mess… good luck Coach Fox.
27. Jacksonville Jaguars – The Jaguars have a pitiful 39 points this year, It’ll be interesting to see how Gabbert develops throughout the year, but that’s the only reason to watch this team. The defense is solid, but they get tired being out on the field all day.
28. St. Louis Rams – They have just looked horrible. Yes they’ve had a lot of injuries, but they look like they don’t even want to play football outside of Sam Bradford. Bradford is a beast and he saves them in the ratings here a bit, but there’s a point when all the money they’ve spent on their offensive line needs to develop into progress. They need playmakers bad.
29. Indianapolis Colts – There is no doubt in my mind if Peyton Manning was playing this year the Colts would be a contender for a playoff spot, but without Manning this is just another bad team.
31. Miami Dolphins – Talk about a team that needs a quarterback. The Dolphins defense is pretty good, but their offense is completely horrid outside of a decent offensive line.
32. Kansas City Chiefs – The Chiefs lost their two best players in the first game of the season, but players are supposed to step up. Not here… I wonder if the Chiefs would take Luck if they end up with the first pick after spending all of that money on Matt Cassel.