FMQB: Year 9, Knock on Wood if you’re With Me
Friday Morning Quarterback is back! Year 9!!!! It seems like forever since I’ve put out a post, and I have to say this is been one of the crazier offseasons for stories. Knock on wood if you’re with me!!!!!
It’s the NFL’s 100th season. Antonio Brown is getting weirder by the day, and is apparently being sued by a chef because he found his fish head in the freezer and thought it was a mob threat. Not to mention his helmet issues. The Packers played a preseason game on an 80 yard field and no kickoffs (do we think that was on accident)? The Giants were the laughing stock of the league when they drafted Daniel Jones, only to have him look like a veteran QB WAY ahead of Manning in the preseason. And are we really living in a world where the Cleveland Browns are the most hyped team going into the season? Don’t even get me going on the shockwave through the NFL of Andrew Luck retiring, likely leaving $100+ million and a hall of fame bust on the table.
This is my annual Prediction post. And I’ll have an abbreviated Week 1 recap next week. Finish the Dad joke and you’ll find out where I am currently honeymooning: “Did you know the first French fries weren’t made in France? No, they were fried in….”
- Rookie of the Year- NOT Kyler Murray
- MVP- Patrick Mahomes again
- Comeback player of the year- Cooper Kupp
- The Daniel Jones Eli Manning narrative will dominate headlines. Manning will make it through the first 4 weeks going 1-3, and by Week 5 Daniel Jones is under center.
- LeVeon Bell will underperform, starting all 16 games but not hitting 1000 yards, which will hurt the RB market for everyone else moving forward
- Speaking of RB market, Zeke has a deal done by Week 3, but is outside the top 5 rushers. Gordon will hold out, into October. Gurley will play, but be affected by his knee, coming in outside the Top 10 but will be top 5 in TD’s.
- Rosen is the starting QB for the Dolphins by Week 7, but will still struggle
- Nick Foles won’t have the same success as in Philly, but will be a dramatic increase from Blake Bortles.
- Odell Beckham will be mostly off the radar in terms of drama, but will light it up on the field. Antonio Brown however will continue adding to his weird saga, and will get extremely frustrated as him and Carr are on different wavelengths.
FMQB Ranting already:
I do want to step in and give my opinion of the new pass interference rule, and the fact it’s reviewable. My prediction is this is a one and done rule, and will be a disaster once games are won and lost due to it. (I get it Saints fans, you have a right to complain). But we’re going to have a scenario where a call is overturned in the end zone that is ticky tacky and decides the game. I guarantee this happens, and likely more than once. It’s almost a weekly occurrence that a 4th and Goal ends with a fade in the endzone, and now coaches are going to challenge every play. It’s going to be a situation where you look at the play and accept the call on the field, but under review there’s some minor hold that technically defines PI, and it’s going to change the outcome of the game. Just watch, that’s my prediction.
Take on Andrew Luck:
I was absolutely shocked to hear Luck was retiring. In fact, one way I know I’m old, is that I remember doing this blog the year leading up to Luck being drafted and now he’s retiring! Here’s my thing, yes the timing was absolutely terrible and essentially ruins the Colts’ season, but he had every right to do this. He’s a grown man and can make whatever decision is right for him. The fact Colts fans booed him off the field was also despicable. The organization was classy by letting him keep close to $25M, that’s a ton of money! But after seeing Calvin Johnson, Rob Gronkowski, and now Luck retire essentially in their prime, I think this is going to become a thing in the NFL. People are more cognizant of the toll it takes on their bodies, and enjoying life. I just wouldn’t be surprised to see some QB’s play well into their 40s, while other stars leaving at 29 is considered “normal.”
AFC North: I have the Browns and Ravens battling it out for the division. Should be fun to see the progression of both 2nd year QB’s. The Steelers will regress, and we’re nearing the end of this “regime.”
AFC East: Patriots have this in the bag as always, although I think the Jets are going to make a run at it and sneak in a wild card spot. Sam Darnold is going to be a force to be reckoned with in the upcoming years. Watch for the Dolphins to have a Top 3 pick.
AFC South: Such a weird division! You could almost argue for any team, but no team to be more than 10 or 11 wins. I had the Colts taking it until Saturday, now I think they’ll be in last place. The Texans will be solid, the Jags should improve with Foles, and the Titans would be playoff caliber if Mariotta stays healthy.
AFC West: The Chiefs should take this division handily as well. On the fence with Denver, if Flacco has some magic left they could be a team on the rise. Oakland also looks good on Hard Knocks, but that could be fancy camera work. Chargers should regress with Melvin Gordon and Keenan Allen missing time.
NFC North: Another weird division. I do think the Bears are the best team in the division, but their kicking woes could easily lose them 3 games. Packers should be better if Rodgers is healthy and a hungry coach. I think the Vikings have a 9-7 season and miss the playoffs again, and the Lions will pull a Lions and be obsolete by Week 5.
NFC East: Without Foles to fall back on, Wentz will have to stay healthy, but the Eagles have a chance to make a deep playoff run. The Cowboys will do what they always do under Jason Garrett, and go 8-8 after a playoff year. The Giants will be newsworthy, but not in the playoff hunt. And the Redskins will have QB woes that still aren’t addressed by January.
NFC South: The Saints are still a powerhouse, but their window is rapidly closing. They’ll take the #1 seed one last time though. The Bucs will have to move on from Winston after this year. Panthers will struggle with Newton staying healthy, and the Falcons will be in line for a Wild Card spot.
NFC West: The Rams are easily the best team in the division. The Seahawks will make a push, but they’ve lost too many players to make the playoffs. Jimmy G will lead the league in INT’s, so the 49ers aren’t in the picture. And Arizona will be a fun team to watch but Murray will have ups and downs.
Chiefs vs. Texans
Saints vs. Eagles
Chiefs vs. Saints- Chiefs win it all
Quote of the Offseason:
“He drinks a gallon of milk every day. … I think it’s the milk that’s not pasteurized, either. I think it’s right out of the teat.”
Jay Gruden on Colt McCoy’s milk habits.
Best Quote of the Offseason:
“Knock on wood if you’re with me” Jon Gruden
Meme’s of the Offseason: