Archive for August, 2017

NFC West Outlook

Posted: August 31, 2017 in NFL
Arizona Cardinals

The Cardinals finished last season 7-8-1, their first losing season of Bruce Arians tenure. Arians will return for his fifth season with the team. Harold Goodwin continues his role as offensive coordinator with the team. Goodwin has worked under Arians for 11 consecutive seasons. James Bettcher will enter his third season as defensive coordinator for the Cardinals.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 21st Overall, 14th Rushing, 27th Passing

Defense – 3rd Overall, 7th Rushing, 3rd Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: G Tony Bergstrom, DE/OLB Jarvis Jones, LB Karlos Dansby, S Antoine Bethea, K Phil Dawson

Arrivals: TE Darren Fells, G Evan Mathis, G Earl Watford, DE/DT Calais Campbell, DE/OLB Alex Okafor, ILB Kevin Minter, CB Marcus Cooper, S Tony Jefferson, S D.J. Swearinger, K Chandler Catanzaro

Top Draft Picks: LB Hasson Reddick (Temple, #13 overall), S Budda Baker (Washington, #36 overall), WR Chad Williams (Grambling State, #98 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Carson Palmer

Offensive Player of the Year: David Johnson

Defensive Player of the Year: Patrick Peterson

Other Notable players: Larry Fitzgerald, Jared Veldheeer, Chandler Jones, Tyrann Mathieu

Strongest position group: Offensive skill players

Weakest position group: Front seven

Los Angeles Rams

The Rams finished their first season in Los Angeles at 4-12 and parted ways with Jeff Fisher during the season. They hired young Sean McVay in the offseason. McVay served as offensive coordinator for the Redskins the last three seasons. McVay brought in Matt LaFluer to serve as offensive coordinator. LaFluer served as the quarterbacks coach for the Atlanta Falcons during the 2015 and 2016 seasons. The Rams also hired Wade Phillips as defensive coordinator. Phillips, of course, led the excellent Broncos defense the last two seasons and has been coaching in the NFL for 39 seasons.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 32nd Overall, 32nd Rushing, 32nd Passing

Defense – 15th Overall, 6th Rushing, 20th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Case Keenum, RB Benny Cunningham, WR Kenny Britt, WR Brian Quick, TE Lance Kendricks, OT Greg Robinson, C Tim Barnes, DE William Hayes, DE Eugene Sims, S T.J. McDonald

Arrivals: RB Lance Dunbar, WR Robert Woods, OT Andrew Whitworth, C John Sullivan, DT Tyrunn Walker, DE/OLB Connor Barwin, CB Nickell Robey-Coleman, CB Kayvon Webster

Top Draft Picks: TE Gerald Everett (South Alabama, #44 overall), WR Cooper Kupp (Eastern Washington, #69 overall), S John Johnson (Boston College, #91 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Aaron Donald

Offensive Player of the Year: Andrew Whitworth

Defensive Player of the Year: Mo Alexander

Other Notable players: Todd Gurley, Sammy Watkins, Lamarcus Joyner, Trumaine Johnson

Strongest position group: Secondary

Weakest position group: Quarterback

San Francisco 49ers

The 49ers officially ended the Chip Kelly experiment after their 2-14 season, and hired Kyle Shanahan, son of Mike, as head coach. Shanahan served as the Falcons offensive coordinator for the last two seasons. Shanahan will call the plays and the 49ers have not hired an offensive coordinator. Robert Saleh is the new defensive coordinator for the 49ers. Saleh previously served as the Jaguars’ linebackers coach for the last three seasons.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 23rd Overall, 9th Rushing, 28th Passing

Defense – 28th Overall, 31st Rushing, 28th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Colin Kaepernick, QB Blaine Gabbert, RB Shaun Draughn, RB DuJuan Harris, WR Torrey Smith, WR Quinton Patton, DT Glenn Dorsey, ILB Gerald Hodges, ILB Nick Bellore, ILB Michael Wilhoite, CB Tramaine Brock, CB K’Waun Williams, S Antoine Bethea, K Phil Dawson

Arrivals: QB Brian Hoyer, QB Matt Barkley, RB Tim Hightower, FB Kyle Juszczyk, WR Pierre Garcon, WR Marquise Goodwin, WR Aldrick Robinson, TE Logan Paulsen, C Jeremy Zuttah, C Tim Barnes, DE/OLB Elvis Dumervil, OLB Dekoda Watson, OLB Malcolm Smith, ILB Brock Coyle, S Don Jones, K Robbie Gould

Top Draft Picks: DE Solomon Thomas (Stanford, #3 overall), LB Rueben Foster (Alabama, #31 overall), CB Ahkello Witherspoon (Colorado, #66 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Brian Hoyer

Offensive Player of the Year: Pierre Garcon

Defensive Player of the Year: NaVorro Bowman

Other Notable players: Carlos Hyde, Joe Staley, Eric Reid, Jimmie Ward, DeForest Buckner

Strongest position group: Front seven

Weakest position group: Offensive line

Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks finished last season 10-5-1 and won the NFC West for the third time in four years. Pete Carroll will enter his eighth season as head coach for Seattle. Darrell Bevell will lead the Seahawks defense for the seventh consecutive season. Kris Richard will return for his third season as defensive coordinator.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 16th Overall, 22nd Rushing, 14th Passing

Defense – 5th Overall, 3rd Rushing, 13th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: FB Marcel Reece, TE Brandon Williams, OT Bradley Sowell, DE Damontre Williams, DT Tony McDaniel, NT John Jenkins, OLB Michael Morgan, S Steven Terrell, K Steven Hauschka

Arrivals: RB Eddie Lacy, G Luke Joeckel, G Oday Aboushi, ILB Michael Wilhoite, ILB Terrance Garvin, ILB Arthur Brown, S Bradley McDougald, K Blair Walsh

Top Draft Picks: DT Malik McDowell (Michigan State, #35 overall), C Ethan Pocic (LSU, #58 overall), DB Shaquil Griffin (UCF, #90 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Russell Wilson

Offensive Player of the Year: Doug Baldwin

Defensive Player of the Year: Kam Chancellor

Other Notable players: Jimmy Graham, Earl Thomas, Richard Sherman, Bobby Wagner, Michael Bennett

