NFL Midseason Report

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2014-2015 NFL Midseason Report 

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NFL logo Shield to Salute Service

 

It is hard to believe the NFL regular season is already halfway over. There have been many surprises thus far, including the Cowboys being as successful as they’ve been (their record is 6-3), the Lions and Dolphins having the dominant defenses of the league, and the struggle of the Bears, 49ers and the entire NFC South division.

 

Although many of the divisions are still up for grabs, it is very hard to say what some of the more premier teams will do to finish out the season.

 

A perfect example of this is the competitive AFC North: all four teams are above .500, and  only separated by 1.5  games. The division will in all likelihood be decided in the final few weeks of the season.

 

Looking at the NFC, a few teams really stick out to me. Notably, the Detroit Lions: They have  the top defense (statistically) in the entire league, along with a lethal passing offense thanks in large part to arguably the best free agent acquisition in the offseason in wide receiver Golden Tate. Tate has been paired with the all-pro Calvin Johnson, and a versatile backfield with the strong Joique Bell and the shifty Reggie Bush. I see the Lions continuing to ride their strong defense and passing offense to a potential division crown, as they’ve already beaten Green Bay once.

 

Another team of note is Philadelphia. The Eagles started off a bit shaky this season, having to come back in the second half in each of their first three games to win. However, they currently sit atop the NFC East at 6-2, a half game ahead of the Cowboys.

 

Both of these teams face similar situations. Just this past weekend, Eagles quarterback Nick Foles injured his clavicle in a win against Houston. Early speculation indicates Foles will be out until early December, with former Jet, Mark Sanchez filling in.

 

Meanwhile, the Cowboys’ starting quarterback Tony Romo missed this past weekends game against the Cardinals due to back problems. Both Dallas and Philadelphia have had surprisingly good defenses so far, and both rely heavily on running the ball on offense. It will be interesting to see which of these two rivals will take the division title.

 

Finally, we have the surprising 7-1 Arizona Cardinals. The Cardinals have put together one hell of a season thus far due to the fact that they have faced so many injury problems. In the preseason, they lost all-pro defensive end Darnell Dockett for the season. Shortly after, they lost starting quarterback Carson Palmer for a few weeks, but still managed to win every game that he missed except for one. Add in another all-pro defensive end Calais Campbell for a few weeks, thus diminishing their defense even more. The Cardinals, though, have been able to stick it out because of their coach, Bruce Arians, and their consistent tenacity on defense.

 

My predictions for NFC playoff picture are as followed: 1st Seed- Green Bay, 2nd Seed- Arizona  3rd Seed- Dallas, 4th Seed- New Orleans, 5th Seed- Detroit, and 6th Seed- Seattle.

 

In the AFC, a few teams stick out to me for very different reasons. First off are the New England Patriots. The Patriots just came off of a HUGE win at home vs. rival Denver, and are looking unstoppable on both offense and defense, led by future Hall of Fame quarterback, Tom Brady.

Next are the AFC South leading Indianapolis Colts.

 

The Colts are led by potential MVP Andrew Luck, who is having a record breaking type season, but the Colts’ woes come on the defensive side. They gave up over five-hundred yards of passing to Steeler quarterback Ben Roethlisberger last week, and just recently gave up over three-hundred and fifty yards to Eli Manning in Monday night’s win over the Giants.

 

Finally, the San Diego Chargers. The Chargers started out of the gates guns-a-blazin’, but have recently cooled off considerably. With a tough loss at Denver two weeks ago, and a humiliating shutout by the Dolphins this past weekend, the Chargers are sitting at 5-4, and outside of the playoff picture, with both their offense and defense struggling.

 

My predictions for the AFC playoff picture are as followed: 1st seed- New England, 2nd seed- Denver, 3rd seed- Indianapolis, 4th seed- Pittsburgh, 5th seed- Kansas City, and 6th seed- Cincinnati.

 

Looking even further ahead, Super Bowl XLIX will be between the Patriots and the Packers, with the Patriots winning their fourth Super Bowl since 2000.
My choice for league MVP will be Andrew Luck, offensive player of the year will be DeMarco Murray, defensive player of the year will be J.J. Watt, and coach of the year will be Bruce Arians.