Woohoo! August 8th has been circled on my calendar all summer, and it’s finally here…football is back, baby! Preseason officially begins in earnest with the Dolphins slapping around the Bears tonight. So, in anticipation of Airman’s annual Steelers thread cropping up shortly, who do ya like this year?
As much as I’d like to see my fantasy season come about (Giants go 19-0 through the Super Bowl! Eagles go 0-16!), I’ll try to keep this a little more grounded in reality.
My Goals For The Giants This Year (in order, with a slider balancing between “how much I’d like to see it happen” and “how likely it is to happen”):
- Don’t completely suck.
- Have a .500 season.
- Beat the Eagles once.
- Put up double-digit wins.
- Win the NFC East.
- Beat the Eagles twice.
- Make the Super Bowl
- Win the Super Bowl.
As in the previous two seasons, it all comes down to Big Blue staying healthy. They’ve had the weapons to win each year, but the sickening amount of players placed on IR derails 'em every time. They’ve had one of the best offseasons a team can have, so hope is very much alive this year!
Dare I hope that the Eagles follow history? It’s been…what? Five, maybe six years since the Super Bowl loser made the playoffs the following season? As I always say, the only thing that makes me as happy as a Giants win is an Eagles loss.
Random Team Predictions:
Bengals: Now good enough to earn one win apiece over the other teams in the division. Look for 1-1 season records against the Browns, Steelers and Ravens on the way to a 8-8 season.
Panthers: As I Giants fan, I can certainly appreciate the misery of seeing a ton of your key players get banged up. The injuries that kept their stars off the field last year have healed, however, so we’ll be seeing a Carolina team that looks a lot more like the '03 squad than the '04 one. They’ll finish 9-7.
49ers: Still the dregs of the league. Maybe, just maybe, they’ll be able to double their wins this year. Of course, that still leaves them as a 4-12 team.
Raiders: While a little more help on defense would be nice, the Raiders are still back in a big way. I really like their chances this year. Division title? Wrapped up. Conference championship game? See ya there. Super Bowl berth? Distinct possibility.
Some Generalized Predictions (comparing this season to last)
Moving way up: Raiders, Vikings
Climbing the ladder: Giants, Browns, Cardinals, Lions
Starting to slip: Patriots, Eagles, Packers, Seahawks
Plummeting: Steelers, Chargers