Strongest position group: Secondary

Weakest position group: Offensive line

nFC West Preseason Projections
Team Projected Record 90% Confidence Interval Odds to win Division
Seahawks 9-7 5.5-10.5 12.0-4.0 49.4%
Cardinals 9-7 5.4-10.6 11.5-4.5 48.0%
Rams 6-10 2.3-13.6 8.8-7.2 1.5%
49ers 6-10 2.2-13.8 8.6-7.4 1.1%

 

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2017 AFC West Outlook

Posted: August 31, 2017 in NFL
Denver Broncos

The Broncos finished 9-7 and failed to win the AFC West for the first time in five seasons. Vance Joseph is the new head coach for the Broncos, replacing the retired Gary Kubiak. Offensive coordinator Mike McCoy returns to Denver after spending four seasons as head coach for the Chargers. Joe Woods was promoted to defensive coordinator following Wade Phillips’ departure. Woods previously served as the Broncos defensive backs coach.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 28th Overall, 29th Rushing, 22nd Passing

Defense – 1st Overall, 21st Rushing, 1st Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: WR Jordan Norwood, OT Russell Okung, DE/DT Vance Walker, NT Sylvester Williams, DE/OLB DeMarcus Ware, LB Dekoda Watson, CB Kayvon Webster

Arrivals: OT Menelik Watson, G Ronald Leary, DT Zach Kerr, DT Domata Peko

Top Draft Picks: OT Garett Bolles (Utah, #20 overall), DE DeMarcus Walker (Florida State, #51 overall), WR Carlos Henderson (Louisiana Tech, #82 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Von Miller

Offensive Player of the Year: Emmanuel Sanders

Defensive Player of the Year: Chris Harris

Other Notable players: Aqib Talib, Brandon Marshall, C.J. Anderson, Demaryius Thomas

Strongest position group: Secondary

Weakest position group: Quarterback

Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs won the AFC West last year with a 12-4 record and lost in the divisional round of the playoffs. Andy Reid will be entering his fifth season as head coach of the Chiefs after making the playoffs in three of his first four years there. Matt Nagy is the new offensive coordinator for the Chiefs after serving as co-offensive coordinator with Brad Childress las season. Bob Sutton will enter his fifth year as the Chiefs defensive coordinator.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 13th Overall, 19th Rushing, 10th Passing

Defense – 14th Overall, 25th Rushing, 7th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Nick Foles, RB Jamaal Charles, RB Knile Davis, WR Jeremy Maclin, DE/DT Jaye Howard, DE/DT Kendall Reyes, NT Dontari Poe

Arrivals: RB C.J. Spiller, TE Gavin Escobar, NT Bennie Logan

Top Draft Picks: QB Patrick Mahomes (Texas Tech, #10 overall), DE Tanoh Kpassagnon (Villanova, #59 overall), RB Kareem Hunt (Toledo, #86 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Alex Smith

Offensive Player of the Year: Travis Kelce

Defensive Player of the Year: Eric Berry

Other Notable players: Justin Houston, Marcus Peters, Chris Jones, Ron Parker, Tyreek Hll

Strongest position group: Front seven

Weakest position group: Offensive skill players

Los Angeles Chargers

The Chargers finished last season 5-11 and last place in the AFC West for a second straight year. Anthony Lynn, who served as Bills assistant head coach and running backs coach from 2015 to 2016, is the new head coach of the Chargers. Ken Whisenhunt will return as offensive coordinator for his third season with the team. Gus Bradley moves on from Jacksonville as defensive coordinator of the Jaguars.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 18th Overall, 24th Rushing, 15th Passing

Defense – 7th Overall, 15th Rushing, 9th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB Danny Woodhead, WR Stevie Johnson, OT King Dunlap, G D.J. Fluker, ILB Manti Te’o, CB Brandon Flowers

Arrivals: RB Kenjon Barner, OT Russell Okung, S Tre Boston

Top Draft Picks: WR Mike Williams (Clemson, #7 overall), G Forrest Lamp (Western Kentucky, #38 overall), G Dan Feeney (Indiana, #71 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Philip Rivers

Offensive Player of the Year: Keenan Allen

Defensive Player of the Year: Melvin Ingram

Other Notable players: Melvin Gordon, Joey Bosa, Jahleel Addae, Casey Hayward

Strongest position group: Offensive skill players

Weakest position group: Offensive line

Oakland Raiders

The Raiders finished last season 10-4 and lost in the wild card round after an injury to Derek Carr late in the season. Jack Del Rio will enter his third year as head coach of the Raiders. Todd Downing was promoted to offensive coordinator for the Raiders after serving for two seasons as quarterbacks coach. Ken Norton Jr. will enter his third season as Raiders defensive coordinator.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 8th Overall, 16th Rushing, 4th Passing

Defense – 22nd Overall, 17th Rushing, 25th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB Latavius Murray, WR Andre Holmes, TE Mychal Rivera, OT Menelik Watson, DT Stacy McGee, OLB Malcolm Smith, ILB Perry Riley, CB D.J. Hayden, S Nate Allen, S Brynden Trawick

Arrivals: QB E.J. Manuel, WR/KR Cordarelle Patterson, TE Jared Cook, OT Marshall Newhouse, OLB Jelani Jenkins

Top Draft Picks: CB Gareon Conley (Ohio State, #24 overall), S Obi Melifonwu (Connecticut, #56 overall), DT Eddie Vanderdoes (UCLA, #88 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Derek Carr

Offensive Player of the Year: Kelechi Osemele

Defensive Player of the Year: Khalil Mack

Other Notable players: Rodney Hudson, Sean Smith, Bruce Irvin, Amari Cooper, Marshawn Lynch

Strongest position group: Quarterback

Weakest position group: Front seven

AFC West Preseason Projections
Team Projected Record 90% Confidence Interval Odds to win Division
Chiefs 9-7 5.4-10.6 11.9-4.1 50.6%
Broncos 9-7 4.8-11.2 11.5-4.5 32.4%
Raiders 7-9 3.4-12.6 10.1-5.9 8.3%
Chargers 7-9 3.5-12.5 10.1-5.9 8.7%

 

2017 AFC South Outlook

Posted: August 30, 2017 in NFL

Houston Texans

The Texans finished last season 9-7 for the third straight year season under Bill O’ Brien. Mike Vrabel will enter his first season as defensive coordinator after spending the last three seasons the Texans linebackers coach.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 30th Overall, 27th Rushing, 30th Passing

