I apologize for not getting this out last week, but you’re getting it now, so I hope this makes up for it.
You all will remember that I do my power rankings a little differently. This go ’round, I’m going to rank the biggest surprises in the NFC North after the first 5 games. And there are quite a few surprises…
Well, the division was 3-1 this past weekend, with the only loss being the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings look to get their first win this week, and the rest of the division looks to keep up with their winning ways. Here we go around the division to see how they’ll fare in week 4.
Let’s start with the 0-3 Minnesota Vikings. After a scare with the Coronavirus this week after having playing Tennesee, the Vikings will travel down to Houston to take on the 0-3 Houston Texans.
It seems both teams are getting used to their offseason moves. The Vikings getting used to playing without wide receiver Stefon Diggs, and the Texans without WR DeAndre Hopkins. And so far, neither team is better for it.
I’m going to have to take the Texans in this game for 2 reasons. Quarterback play (Sorry, I just have never really trusted Kirk Cousins) and the Houston defense.
The minute we saw the Sunday Night Football matchup between the Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints on the schedule, we knew we were in for a true primetime game. The first real test for the Packers brought the meeting of two legendary quarterbacks in Aaron Rodgers and Drew Brees.
Both headed for the Hall of Fame, they have faced equal scrutiny over the past few seasons with fans wondering “where has THE Rodgers been?” and “is it time for Brees to hang up the cleats?” Adding to the nervous excitement of the game was the fact that both teams would be without their stars, as wide receivers Michael Thomas and Davante Adams were sidelined.
Back like we never left. It was great getting back to football, even if fans aren’t there in every stadium. It’s still football. Week 2 is in the rearview, and it looked better for some NFC North teams than it did for others.
Let’s take a look at Week 2 in the North. The winners, the losers, and the head-scratchers.
It’s finally Week 1. We all made it! I get to talk about actual games now!
Now it’s time to take a look at what Week 1 could potentially bring us. The 4 teams of the North play each other this week, so that makes things pretty easy for me to preview. Plus, it’s also fun when rivalries are renewed!
Chicago Bears at Detroit Lions
This has always an interesting match up especially of late. The Bears ended last season winning 3 of their last 5 games, including one against the Lions. Detroit, however, lost all 5 of their final games of the season.
Happy New Year! Not really. But the new NFL season is upon us. Or is it?
As of now, it’s still on. Let’s get down to my 2020 season preview of the NFC North before they change their minds!
Chicago Bears (8-8 record last season)
Earlier this offseason, the Bears decided to decline their quarterback Mitchell Trubisky’s 5th-year option. They also traded for QB Nick Foles, which makes a quarterback competition inevitable at camp. Along with Foles, they added tight end Jimmy Graham and EDGE Robert Quinn. They also drafted TE Cole Kmet. The Bears defense is overall the same, with linebacker Khalil Mack leading the way.
In this edition of the OTFB Fan Forum, I decided to have everyone take a look at this odd offseason. The all-virtual, Zoom edition of an offseason.
Since free agents weren’t allowed into any facilities, it made signing them more difficult for teams. Rookies weren’t allowed anywhere near the rest of the team until training camp. It was a little weird. I was curious about how our forum members thought their team faired. Did they improve? Get worse by losing important pieces? Did they make any moves at all?
Or, seeing as the circumstances were, well… unusual, did they just hang on?
(Editors note: A few times a year we have guest contributors add to our website. Please enjoy.)
There have been many debates over the years. Waffles or pancakes? Chocolate or peanut butter? Tastes great or less filling? Allow me to add one more related to the NFL draft: Best available or fill needs?
I decided to dig into which strategy works better by researching ten years of drafts from 2009 through 2019. I chose the best team in each NFL division based on the overall record from that same period. I first looked at statistics for each season for these eight teams.
Items such as points scored and allowed, offensive and defensive rankings in each season, sacks allowed and recorded, and depth issues formed the baseline for what I saw as team needs for each draft. Any player chosen that would help improve the team in any of these areas was seen as a need pick, not a best available. Here are the teams and my analysis:
The NFL schedules were released Thursday night, although we have known the opponents throughout the week. I was surprised to see Green Bay opening the season in Minnesota. I can’t remember a time the opener wasn’t a Chicago Bears/Green Bay Packers game. And I know I cannot be alone – this is actually the first time in Packers franchise history.
Due to the pandemic, what will games even look like this season? Will the number of fans be limited severely, with at least 6ft of space between seats? Or will we only be able to watch in our houses, and sports bars? How will the lack of crowd hype make a difference in a player’s game?