Complete Post-Draft 2020 NFC Predictions
Analyzing each NFC team, ranking them among their division, and predicting their record for the 2020 season.
1. *Dallas Cowboys: 10-6: It is going to be close between the Cowboys and Eagles, but I think Dallas squeaks it out. Head coach Jason Garrett is now gone and replaced by Mike McCarthy. The 'Boys offense is suddenly looking pretty scary, as the trio of Dak Prescott, Ezekiel Elliot, and Amari Cooper is joined by draft pick CeeDee Lamb. Dallas had an excellent draft at many positions, and set themselves up to be a strong contender.
2. Philadelphia Eagles: 9-7: Carson Wentz does take too much blame, but the Eagles offense just looked lost a lot last year. They never got going in terms of their running game, and Zach Ertz is by far their best receiver, and he is a tight end. Drafting wide receiver Jalen Reagor should help a little. The Eagles are going to need another strong year from their defense, and for Carson Wentz to for once stay healthy.
3. New York Giants: 5-11: The Giants hired former New England Patriots wide receivers coach to be their head coach. It is a mind boggling decision, considering that the Patriots WR's last year were pretty bad. Daniel Jones is getting a lot more credit than he should be as well. While saying that, both he and superstar running back Saquon Barkley should benefit from the Giants focus on the offensive line in the draft.
4. Washington Redskins: 3-13: The Redskins brought in former Panthers QB Kyle Allen to compete with Dwayne Haskins for the starting role, but the problem is that both of them just aren't that good. If Washington thinks that one of them is the long term solution than they are extremely delusional. Adding Chase Young in the draft should be an immediate boost, but all around, this team is still one of the league's worst.
1. *Minnesota Vikings: 12-4: Finding a wide receiver as good as Justin Jefferson in the draft was huge for Minnesota. The Vikings are such a tough team to predict, because you really don't know what you're going to get. The ceiling is they contend for a Super Bowl, and their floor is that they miss the playoffs. Their defense gave up just 18.9 points per game last year though, and is one of the best all around groups in the NFC.
2. *Green Bay Packers: 10-6: The Packers not taking a wide receiver in the draft is a huge mistake. I see them taking a step back from last year, but they are still pretty well rounded. Aaron Jones is a great running back, and his QB, Aaron Rodgers continues to chugg along. At this point he is around top ten or so among NFL quarterbacks. The bottom line is though that regular season success is becoming irrelevant if Green Bay's playoff struggles continue.
3. Detroit Lions: 8-8: This might surprise people, but I think that the Lions are going to be much more competitive this coming season. A lot of their losses last year came at the hands of quarterbacks David Blough and Jeff Driskel. Their defense was also miserable, but has improved. Matthew Stafford is a top ten quarterback when healthy, and a full season from him would be huge, especially for head coach Matt Patricia's job.
4. Chicago Bears: 6-10: The story lines in Chicago will be all about whether Nick Foles will take Mitch Trubisky's job as the starting QB. Trubisky was pretty dreadful last year, and the Bears struggled to keep up a .500 record. They could just not beat any good teams last year, and that was almost always because they couldn't score against them. Their defense dropped a bit also, but is still one of the league's best.
1. *New Orleans Saints: 13-3: The Bucks are good, but they are not at the level of the Saints. While saying that though, Drew Brees might not have much longer to contend for another Super Bowl. Michael Thomas and Alvin Kamara are absolute studs, so this offense is still very dynamic. Adding Emmanuel Sanders takes some weight off of Thomas' shoulders as well. It is absolutely win now mode for New Orleans, and they should be the favorite in the NFC.
2. *Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 9-7: For the first time in a long time, there is energy around the Tampa Bay Buccaneers franchise. The Bucs offense is going to be a force to be reckoned with: Tom Brady at the helm, the best wide receiver duo in the game in Chris Godwin and Michael Thomas, and two very legit TE's in O.J. Howard and returnee from retirement, Rob Gronkowski. I just don't think it's enough though to push them into being a real Super Bowl contender.
3. Atlanta Falcons: 6-10: Atlanta suddenly finds themselves in a very tough division, but they should still be pretty competitive. Taking Dante Fowler and Todd Gurley from the Los Angeles Rams is huge, and Matt Ryan is still a top ten quarterback. The defense is weak though, and they have an extremely tough schedule. Despite ending last season on a very positive note, I don't see Atlanta contending for the playoffs next season.
4. Carolina Panthers: 5-11: Not even the best running back in the game in Christian McCaffrey will be able to solve all of the Panthers problems next year. Teddy Bridgewater is a good interim quarterback, but the Panthers need to start planning at that position for after him. Luke Kuechly retiring is a big blow. The Panthers defense was horrendous last year, so they went out and used all seven of their picks on that side of the ball. It was a strong draft for the future, but in the meantime, Carolina will struggle.
1. *San Francisco 49ers: 11-5: Last season was definitely a dream season for the 49ers (until they ran into Kansas City of course). It will be very tough to replicate something like that. Expect their defense to be stellar again, but their offense might not put up as many points as last year. Hopefully the running back by committee continues to work, but they will need another receiver to step up after George Kittle and Deebo Samuel.
2. *Seattle Seahawks: 10-6: Russell Wilson pretty much carried the Seahawks for a lot of last season, and was arguably even better than the league's MVP, Lamar Jackson. The Seahawks defense struggled a lot last year as well, giving up on average 24.9 PPG. Chris Carson does a ton of work at running back for them, and Tyler Lockett and D.K. Metcalf have proven to be a tough WR tandem though. After that, it falls off quickly.
3. Arizona Cardinals: 8-8: Kyler Murray went under the radar in a very strong season that earned him the Rookie of the Year award. The Cards franchise tagged running back Kenyan Drake, and a full season out of him would be huge. They also robbed Houston of superstar wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins, so this offense is looking pretty good. Their defense needs improvement though for them to make a run at this division.
4. Los Angeles Rams: 8-8: Just two years after an appearance in Super Bowl 53, the Rams find themselves floundering in a very tough division. Their once dominant defense has become pretty average, and their offense just lost Todd Gurley. Jared Goff is good but not great, especially considering his WR talent in Cooper Kupp and Robert Woods. The bottom line is that the Rams just aren't good enough anymore for this division.
* indicates a playoff team