Defense – 9th Overall, 18th Rushing, 5th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Brock Osweiler, RB Jonathan Grimes, G Oday Aboushi, G Tony Bergstrom, DE/DT Antonio Smith, NT Vince Wilfork, DE/OLB John Simon, CB A.J. Bouye, S Quintin Demps

Arrivals: OT Breno Giacomini

Top Draft Picks: QB Deshaun Watson (Clemson, #12 overall), LB Zach Cunningham (Vanderbilt, #57 overall), RB D’Onta Foreman (Texas, #89 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: J.J. Watt

Offensive Player of the Year: DeAndre Hopkins

Defensive Player of the Year: Whitney Mercilus

Other Notable players: Johnathan Joseph, Jadaveon Clowney, Lamar Miller, Benandrick McKinney

Strongest position group: Front seven

Weakest position group: Quarterback

Indianapolis Colts

The Colts finished last season 8-8 and missed the playoffs for the second consecutive year. Chuck Pagano will begin his sixth season as Colts head coach. Rob Chudzinski will enter his second season as offensive coordinator for the Colts. Ted Monachino will also enter his second season as defensive coordinator.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 12th Overall, 10th Rushing, 17th Passing

Defense – 29th Overall, 32nd Rushing, 26th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB Robert Turbin, TE Dwayne Allen, G Joe Reitz, G Hugh Thornton, DE/DT Arthur Jones, NT Zach Kerr, DE/OLB Trent Cole, DE/OLB Erik Walden, ILB D’Qwell Jackson, CB Patrick Robinson, CB Darryl Morris, S Mike Adams, P Pat McAfee

Arrivals: RB Christine Michael, WR Kamar Aiken, TE Brandon Williams, C Brian Schwenke, DE/DT Margus Hunt, NT Johnathan Hankins, NT Al Woods, DE/OLB Jabaal Sheard, DE/OLB John Simon, ILB Sean Spence, ILB Jon Bostic, P Jeff Locke

Top Draft Picks: S Malik Hooker (Ohio State, #15 overall), CB Quincy Wilson (Florida, #46 overall), DE Tarell Basham (Ohio, #80 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Andrew Luck

Offensive Player of the Year: T.Y. Hilton

Defensive Player of the Year: Vontae Davis

Other Notable players: Frank Gore, Anthony Castonzo, Darius Butler, John Simon, Jabaal Sheard

Strongest position group: Quarterback

Weakest position group: Secondary

Jacksonville Jaguars

The Jaguars finished last season 3-13: their sixth consecutive season with a losing record. Doug Marrone took over the head coaching position after the Jaguars fired Gus Bradley. Marrone will enter his first official year as Jaguars head coach. Nathaniel Hackett is entering his first year as offensive coordinator for the Jaguars after a few years as the quarterbacks coach. Todd Wash will enter his second season as the defensive coordinator for the Jaguars.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 27th Overall, 28th Rushing, 23rd Passing

Defense – 12th Overall, 12th Rushing, 15th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB Denard Robinson, WR Bryan Walters, TE Julius Thomas, OT Kelvin Beachum, G Luke Joeckel, DE/DT Jared Odrick, DE/DT Tyson Alualu, DT Roy Miller, DT Sen’Derrick Marks, OLB Dan Skuta, CB Prince Amukamara, CB Davon House, S John Cyprien

Arrivals: TE Mychal Rivera, OT Branden Albert, G Earl Watford, DE/DT Calais Campbell, DT Stefan Charles, OLB Lerentee McCray, ILB Audie Cole, ILB Josh McNary, CB A.J. Bouye, S Barry Church

Top Draft Picks: RB Leonard Fournette (LSU, #4 overall), OT Cam Robinson (Alabama, #34 overall), DE Dawuane Smoot (Illinois, #68 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Calais Campbell

Offensive Player of the Year: Allen Robinson

Defensive Player of the Year: A.J. Bouye

Other Notable players: Jalen Ramsey, Paul Posluszny, Leonard Fournette, Barry Church

Strongest position group: Front seven

Weakest position group: Quarterback

Tennessee Titans

The Titans finished last season at 9-7 in Mike Mularkey’s first full year as head coach. Legendary coach Dick LeBeau will begin his third season as Titans defensive coordinator. Terry Robiksie will enter his second season as the Titans offensive coordinator.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 9th Overall, 8th Rushing, 9th Passing

Defense – 24th Overall, 10th Rushing, 27th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: WR Kendall Wright, OT Byron Bell, TE Anthony Fasano, G Chance Warmack, C Brian Schwenke, NT Al Woods, ILB Sean Spence, CB Jason McCourty, CB Brice McCain, CB Antwon Blake, S Rashad Johnson, S Daimion Stafford

Arrivals: WR Eric Decker, WR/KR Eric Weems, G Tim Lelito, NT Sylvester Williams, LB Darren Bates, CB Logan Ryan, S John Cyprien, S Brynden Trawick

Top Draft Picks: WR Corey Davis (Western Michigan, #5 overall), CB Adoree’ Jackson (USC, #18 overall), WR Taywan Taylor (Western Kentucky, #72 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Marcus Mariota

Offensive Player of the Year: DeMarco Murray

Defensive Player of the Year: Logan Ryan

Other Notable players: Delanie Walker, Eric Decker, Taylor Lewan, Jack Conklin, Jonathan Cyprien, Brian Orakpo, Jurrell Casey

Strongest position group: Offensive line

Weakest position group: Quarterback

NFC South Preseason Projections

Team Projected Record 90% Confidence Interval Odds to win Division
Colts 8-8 5.3-10.7 12.0-4.0 38.6%
Titans 8-8 5.1-10.9 11.8-4.2 34.3%
Jaguars 8-8 5.3-10.7 11.7-4.3 33.9%
Texans 7-9 4.5-11.5 11.1-4.9 23.8%

 

2017 NFC South Outlook

Posted: August 30, 2017 in NFL
Atlanta Falcons

The Falcons, NFC Champions in 2016, went 11-5 and won the division in Dan Quinn’s second year as head coach. Quinn will enter his third year with a 19-13 record in his first two years. The Falcons lost OC Kyle Shanahan to the 49ers. Steve Sarkisian, former offensive coordinator of the Alabama Crimson Tide, will replace Shanahan as the new offensive coordinator. Marquand Manuel will enter his third season as the defensive coordinator for the Falcons.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 1st Overall, 6th Rushing, 1st Passing

