The 2018 NFL Season
What to expect and more
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Week 4 in the 2018 NFL season kicks off (Pun intended) in just a few days. On Thursday, August 31, the final 16 games of the preseason were played, and showed a sprinkle of how the play calling will go this regular season. Weeks 1-3 where action packed, and we saw many teams surprise us. With many new rookie hotshot players looking to make an impact fresh out of college, and returning players looking to do better than their previous year(s), the 2018 NFL season will be a great one for sure. So let’s talk about what to expect.
Cleveland Browns (Rebuilding)- Ahh yes. The laughing stock of the 2017 regular season, the Cleveland Browns. Infamous for being only the second team to go 0-16 in the regular season, and the fourth team to have gone winless in the regular season, the Browns are just entering their rebuilding stage. With hotshot rookie Quarterback Baker Mayfield fresh out of Oklahoma University, the number one overall Pick in the 2018 Draft and Top rated QB in the draft, Mayfield is going to be sure to turn some heads. Hopefully allowing the Browns and their infamous 1-31 (In 2 NFL seasons with Cleveland) Head Coach Hue Jackson to have at least a decent regular season.
New York Giants (Rebuilding)- After a surprising 3-13 Regular Season in 2017, and a 11-5 playoff run in 2016, the Giants saw their head coach fired in the middle of the season, and finished last in NFC East and in the NFC as well. With the Second overall Pick in the Draft, the Giants drafted the best player in the Draft, Running Back Saquon Barkley. Barkley is fast, and I mean FAST, and is sure to surprise a lot of teams and fans alike. Although the Giants added the Hotshot Rookie to their roster, I personally don’t feel the Giants have it in them to make the playoffs with the aging Eli Manning at QB.
Houston Texans (Reformed)- The Texans were plagued with injuries in 2017 which saw the team finish with a sad 4-12 record. This came a season after the Team won AFC South with Rookie Hotshot Deshaun Watson, who tore his ACL at a team practice in November of the 2017 season. With Watson Back on the Roster, and the Texan’s defence looking good as new, the Texans are the second favorites to win AFC South. As long as the team stays healthy, and the Texans rack up some points, I feel they will be making a postseason appearance this coming December.
Chicago Bears (End of rebuilding/Reformed)- For the Chicago Bears, the past NFL seasons have not been easy. After accumulating a 14-34 record the Past three seasons under Head Coach John Fox, who was supposed to bring the Bears back on top, the Bears fired their Head Coach and hired Matt Nagy off the Kansas City Chiefs. With Mitchell Trubisky, the top QB in the 2017 draft, entering his second year, and Matt Nagy making changes offensively, (where the Bears lacked last season) the Bears are going to improve their regular season record from last season, and hopefully make the playoffs for the first time since 2010.
Teams that’ll most likely make the Playoffs.
Dallas Cowboys- The Cowboys will do better this year. Dallas had several injuries and holes in the team last year, with Ezekiel Elliott missing the middle of the season due to a suspension, and several players just having a crap performance. The Boys made several improvements this offseason including parting with longtime wide receiver Dez Bryant (who was one of the players that had a crap performance). Despite Tight End Jason Witten retiring, Dak Prescott and his team should make a better performance than last year, finish with a 10-6 record, and take the Second NFC Wild Card.
Green Bay Packers- The cheeseheads didn’t do too hot last season. After a poor 7-9 season that came with missing the playoffs as a result of Green Bay’s star quarterback Aaron Rodgers being injured (for like the 5th time) and missing the Majority of the season, the Packers will be looking to bounce back and Win NFC North. The North will be the toughest division in the whole of the league this year with the reformed Bears, the team that won the North last year; The Minnesota Vikings, and the Detroit Lions who are usually pretty good. It will be very interesting to see who beats who within the Division, which will determine who makes the Playoffs and who misses them.
The league overall; Who’ll win what divisions and what will their records be?
Note: This is based on my opinion, which is based off how these teams did last season and in the off-season.
Winner- Green Bay Packers or Chicago Bears (12-4 Record)
NFC Wild Card 1- Whoever doesn’t win between Chicago & Green Bay (10-6 or 11-5 Record)
Winner- Philadelphia Eagles (12-4 or 13-3 Record)
NFC Wild Card 2- Dallas Cowboys (11-5)
Winner- New Orleans Saints (11-5 or 12-4 Record)
Winner- Los Angeles Rams (14-2 or 15-1 Record; Will most likely represent the NFC in the Super Bowl)
Winner- Pittsburgh Steelers (11-5 or 12-4 Record)
Winner- New England Patriots (12-4 or 13-3 Record; Either Jacksonville or New England will represent the AFC in the Super Bowl)
Winner- Jacksonville Jaguars (11-5, 12-4, or 13-3 Record; Either Jacksonville or New England will represent the AFC in the Super Bowl)
AFC Wild Card 1- Houston Texans (9-7, 10-6 or 11-5 Record)
Winner- Los Angeles Chargers (11-5 or 12-4 Record)
AFC Wild Card 2- Kansas City Chiefs (9-7 or 10-6 Record)
To Sum it up
The 2018 NFL Season will be one of the best we’ve seen in awhile. Teams we haven’t seen be good for a long time will bounce back and become good once again. Others will do worse, or stay the same. Tune in on Thursday, September 27 to see the Undefeated Los Angeles Rams take on the Minnesota Vikings. Again; this is purely opinion and how I feel teams will do based on how their previous seasons and off-season went.
My name is William Thomas, and I'm a reporter for the McNeil Trailblazer. Originally from Chicago, Illinois, I moved to the lovely state of Texas in the...