2014 NFL Predictions

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Top Seeds: 1. Patriots 2. Broncos 3. Colts 4. Bengals 5. Steelers 6. Chargers

Wild Card: Colts over Chargers, Steelers over Bengals

Divisional Round: Patriots over Steelers, Broncos over Colts

AFC Championship: Patriots over Broncos


Top Seeds: 1. Packers 2. Saints 3. Seahawks 4. Eagles 5. Panthers 6. Bears

Wild Card: Seahawks over Bears, Panthers over Eagles

Divisional Round: Packers over Panthers, Saints over Seahawks

NFC Championship: Saints over Packers

Super Bowl

Patriots over Saints 31-21




Starting in the AFC, it looks like everything is stacked for the Patriots to take the number one seed in 2014. A schedule where their most difficult game, vs. Broncos, will again be in Foxboro. Their next two toughest games however will be on the road, @ Green Bay and @ San Diego. But with the strengthening of the secondary over the offseason (see Revis, Darrelle) it would seem that Belichick has finally at least somewhat recreated the kind of defense that won him three Super Bowls.


For the Broncos things won’t be so easy. Having to play all of the NFC West is not an easy task for any team, never mind one coming off of a pretty embarrassing Super Bowl loss. Traveling to Seattle early in the season will be a good benchmark for where they are.


Then again it’s  still the Patriots and Broncos conference and they will once again both easily make it to the championship, only this time it will be in Foxboro.


On the NFC side, it’s time for a reality check for Seattle. With new rules and emphasis on defensive holding and pass interface, the kings of committing those penalties without getting called (AKA The Legion of Boom) will come crashing back to Earth as they finally get called for those. Seattle games will probably be unwatchable at the beginning of the season as Richard Sherman and co. adjust to playing the game cleanly. They still manage to win the division but get rolled by the Saints in the second round.


The return of Aaron Rodgers means the return of the Packers to the conference title game, but the lack of offensive weapons behind Jordy Nelson means the Saints make it Glendale to meet New England in the Super Bowl.


The Patriots lead the Saints by 3 with under a minute left. Drew Brees is driving his team down the field. On a third down at midfield with 50 seconds left, Brees looks for Brandin Cooks but the pass is picked off by Darrelle Revis who returns it for a touchdown and the Patriots exorcise the demons in Arizona after their last trip their for a Super Bowl in the 2007 season, and take home number four.




Tebowmania makes a stop in Foxboro

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Tebow during his short stint with the NY Jets. Tebow spent most of him time in the big apple on the bench

In the biggest piece of unsurprising news in recent memory, Bill Belichick finally pulled the trigger on his boy, Tim Tebow. Tebow comes in to a situation that is best suited for him, as there are zero expectations for him to be a starter at quarterback in New England. In reality, he probably won’t be playing much QB at all while in a Patriots’ uniform.

ESPN and all of social networking exploded when the news broke (first from Ed Werder of ESPN) that the Patriot’s would be signing the former Jets’ benchwarmer. With that being said, the writing has been on the wall for this move for some time now.

Tebow visited Foxboro as part of his pre-draft tour in 2010 prior to being picked by the Broncos in the first round. The man who had the final decision in picking Tebow in Denver was Josh McDaniels, the then head coach of the team. McDaniels has since re-joined the Patriots as their offensive coordinator. The connections were all there for Tebow to be heading to New England; the question now becomes what to do with him.

Tim Tebow is not a good quarterback; however, he is an outstanding football player. You can say whatever you want about his throwing mechanics and how awful they are (they are awful) but the man can flat-out win football games. Bill Belichick likes to have smart, tough players in his locker room who know how to win, and Tebow certainly fills that bill. Can Tebow play a different postion? Can he play a little tight end, maybe a little full back? He has the size and running ability, the question becomes if he is willing to do so. If he wants to have success in the NFL, he is going to have to. Another key attribute that coach Bellichick always looks for in his players is versatility, and an athlete like Tebow might be one of the most versatile players in recent memory.


Big Top Tim is heading to Foxboro, but the circus won't last long

Big Top Tim is heading to Foxboro, but the circus won’t last long

Everywhere Tebow has gone, the circus has seemed to follow him. ESPN has had a fascination with the man ever since he first started having some success in Denver. Tebow will be in Foxboro tomorrow for mandatory mini-camp, and you can be sure that the circus will be there as well. Here’s the thing though, it won’t be nearly as big as in the past. The first day Tebow landed in New York, the Jets called a press conference for him, feeding the monster that is the media circus. You can be sure that won’t be happening in New England. You won’t be hearing from Tebow much if at all for the next few months, Tebowmania will not be an issue in Foxboro as it was in New York and Denver.

At the end of the day, the question becomes “why not?”. Tebow is one hell of an athlete and a good person to have in the locker room as long as the media isn’t hounding him. He can play some snaps at quarterback on the third team in practice and try out some new spots. The Patriots are taking zero by picking Tebow up. He isn’t going to be fighting for a starting job, as that is held firmly by the greatest living American. So, as a Patriot fan who has talked some trash about Tim Tebow in the past, I say “why not?”

Carradine presents some phenomenal value

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Reports early this morning are that Tank Carradine of Florida State could be getting ready to take a free fall today on the second day of the NFL draft. One report compared the state of Carradine’s knee injury to that of Da’Quan Bowers a couple of years ago. Bowers, who was picked 51st overall by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2011, was originally thought of as a top-10 talent before issues with his knee arose. Carradine hurt his knee in November, causing him to miss the last two games of the season.

The story with Carradine is a little bit different. Leading up to the draft, Carradine wasn’t thought of as the best player at his position from his school. That honor went to Bjoern Werner, who was picked last night by the Colts at #24. There was some talk just days before the clock was started by the commissioner though that the Carradine was jumping up on some people’s draft boards, and could possibly even go before his FSU teammate.

In his last two seasons with the Seminoles, Carradine racked up about 16 sacks and 21 tackles for loss. Carradine is also a very intimidating looking player at 6’5” and about 260 pounds; he has the size and strength to play multiple positions. Carradine did not workout at the combine or even at his pro day aside from doing the bench press.

Carradine is a natural pass rusher; he has some great power, good quickness and agility. If his knee checks out, he could be the steal of the draft for the team that decides to take the risk on him. Medical issues like this always come out of the woodwork around this time of the draft, and it is up to the individual teams to decide now if Carradine is worth taking the risk.

With this new information, I’d be surprised to see Tank go anywhere earlier than the very end of the second round, if even then. There are plenty of teams though that could use pass rush help who might take a flier on him, look at a team like the Patriots or Broncos to take the risk on him. Both of those teams are also still in the Freeney/Abraham free agent sweepstakes.