Defense – 26th Overall, 28th Rushing, 18th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: FB Patrick DiMarco, WR Aldrick Robinson, WR Eric Weems, TE Jacob Tamme, G Chris Chester, DE Dwight Freeney, DE Tyson Jackson, DT Jonathan Babineaux, OLB Sean Weatherspoon, ILB Paul Worrilow

Arrivals: FB Derrick Coleman, WR Andre Roberts, G Hugh Thornton, DE Jack Crawford, NT Dontari Poe

Top Draft Picks: DE Takkarist McKinley (UCLA, #26 overall), LB Duke Riley (LSU, #75 overall), G Sean Harlow (Oregon State, #136 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Matt Ryan

Offensive Player of the Year: Julio Jones

Defensive Player of the Year: Desmond Trufant

Other Notable players: Devonta Freeman, Alex Mack, Keanu Neal, Vic Beasley, Grady Jarrett

Strongest position group: Offensive skill players

Weakest position group: Front seven

Carolina Panthers

The Panthers finished last season 6-10 and finished last place in the NFC South, one year removed from a Super Bowl loss. Ron Rivera will return for a seventh season with the Panthers. Mike Shula will enter his fifth season as offensive coordinator for the Panthers. Steve Wilks will replace Sean McDermott as defensive coordinator. Wilks served as secondary coach for the Panthers for the last five seasons.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 25th Overall, 23rd Rushing, 24th Passing

Defense – 10th Overall, 9th Rushing, 11th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB Mike Tolbert, RB Fozzy Whittaker, WR/KR Ted Ginn, WR Philly Brown, OT Mike Remmers, OT Michael Oher, DE Kony Ealy, NT Paul Soliai, ILB A.J. Klein, S Tre Boston

Arrivals: WR Charles Johnson, WR Russell Shepard, OT Matt Kalil, DE Julius Peppers, CB Captain Munnerlyn, S Mike Adams

Top Draft Picks: RB Christian McCaffery (Stanford, #8 overall), WR Curtis Samuel (Ohio State, #40 overall), G Taylor Moton (Western Michigan, #64 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Cam Newton

Offensive Player of the Year: Greg Olsen

Defensive Player of the Year: Luke Kuechly

Other Notable players: Thomas Davis, Kawann Short, Shaq Thompson, Charles Johnson, Kelvin Benjamin

Strongest position group: Front seven

Weakest position group: Offensive skill players

New Orleans Saints

The Saints finished 7-9 for the third straight year and third in the NFC South. Sean Payton will enter his 11th season as head coach for the Saints. Pere Carmichael will be the Saints’ offensive coordinator for the eighth consecutive season. Dennis Allen will enter his third season as defensive coordinator for the Saints.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 6th Overall, 3rd Rushing, 6th Passing

Defense – 31st Overall, 23rd Rushing, 30th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Luke McCown, RB Tim Hightower, WR Brandin Cooks, G Jahri Evans, G Tim Lelito, DE/OLB Paul Kruger, CB B.W. Webb, CB Kyle Wilson, S Jairus Byrd, S Roman Harper, S Jamarca Sanford, S Shiloh Keo

Arrivals: RB Adrian Peterson, WR/KR Ted Ginn, G Larry Warford, G Orlando Franklin, DE Alex Okafor, ILB Manti Te’o, ILB A.J. Klein

Top Draft Picks: CB Marson Lattimore (Ohio State, #11 overall), OT Ryan Ramczyk (Wisconsin, #32 overall), S Marcus Williams (Utah, #42 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Drew Brees

Offensive Player of the Year: Michael Thomas

Defensive Player of the Year: Cameron Jordan

Other Notable players: Mark Ingram, Zach Strief, Kenny Vaccaro, Willie Snead

Strongest position group: Quarterback

Weakest position group: Secondary

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

The Buccaneers finished last season 9-7: their first winning season since 2010. Dirk Koetter will enter his second season as head coach of the Bucs after a very successful first season. Offensive coordinator Todd Monken and defensive coordinator Mike Smith will also enter their second seasons at their respective positions.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 19th Overall, 30th Rushing, 12th Passing

Defense – 13th Overall, 26th Rushing, 6th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Mike Glennon, WR Vincent Jackson, OT Gosder Cherilus, DE Jacquies Smith, DT Akeem Spence, OLB Daryl Smith, CB Alterraun Verner, S Bradley McDougald

Arrivals: QB Ryan Fitzpatrick, WR DeSean Jackson, DT Chris Baker, S J.J. Wilcox, K Nick Folk

Top Draft Picks: TE O.J. Howard (Alabama, #19 overall), S Justin Evans (Texas A&M, #50 overall), WR Chirs Godwin (Penn State, #84 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Jameis Winston

Offensive Player of the Year: Mike Evans

Defensive Player of the Year: Gerald McCoy

Other Notable players: DeSean Jackson, Doug Martin, Brent Grimes, Kwon Alexander, Chris Baker, Lavonte David

Strongest position group: Offensive skill players

Weakest position group: Secondary

NFC South Preseason Projections
Team Projected Record 90% Confidence Interval Odds to win Division
Falcons 10-6 6.5-9.5 13.9-2.1 66.5%
Panthers 8-8 5.6-10.4 12.3-3.7 16.9%
Saints 8-8 5.3-10.7 11.9-4.1 11.7%
Buccaneers 7-9 4.6-11.4 11.2-4.8 4.8%

 

2017 NFC East Outlook

Posted: August 29, 2017 in NFL
Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys finished last season 13-3 and were the #1 seed in the NFC before falling to Green Bay in the divisional round. Jason Garrett, entering his seventh season as head coach, leads the Cowboys. Scott Linehan will enter his third season as the offensive coordinator for the Cowboys. Rod  Marinelli will lead the Cowboys defense for the fourth straight year.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 3rd Overall, 2nd Rushing, 3rd Passing

Defense – 18th Overall, 8th Rushing, 19th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: OT Doug Free, G Ronald Leary, DT Terrell McClain, ILB Rolando McClain, CB Morris Claiborne, CB Brandon Carr, S Barry Church, S J.J. Wilcox

