That can only mean one thing: crisp air, cookouts, hard hits, and intense on-field action. This year’s NFL season promises to be especially exciting. Who’s going to wind up a serious contender for the Superbowl crown?
Here are Sports Roses’ 2012 NFL season predictions…
1) The Denver Broncos. Yeah, yeah, last year was a fluke. Although Tim Tebow seems like a nice enough guy, he’s not really a Superbowl-contending quarterback. But you know who is? Peyton Manning. And now that he’s running the offense for the Denver Broncos, he just might make all the difference and lead them to a deep run in the playoffs.
2) The New York Giants. Not many people have the Giants pegged for a repeat. Then again, not many people had the Giants picked as Superbowl champions at the beginning of last season. Still, as defending champs, you can’t count the Giants out. They’re used to the underdog position and thrive on others underestimating them. Don’t make the same mistake — expect them to make a run in 2012.
3) The San Francisco 49ers. Last year they were a formidable 13-3 thanks to a killer defense. This year, they’ve improved their offense with savvy off-season pick-ups, including Pro Bowl wide receiver Randy Moss and crafty return specialist Perrish Cox.
4) New England Patriots. Guided by one of the best coaches in the NFL, last year’s Super Bowl runners-up, the New England Patriots, are contenders again. In the off-season, they plugged critical holes by signing star wide receiver Brandon Lloyd and several defensive players that should help them make another serious run for the title.
5) The Buffalo Bills. The Bills are wild cards this year. Coming off yet another disappointing season in 2011, the Bills made drastic changes in the off-season. They signed defensive star Mario Williams to a $100 million contract and brought in DE Mark Anderson to create one of the most impressive defensive lines in the league. On the offensive side, QB Ryan Fitzpatrick, running backs Fred Jackson and CJ Spiller, and WR Stevie Johnson give them some serious firepower. Don’t count them out in 2012.
One thing’s for certain: it’s going to be an exciting year.
Weigh in on our predictions and share yours in the comments below.
Who were the top NFL steals of the 2012 draft? Here are our picks.
1. Mohamed Sanu. Sanu, a talented wide receiver from Rutgers, was projected to go near the end of the first round, but didn’t get snatched up until the third. The Cincinnati Bengals got a steal with this talented, athletic receiver with tons of upside.
2. David DeCastro. Offensive Guard David DeCastro was slated to be a top 10 pick. When the Steelers snatched him up at number 24, they got a killer deal.
3. DeQuan Menzie. Menzie is a talented cornerback — one of the best in draft — and somehow slid all the way to the fifth round when the Chiefs grabbed him. He should make an immediate impact.
4. Orson Charles. Tight end Orson Charles can block, run, and catch. He should have been a first-round pick but had a DUI arrest that dropped him all the way down to the fourth round. The Bengals picked him up for their second steal of the draft.
5. Courtney Upshaw. Outside Linebacker Courtney Upshaw is intensely talented, with speed and strength that results in serious sacks. At 6’1″ he’s a bit on the short side, but his raw skill will make up for it. The Ravens nabbed him at No. 35 and got one of the most talented players in the draft.
Tell us who your favorite pick ups from the 2012 NFL Draft were in the comments below.