Thursday, September 09, 2004


Before I get started with my 2004 NFC preview, I have a nickname for Patriots rookie tight end Benjamin Watson.

Benjamin "You're Just What I Needed" Watson

He's going to be a good 3rd down option for Tom Brady, I can already see it.

Anyways, here's my 2004 NFC Preview.


NFC East
Philadelphia Eagles (12-4)
---The Eagles have lost 3 NFC Championship games in a row. So what have they done in the offseason to make sure that they won't lose a 4th NFC Championship Game? They now have Terrell Owens in the fold as well as The Freak, Jevon Kearse. But can Donovan F. McNabb shake the Chunky Soup and get this Philadelphia team to the Super Bowl? No. The Eagles still don't have enough to win the Super Bowl. Other than Owens, their receiving corps is crap. Todd Pinkston? Come on. But since they are in the NFC East, they will earn a first-round bye very easily.
Washington Redskins (9-7)
---All summer long, I wasn't sure about the Redskins. But I think they're going to be a playoff team this season. Clinton Portis will give the Redskins the running back that they have needed since Stephen Davis left. Joe Gibbs is class all the way, and the NFL is better off for having him back in the game. While I don't see him enjoying the same success he had during his first tenure in Washington, he's not going to struggle either. It's about time for the Redskins to show up. Gibbs will definitely have this team show up in 2004.
Dallas Cowboys (7-9)
---The Cowboys' defense will give them a chance week in and week out. But Vinny Testaverde is not going to get the job done in Dallas. At least I don't see it happening anyway. Bill Parcells will clash with Jerry Jones more than once this season, I'm calling it right now. This relationship has the makings of an ugly split.
New York Giants (5-11)
---Eli Manning will take over as the starting quarterback by Week 5. Or sooner, if Kurt Warner is a vegetable by then. New York fans are hoping that Kurt's wife Brenda keeps her yapper shut. Fat chance though.

NFC North
Minnesota Vikings (11-5)
---Daunte Culpepper is going to have a big year. Big shock. Michael Bennett is fragile as hell. Even a bigger shocker. The defense is still shaky. You get the picture. But the fact is, the Vikings are primed for a big run. They are the team that I think will challenge the Seahawks, not the Eagles.
Green Bay Packers (10-6)
---Brett Favre is tough as hell. However, I still hate Al Harris, that dreadlocked bastard. Go Pack Go Away.
Detroit Lions (8-8)
---Darkhorse alert! Darkhorse alert! Seriously, the Lions are going to be much improved in 2004. They have not won a single road game since the 2000 season. But that will change in 2004, starting with this weekend's opener in Chicago. Joey Harrington has weapons. Charles Rogers and Roy Williams should form a nice 1-2 receiving combo. And I think Kevin Jones will be the running back the Lions have desparately needed since Barry Sanders retired after the 1998 season. All of this should be enough for Matt Millen to keep his job in the Lions' front office.
Chicago Bears (6-10)
---Thomas Jones is the Bears' starting running back. Not a good sign.

NFC South
Carolina Panthers (10-6)
---Go ahead and write them off as a one-year wonder. Sure, why not? However, the Panthers won't be a one-year wonder. John Fox is an excellent head coach. Their defense is intact. I do worry about their offensive line, but they should shore that up as the season goes along. The NFC South is up for grabs. And I see the Panthers coming out on top in the end.
Atlanta Falcons (8-8)
---I had the Falcons winning the NFC South all summer long. But something changed along the way. Deangelo Hall gets hurt, Michael Vick is having trouble learning the West Coast offense, etc. Oh, and the Panthers simply aren't that damn bad. In 2005, I expect the Falcons to be contenders. But for 2004, they aren't there yet.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (7-9)
---Things are ugly in Tampa Bay. Well, they certainly aren't as ugly as their old gay pirate uniforms. That being said, this team is headed for a meltdown. Brad Johnson is near the end of the line, Keenan McCardell is holding out, and the defense is weaker. However, Jon Gruden will keep his job, because the fans in Tampa are still basking in their Super Bowl glory of 2 seasons ago.
New Orleans Saints (6-10)
---January 3, 2005: ESPN's John Clayton reports that the Saints have fired head coach Jim Haslett.

NFC West
Seattle Seahawks (12-4)
---I'll have a much bigger Seahawks preview tomorrow. But I'll add a few words here. This team is as good as the hype. There's a reason why the Seahawks are being considered as Super Bowl contenders.
St. Louis Rams (7-9)
---Marc Bulger? He's not an elite quarterback. Not even close. This team is going down in flames. Maybe Mike Martz loses his job in the process. But as a Seahawks fan, I'm all for the Rams keeping Martz as long as possible, heh.
Arizona Cardinals (5-11)
San Francisco 49ers (4-12)
---Even uglier.

Seattle (home field advantage)
Philadelphia (first round bye)
Minnesota (division winner)
Carolina (division winner)
Green Bay (wild card)
Washington (wild card)

Wild Card Round

Divisional Playoffs

NFC Championship Game

NFC Champions: Seattle Seahawks

NFC Offensive MVP: QB Matt Hasselbeck, Seahawks
NFC Defensive MVP: DT Kris Jenkins, Panthers
NFC Offensive Rookie: WR Keary Colbert, Panthers
NFC Defensive Rookie: CB Sean Taylor, Redskins
NFC Comeback Player: QB Mark Brunell, Redskins
NFC Coach of the Year: Mike Holmgren, Seahawks

February 6, 2005
Jacksonville, Florida
Seattle Seahawks d. New England Patriots
Super Bowl MVP: Matt Hasselbeck, Seahawks (who leads the 'Hawks on a game-winning touchdown drive in the 4th quarter)

Enjoy the 2004 NFL Season. It's going to be great.

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