Arrivals: DE Damontre Moore, DT Stephen Paea, CB Nolan Carroll

Top Draft Picks: DE Taco Charlton (Michigan, #28 overall), CB Chidobe Awuzie (Colorado, #60 overall), CB Jourdan Lewis (Michigan, #92 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Dak Prescott

Offensive Player of the Year: Zack Martin

Defensive Player of the Year: Sean Lee

Other Notable players: Dez Bryant, Ezekiel Elliott, Demarcus Lawrence, Byron Jones, Travis Frederick, Tyron Smith

Strongest position group: Offensive Line

Weakest position group: Front seven

New York Giants

The Giants went 11-5 last year and made the playoffs in the first year since long-time head coach Tom Coughlin’s departure. Ben McAdoo will be entering his second season as head coach of the Giants. Offensive Coordinator Mike Sullivan will enter his second year with the Giants. Steve Spagnuolo will be entering his third year as defensive coordinator.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 22nd Overall, 26th Rushing, 21st Passing

Defense – 2nd Overall, 2nd Rushing, 4th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: OT Doug Free, G Ronald Leary, DT Terrell McClain, ILB Rolando McClain, CB Morris Claiborne, CB Brandon Carr, S Barry Church, S J.J. Wilcox

Arrivals: QB Geno Smith, RB Shaun Draughn, WR Brandon Marshall, TE Rhett Ellison, G D.J. Fluker

Top Draft Picks: TE Evan Engram (Mississippi, #23 overall), DT Dalvin Tomlinson (Alabama, #55 overall), QB Davis Webb (California, #87 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Eli Manning

Offensive Player of the Year: Odell Beckham Jr

Defensive Player of the Year: Landon Collins

Other Notable players: Janoris Jenkins, Damon Harrison, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie

Strongest position group: Quarterback

Weakest position group: Secondary

Philadelphia Eagles

The Eagles finished last season 7-9, which was last place in the NFC East. Doug Pederson will enter his second season as head coach for the Eagles. Accompanying Doug Pederson are second-year coordinators Frank Reich (offensive) and Jim Schwartz (defensive).

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 20th Overall, 11th Rushing, 25th Passing

Defense – 4th Overall, 13th Rushing, 2nd Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Chase Daniel, RB Kenjon Barner, WR Dorial Green-Beckham, G Allen Barbre, NT Bennie Logan, DE/OLB Connor Barwin, CB Leodis McKelvin, CB Nolan Carroll

Arrivals: QB Nick Foles, RB LeGarrette Blount, WR Alshon Jeffery, WR Torrey Smith, G Chance Warmack, DE Chris Long, DT Timmy Jernigan, CB Patrick Robinson

Top Draft Picks: DE Derek Barnett (Tennessee, #14 overall), CB Sidney Jones (Washington, #43 overall), CB Rasul Douglas (West Virginia, #99 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Brandon Graham

Offensive Player of the Year: Lane Johnson

Defensive Player of the Year: Fletcher Cox

Other Notable players: Carson Wentz, Alshon Jeffrey, Jordan Hicks, Malcolm Jenkins, Brandon Brooks

Strongest position group: Front seven

Weakest position group: Secondary

Washington Redskins

The Redskins finished last season 8-7-1 and missed the playoffs a year removed from finishing as divisional champions. Jay Gruden enters his fourth year with the Redskins with a 21-26-1 record. Matt Cavanaugh received an offseason promotion to offensive coordinator after serving as quarterbacks coach for two years. Greg Manusky also received a promotion this offseason to defensive coordinator after serving as linebackers coach last season.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 5th Overall, 4th Rushing, 5th Passing

Defense – 25th Overall, 24th Rushing, 24th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: WR Pierre Garcon, WR DeSean Jackson, C Kory Lichtensteiger, C John Sullivan, DT Chris Baker, DT Ricky Jean-Francois

Arrivals: WR Terrelle Pryor, WR Brian Quick, DT Terrell McClain, DT Stacy McGee, OLB Chris Carter, ILB Zach Brown, S D.J. Swearinger

Top Draft Picks: DE Jonathan Allen (Alabama, #17 overall), OLB Ryan Anderson (Alabama, #49 overall), CB Fabian Moreau (UCLA, #81 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Kirk Cousins

Offensive Player of the Year: Trent Williams

Defensive Player of the Year: Josh Norman

Other Notable players: Jordan Reed, Terrelle Pryor, D.J. Swearinger, Ryan Kerrigan, Mason Foster

Strongest position group: Offensive line

Weakest position group: Front seven

NFC East Preseason Projections
Team Projected Record 90% Confidence Interval Odds to win Division
Cowboys 9-7 6.2-9.8 12.8-3.2 41.2%
Eagles 9-7 6.0-10.0 12.6-3.4 34.2%
Giants 8-8 4.1-11.9 11.7-4.3 14.3%
Redskins 8-8 3.7-12.3 11.4-4.6 10.3%

 

 

2017 AFC East Outlook

Posted: August 29, 2017 in NFL
Buffalo Bills

The Bills finished last season 7-9 and missed the playoffs for the seventeenth straight year. The Bills fired head coach Rex Ryan during the season and hired Sean McDermott in January. McDermott previously served as the defensive coordinator for the Carolina Panthers. McDermott will have two new coordinators in Buffalo as well. Rick Dennison will lead the offense after spending the last two years with the Broncos. Leslie Frazier will join the Bills after spending last year as the Ravens secondary coach.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 10th Overall, 1st Rushing, 18th Passing

Defense – 27th Overall, 30th Rushing, 21st Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB Mike Gillislee, WR Marquise Goodwin, WR Justin Hunter, WR Marcus Easley, OT Cyrus Kouandjio, ILB Zach Brown, CB Stephon Gilmore, CB Nickell Robey-Coleman, S Corey Graham, S Phillip Thomas, K Dan Carpenter, WR Sammy Watkins

Arrivals: FB Patrick DiMarco, FB Mike Tolbert, WR Andre Holmes, WR Philly Brown, WR Rod Streater, G Vlad Ducasse, ILB Gerald Hodges, CB Shareece Wright, S Micah Hyde, S Jordan Poyer, K Steven Hauschka, WR Jordan Matthews, CB E.J. Ganes

Top Draft Picks: CB Tre’Davious White (LSU, #27 overall), WR Zay Jones (East Carolina, #37 overall), G Dion Dawkins (Temple, #63 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Tyrod Taylor

Offensive Player of the Year: LeSean McCoy

Defensive Player of the Year: Kyle Williams

Other Notable players: Richie Incognito, Charles Clay, Marcell Dareus, Lorenzo Alexander

Strongest position group: Offensive Line

Weakest position group: Secondary

Miami Dolphins

The Dolphins went 10-6 last season and made the playoffs for the first time eight years. Adam Gase will now enter his second year as head coach of the Dolphins. Clyde Christensen, also in his second year with the Dolphins, will lead the offense. Matt Burke is also entering his second year as defensive coordinator for the Dolphins.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 14th Overall, 17th Rushing, 16th Passing

Defense – 19th Overall, 22nd Rushing, 16th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures:TE Jordan Cameron, TE Dion Sims, OT Branden Albert, DE Mario Williams, NT Earl Mitchell, OLB Jelani Jenkins, S Isa Abdul-Quddus

Arrivals: TE Julius Thomas, TE Anthony Fasano, C Ted Larsen, DE William Hayes, ILB Lawrence Timmons, S T.J. McDonald, S Nate Allen

Top Draft Picks: OLB Charles Harris (Missouri, #22 overall), LB Raekwon McMillan (Ohio State, #54 overall), CB Cordrea Tankersley (Clemson, #97 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Jay Cutler

Offensive Player of the Year: Jarvis Landry

Defensive Player of the Year: Ndamukong Suh

Other Notable players: Reshad Jones, Byron Maxwell, Cameron Wake

Strongest position group: Front seven

Weakest position group: Offensive line

New England Patriots

The defending champion Patriots will enter Belichicks seventeenth season having won eight straight division titles. Josh McDaniels will be entering his ninth season as offensive coordinator for the Patriots. Matt Patricia will be leading the Patriots defense for a sixth straight season.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 2nd Overall, 15th Rushing, 2nd Passing

Defense – 16th Overall, 5th Rushing, 22nd Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB LeGarrette Blount, WR Michael Floyd, TE Martellus Bennett, OT Sebastian Vollmer, G Tre Jackson, DE Jabaal Shead, DE Chris Long, OLB Barkevious Mingo, CB Logan Ryan

Arrivals: RB Mike Gillislee, RB Rex Burkhead, WR Brandin Cooks, WR Andrew Hawkins, TE Dwayne Allen, DE Kony Ealy, DT Lawrence Guy, ILB David Harris, CB Stephon Gilmore

Top Draft Picks: DE Derek Rivers (Youngstown State, #83 overall), OT Antonio Garcia (Troy, #85 overall), DE Deatrich Wise (Arkansas, #131 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Tom Brady

Offensive Player of the Year: Rob Gronkowski

Defensive Player of the Year: Malcolm Butler

Other Notable players: Devin McCourty, Stephen Gilmore, Dont’a Hightower

Strongest position group: Quarterback

Weakest position group: Front seven

New York Jets

The Jets finished last season at 5-11 and last place in the AFC East. Todd Bowles will return for his third season as Jets head coach, failing to make the playoffs in his first two years. Bowles will be bringing in John Morton as the new offensive coordinator. Morton spent his last two season as the wide receivers coach for the Saints. Kacy Rodgers will return for his third season as defensive coordinator for the Jets.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 31st Overall, 20th Rushing, 31st Passing

Defense – 21st Overall, 1st Rushing, 31st Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Ryan Fitzpatrick, QB Geno Smith, RB Khiry Robinson, WR Brandon Marshall, WR Eric Decker, OT Ryan Clady, OT Breno Giacomini, C Nick Mangold, ILB David Harris, CB Darrelle Revis, S Calvin Pryor, S Marcus Gilchrist, K Nick Folk

Arrivals: QB Josh McCown, WR Quinton Patton, OT Kelvin Beachum, DT Mike Pennel, ILB Demario Davis, ILB Spencer Paysinger, CB Morris Claiborne, K Chandler Catanzaro

Top Draft Picks: S Jamal Adams (LSU, #6 overall), S Marcus Maye (Florida, #39 overall), WR ArDarius Stewart (Alabama, #79 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Josh McCown

Offensive Player of the Year: James Carpenter

Defensive Player of the Year: Leonard Williams

Other Notable players: Muhammad Wilkerson, Sheldon Richardson, Jamal Adams, Morris Claiborne

Strongest position group: Front seven

Weakest position group: Offensive skill players

AFC East Preseason Projections
Team Projected Record 90% Confidence Interval Odds to win Division
Patriots 11-5 7.7-8.3 14.8-1.2 91.9%
Bills 7-9 3.6-12.4 11.5-4.5 5.8%
Dolphins 7-9 2.8-13.2 10.4-5.6 1.8%
Jets 6-10 2.1-13.9 9.5-6.5 < 1%

 

2017 AFC North Outlook

Posted: August 28, 2017 in NFL
Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens finished last season 8-8, missed the playoffs for a second straight year, and have now missed the playoffs three of the last four years. Marty Mornhinweg is entering his second year as offensive coordinator for the Ravens. Dean Pees will be leading the Ravens defense for the sixth season.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 24th Overall, 21st Rushing, 26th Passing

Defense – 6th Overall, 4th Rushing, 10th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: FB Kyle Juszczyk, WR Kamar Aiken, TE Dennis Pitta, OT Ricky Wagner, G Vlad Ducasse, C Jeremy Zuttah, DE/DT Timmy Jernigan, DE/DT Lawrence Guy, DE/OLB Elvis Dumervil, ILB Zach Orr, CB Shareece Wright, CB Jerraud Powers, S Lardarius Webb, S Kendrick Lewis, S Matt Elam

Arrivals: RB Danny Woodhead, WR Jeremy Maclin, CB Brandon Carr, CB Brandon Boykin, S Tony Jefferson

Top Draft Picks: CB Marlon Humphrey (Alabama, #16 overall), OLB Tyus Bowser (Houston, #47 overall), DE Chris Wormley (Michigan, #74 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Joe Flacco

Offensive Player of the Year: Marshal Yanda

Defensive Player of the Year: Eric Weddle

Other Notable players: Tony Jefferson, Jimmy Smith, C.J. Mosley, Terrell Suggs

Strongest position group: Secondary

Weakest position group: Offensive skill players

Cincinnati Bengals

The Cincinnati Bengals went 6-9-1 and missed the playoffs for the first time in six seasons. Marvin Lewis will be entering his fourteenth year as head coach for the Bengals, yet still has not managed to win a playoff game. Ken Zampese is entering his second year as offensive coordinator – but his fifteenth season with the Bengals. Paul Guenther is entering his fourth year as Bengals defensive coordinator.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 11th Overall, 13th Rushing, 11th Passing

