AFC South 2012 NFL Preview – FootballFriday, September 7, 2012 23:58
2012 AFC South preview and predictions.
NFL 2012 Preview
I ain’t sayin’…I’m just sayin’…
- If Judge Berrigan rules in favor of the suspended Saints players tomorrow, it will be a deliberate smackdown and an indictment of Roger Goodell’s leadership.
- The Cowboys need to maintain the focus and intensity they showed in the season opener. Dez Bryant flashed his great potential and the Giants’ secondary got chewed up and spit out.
- Roger Goodell has offered to cut Jonathan Vilma’s suspension in half if he drops his lawsuit. If Goodell loses that suit, his tenure as NFL Commissioner will end with the 2012 season.
- It didn’t happen during Wednesday night’s game, but I guarantee it may happen more than once on Sunday–the replacement refs blow a call that determines the outcome of a game.
- I hope it does indeed happen and thus further erode Goodell’s credibility when the outcry to settle with the NFLPA becomes too loud to ignore.
- When you boil the refs’ money issue down, it amount to about $20,000.00 per team per game. In other words, nachos, hotdogs, beers, and popcorn for about four hundred fans per game.
- If I were a Cleveland fan, I might not be too sad Art Modell passed away, but he did let Cleveland keep their history and colors and brought football back to Baltimore.
- His work negotiating TV contracts that laid the foundation for the league’s unparalleled popularity should have been enough to warrant a place in Canton a long time ago…
Division Record: 26 – 38
2011 Record: 10 – 6
- I saw an interview with star Titan RB Chris Johnson during which he bragged about running a sub-four-second forty and that his main goal was to rush for 2500 yards.
- Not one word about his team’s goals and how he wanted to do anything to help them.
- Every Tennessee draft pick was selected for speed. 2nd round OLB Zach Brown–4.4 in the forty–could improve the defense more than rookies usually do.
- As will do first round receiver Kendall Weight, who was RG3′s main target at Baylor, for the offense. Not very tall, but lots of speed.
- Nose tackle and 3rd rounder Mike Martin runs a 4.8 forty.
- He weighs 315 pounds.
- How does Goodell square letting Titan WR and 10-time offender, Kenny Britt off with a one-game suspension against the four-game whammy he slapped on Big Ben for playing tonsil hockey in a nightclub bathroom?
- Tennessee sophomore QB Jake Locker makes his first start Sunday. With a new GM and head coach, a questionable defense, and not knowing which Chris Johnson will show up, The TaTa’s simply have too many important questions to answer in 2012.
Predicted Finish: 6 – 10
Major Story: Kenny Britt gets into a fight at a Wendy’s drive-thru–suspends himself.
2011 Record: 2 – 14
- The Horseshoes got some great Luck for the next decade. His arm may not be the howitzer coaches salivate over, but Andrew Luck has incredible tools any observer could see in less intense pre-season action.
- Before you kiss this season away for the Colts, remember that their closet didn’t just empty completely when Manning bolted for the Rockies.
- The major defensive challenge will be transitioning to a 3-4 under former Ratbird DC and new head coach Chuck Pagano.
- Offensively, Bruce Arians has made a career of bringing out the best in his quarterbacks.
- Which means opponents better not take Indy with Andrew Luck lightly.
- I know 2-14 demands a change, but Jim Caldwell was dealt a raw hand. When he won, it was because Tony Dungy had left him a great team–so they said. Manning left just as a rash of devastating injuries and age brought the Colts down–and Caldwell had to deal with the front office’s lack of foresight and mediocre drafting.
- I think the Colts fool more than a few teams this year…
Predicted Finish: 8 – 8
Major Story: Andrew Luck keeps the Colts in every game.
2011 Record: 5 – 11
- I like Mike Mularkey and respect his keeping interim HC Mel Tucker on staff.
- I like the hirings of Bob Bratkowski as OC and John Bonamego as Special Teams Coordinator.
- But was Mularkey the answer?
- What the Jags have lacked since the fan’s cried for Tom Coughlin’s dismissal is discipline–and Mike Mularkey, for all his offensive talent and vision, is anything but a disciplinarian.
- Despite his success in Atlanta, Mularkey’s offense never showed up in big games or looked like they had enough heart to overcome the game in, game out adversity that defines the NFL.
- There is some talent in all three phases of this team, but quarterback is a huge question mark and last year Blaine Gabbert looked like he didn’t have a clue of an answer.
Predicted Finish: 6 – 10
Major Story: Jaguars defense keeps them in games. Chad Henne subs for the benched Gabbert. Front office buys more tarp…
2011 Record: 6 – 10
- GM Rick Smith and HC Gary Kubiak were on watch last year and pulled through in the Manning-less AFC South with a division title.
- The Lone Steers beat a lot of good teams rather easily last year. They ran all over Pittsburgh and Atlanta…
- …But also lost to the Panthers and Colts.
- This year the schedule will be only a little tougher, but no divisions offer a good team a better opportunity to shoot for home field advantage than the AFC South and AFC East.
- 1st rounder Whitney Mercillus is one of those naturally pissed off kids who has something to prove.
- We think he and the Texans will prove a lot of teams aren’t as good as the Texans.
Predicted Finish: 12 – 4
Major Story: The Texans stampede through a weak AFC schedule en route to the top of the AFC heap.
Next Up: The AFC East
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