Defense – 17th Overall, 20th Rushing, 14th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB Rex Burkhead, OT Andrew Whitworth, G Kevin Zeitler, DE Margus Hunt, DE Domata Peko, OLB Karlos Dansby, ILB Rey Maualuga

Arrivals: OT Andre Smith, ILB Kevin Minter, CB Bene Benwikere

Top Draft Picks: WR John Ross (Washington, #9 overall), RB Joe Mixon (Oklahoma, #48 overall), OLB Jordan Willis (Kansas State, #73 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Andy Dalton

Offensive Player of the Year: A.J. Green

Defensive Player of the Year: Geno Atkins

Other Notable players: Tyler Eifert, Vontaze Burfict, Carlos Dunlap, Adam Jones

Strongest position group: Offensive skill players

Weakest position group: Offensive line

Cleveland Browns

The Browns went 1-15 in Hue Jackson’s first year and finished last place in the AFC North for the sixth straight season. Gregg Williams is the Browns’ new defensive coordinator. Williams spent his last three seasons as the defensive coordinator for the Rams.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 29th Overall, 12th Rushing, 29th Passing

Defense – 30th Overall, 27th Rushing, 29th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Robert Griffin, QB Josh McCown, WR Terrelle Pryor, WR Andrew Hawkins, OT Austin Pasztor, CB Tramon Williams

Arrivals: QB Brock Osweiler, WR Kenny Britt, G Kevin Zeitler, C J.C. Tretter, CB Jason McCourty, S Calvin Pryor

Top Draft Picks: DE Myles Garrett (Texas A&M, #1 overall), S Jabril Peppers (Michigan, #25th overall), TE David Njoku (Miami FL, # 29 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: DeShone Kizer

Offensive Player of the Year: Joe Thomas

Defensive Player of the Year: Jamie Collins

Other Notable players: Joel Bitonio, JC Tretter, Kevin Zeitler, Christian Kirksey, Myles Garrett

Strongest position group: Offensive line

Weakest position group: Offensive skill players

Pittsburgh Steelers

The Steelers finished last season 11-5 and won the division for the second time in three years. Mike Tomlin will be entering his 11th year as Head Coach for the Steelers. Todd Haley will lead the Steelers offense for the fifth straight year. Keith Butler will enter his third season as the defensive coordinator of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 7th Overall, 7th Rushing, 8th Passing

Defense – 11th Overall, 11th Rushing, 12th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB DeAngelo Williams, WR Markus Wheaton, TE Ladarius Green, DE/OLB Jarvis Jones, ILB Lawrence Timmons, CB Justin Gilbert

Arrivals: RB Knile Davis, WR Justin Hunter, DE/DT Tyson Alualu, CB Coty Sensabaugh

Top Draft Picks: OLB T.J. Watt (Wisconsin, #30 overall), WR JuJu Smith-Schuster (USC, #62 overall), CB Cameron Sutton (Tennessee, #94 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Ben Roethlisberger

Offensive Player of the Year: Antonio Brown

Defensive Player of the Year: James Harrison

Other Notable players: Le’Veon Bell, Ramon Foster, David DeCastro, Marcus Gilbert, Ryan Shazier

Strongest position group: Offensive line

Weakest position group: Secondary

AFC North Preseason Projections
Team Projected Record 90% Confidence Interval Odds to win Division
Steelers 10-6 6.1-9.9 13.6-2.4 71.7%
Ravens 9-7 5.1-10.9 12.7-3.3 26.0%
Bengals 9-7 5.0-11.0 12.6-3.4 23.3%
Browns 4-12 1.1-14.9 7.9-8.1 < 1%

 

 

2017 NFC North Outlook

Posted: August 28, 2017 in NFL
Chicago Bears

The Chicago Bears finished last season 3-13 and last place in the NFC North for the third consecutive year. John Fox will now enter his third year as head coach of the Bears. Dowell Loggains will enter his second year as offensive coordinator for the Bears. Vic Fangio will lead the Bears defense for a third straight season.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 17th Overall, 18th Rushing, 20th Passing

Defense – 23rd Overall, 29th Rushing, 17th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: QB Jay Cutler, QB Brian Hoyer, QB Matt Barkley, WR Alshon Jeffery, WR Eddie Royal, C Ted Larsen, DT Will Sutton, DE/DT Cornelius Washington, ILB Christian Jones

Arrivals: QB Mike Glennon, QB Mark Sanchez, WR Kendall Wright, WR Victor Cruz, WR Markus Wheaton, TE Dion Sims, OT Bradley Sowell, DE/DT Jaye Howard, NT John Jenkins, CB Prince Amukamara, CB Marcus Cooper, S Quintin Demps

Top Draft Picks: QB Mitchell Trubisky (North Carolina, #2 overall), TE Adam Shaheen (Ashland, #45 overall), S Eddie Jackson (Alabama, #112 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Jordan Howard

Offensive Player of the Year: Josh Sitton

Defensive Player of the Year: Jerrell Freeman

Other Notable players: Cody Whitehair, Prince Amukamara, Danny Trevathan, Akiem Hicks

Strongest position group: Front seven

Weakest position group: Offensive skill players

Detroit Lions

The Detroit Lions went 9-7 last year and made the playoffs for the second time in three seasons under Jim Caldwell. Caldwell is entering his fourth year as head coach of the Lions. Jim Bob Cooter will enter his third year as offensive coordinator. Teryl Austin is entering his fourth season as defensive coordinator for the Lions.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 15th Overall, 25th Rushing, 13th Passing

Defense – 32nd Overall, 19th Rushing, 32nd Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: WR Anquan Boldin, OT Riley Reiff, G Larry Warford, DE Devin Taylor, DT Stefan Charles, OLB DeAndre Levy, OLB Josh Bynes, S Rafael Bush

Arrivals: TE Darren Fells, OT Ricky Wagner, OT Greg Robinson, OT Cyrus Kouandjio, G T.J. Lang, DE Armonty Bryant, DT Akeem Spence, ILB Nick Bellore, ILB Paul Worrilow, CB D.J. Hayden

Top Draft Picks: LB Jarrad Davis (Florida, #21 overall), CB Teez Tabor (Florida, #53 overall), WR Kenny Golladay (Northern Illinois, #96 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Matthew Stafford

Offensive Player of the Year: Travis Swanson

Defensive Player of the Year: Darius Slay

Other Notable players: Golden Tate, T.J. Lang, Darius Slay, Marvin Jones

Strongest position group: Quarterback

Weakest position group: Front seven

Green Bay Packers

The Packers finished last season at 10-6 and won the NFC North for the fifth time in six years. Mike McCarthy enters his twelfth season as head coach of the Green Bay Packers. Edgar Bennett will be the Packers offensive coordinator for his third consecutive season. Dom Capers will lead the defense for his tenth straight season.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 4th Overall, 5th Rushing, 7th Passing

Defense – 20th Overall, 14th Rushing, 23rd Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB Eddie Lacy, RB Christine Michael, RB James Starks, TE Jared Cook, G T.J. Lang, C J.C. Tretter, DE Julius Peppers, DE Datone Jones, DT Mike Pennel, CB Sam Shields, S Micah Hyde.

Arrivals: TE Martellus Bennett, TE Lance Kendricks, G Jahri Evans, DE/DT Ricky Jean-Francois, CB Davon House

Top Draft Picks: CB Kevin King (Washington, #33 overall), S Josh Jones (N.C. State, #61 overall), DT Montravius Adams (Auburn, #93 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Aaron Rodgers

Offensive Player of the Year: Jordy Nelson

Defensive Player of the Year: Mike Daniels

Other Notable players: David Bakhtiari, Martellus Bennett, Morgan Burnett, Nick Perry

Strongest position group: Offensive skill players

Weakest position group: Secondary

Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings finished third in the NFC North last year with a record of 8-8. Mike Zimmer will begin his fourth season as the Vikings head coach. Pat Shurmur will be taking over full-time as offensive coordinator after serving on an interim basis for the last 9 games of the season. George Edwards is entering his fouth season as defensive coordinator.

Prior Year DVOA Rankings (footballoutsiders.com)

Offense – 26th Overall, 31st Rushing, 19th Passing

Defense – 8th Overall, 16th Rushing, 8th Passing

Offseason Summary (walterfootball.com)

Departures: RB Adrian Peterson, RB Matt Asiata, FB Zach Line, WR Cordarrelle Patterson, TE Rhett Ellison, OT Matt Kalil, G Brandon Fusco, G Mike Harris, OLB Chad Greenway, ILB Audie Cole, CB Captain Munnerlyn, P Jeff Locke

Arrivals: QB Case Keenum, RB Latavius Murray, WR Michael Floyd, OT Riley Reiff, OT Mike Remmers, DE Datone Jones

Top Draft Picks: RB Dalvin Cook (Florida State, #41 overall), C Pat Elfein (Ohio State, #70 overall), DT Jaleel Johnson (Iowa, #109 overall)

Preseason Awards

MVP: Sam Bradford

Offensive Player of the Year: Stefon Diggs

Defensive Player of the Year: Harrison Smith

Other Notable players: Xavier Rhodes, Linval Joseph, Everson Griffen, Danielle Hunter

Strongest position group: Secondary

Weakest position group: Offensive line

NFC North Preseason Projections
Team Projected Record 90% Confidence Interval Odds to win Division
Packers 10-6 5.9-10.1 13.4-2.6 64.4%
Vikings 8-8 4.5-11.5 12.2-3.8 27.5%
Bears 7-9 3.1-12.9 10.7-5.3 5.3%
Lions 6-10 2.7-13.3 10.2-5.8 2.7%

 

2016 Preseason Projection Review

Posted: August 26, 2017 in NFL

Football is back! With college football kicking off this weekend we are that much closer to the NFL season and football-filled weekends for months to come. The 2017 preseason projections will be released Monday-Friday next week.

Monday – AFC & NFC North previews

Tuesday – AFC & NFC East previews

Wednesday – AFC & NFC South previews

Thursday – AFC & NFC West previews

Friday – Preseason playoff picks

I thought it would be fun to revisit last year’s preseason projections prior to the release of the 2017 projections.  Overall, last year was not as a great as I would have liked. I’ve made some minor changes in hopes that this year brings more accurate preseason rankings. Below is a chart showing the preseason win projection and the actual result and total games off.

2016 NFL Predictions: The Statistical Truth
Team Pred. Actual DIFF
Colts 8 8 0
Saints 7 7 0
Seahawks 11 10.5 -0.5
Steelers 12 11 -1
Ravens 9 8 -1
Texans 8 9 1
Eagles 6 7 1
49ers 3 2 -1
Vikings 10 8 -2
Bills 9 7 -2
Jets 7 5 -2
Broncos 7 9 2
Buccaneers 7 9 2
Rams 6 4 -2
Browns 3 1 -2
Packers 13 10 -3
Patriots 11 14 3
Cowboys 10 13 3
Chiefs 9 12 3
Raiders 9 12 3
Giants 8 11 3
Chargers 8 5 -3
Lions 6 9 3
Jaguars 6 3 -3
Redskins 5 8.5 3.5
Titans 5 9 4
Cardinals 12 7.5 -4.5
Bears 8 3 -5
Falcons 6 11 5
Dolphins 5 10 5
Bengals 12 6.5 -5.5
Panthers 13 6 -7

 

 

I believe that accurate rankings should accomplish 2 things.

1) The difference of the projections and the actual result should follow a bell-curve pattern.

2)  75% of teams should be within +- 2 games of their preseason projection.

These are the standards I am setting for myself as well as all other preseason projections.

Below is a chart of last year’s bell curve.

It is fairly close to following a bell curve. The only thing that is really off is that there were a lot of teams that outperformed the preseason projection by three games rather than two. Otherwise, it pretty much follows the bell-curve pattern. As for the second standard, I only projected fifteen (47%) teams within two games – nine short of where I would like to be. I am confident that the changes I made will improve the projections for this season.

As for my playoff projection; I correctly picked six of eight division winners (missed on NFC South and NFC West) and did not pick any wild card teams correctly. I had three of the final four teams picked correctly. My super bowl prediction of Packers over Steelers did not happen, obviously.