NFL Mid-Season Report



New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady celebrates a touchdown by running back Stevan Ridley against the Cincinnati Bengals in the first quarter of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 5, 2014, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

A little past the midway point of the 2017-18 NFL season, there’s been a lot to see. Let’s take a look at what’s going on:

The NFC East has had a Lot of surprises.  Philadelphia has the best record in the league at 8-1. On the flip side, the Giants are 1-8. Dallas and Washington sit at 5-4 and 4-5, respectively. Philly has a decent shot at the number one seed in the NFC if Carson Wentz can keep it up. The Cowboys and Washington will look to battle for a wildcard spot, and New York will have a top three pick, which would beneficial if they would pick an offensive lineman.  

Moving on to the NFC West with the Rams, Seahawks, Cardinals and 49ers.  Last season the Rams moved to Los Angeles. This year, they moved to Hollywood. They have been lighting it up on the scoreboard, scoring 296 points total (over 30 points per game), with a 7-2 record. Seattle is right behind them at 6-3, and should make the playoffs. Arizona and San Francisco follow, 4-5 and 1-9, respectively. The 49ers traded for quarterback Jimmy Garopolo at the trade deadline, but it is yet to be seen if “Jimmy G” will start for the 49ers this season.

In the NFC North, Minnesota is a quiet 7-2, Detroit and Green Bay are both 5-4, and the Bears are 3-6. It looks like the Vikings will be the only team here that makes the playoffs, but they look like a team that’ll lose in the first round. The Vikings have the opportunity to be the first team to have the Super Bowl in their home stadium.

In the NFC South it seems as if Atlanta hasn’t gotten over their Super Bowl loss. They’re third, with New Orleans (7-2) and Carolina (7-3) ahead of them. Tampa Bay is 3-6. The top two here are on the path to the postseason, but it’ll be tough for New Orleans to stay ahead of Cam’s Panthers. Brees’s age was thought to be getting to him, but he seems to have some more youth left.

Moving on the AFC and the AFC East, the defending champion Patriots are almost disappointingly 7-2, followed by Buffalo (5-4), Miami (4-5), and the Jets (4-6). New England looks to be the only playoff contender here, with challenges in Mexico City vs. the Raiders, and at Pittsburgh. The strange team here is the New York Jets, who decided to forgo tanking for a high draft pick to win now. Bowles will probably stay at least another year.

In the AFC West well, Kansas City is NOT undefeated anymore. After a 5-0 start, they’re 1-3 in their last four games, and the combination of Smith and Hunt isn’t unstoppable. Oakland is second at 4-5, disappointing after last year’s surprise 12-4 campaign. The L.A. Chargers and Broncos follow, both at 3-6.

The AFC Nis as predictable as ever as Pittsburgh will win the division. The Steelers have to stop playing to their opponent’s skill level if they want to win a championship. Baltimore follows at 4-5, chased by the 3-6 Bengals and 0-9 Cleveland Browns. They should have the #1 pick in the draft. At least Cleveland has LeBron.

In the AFC South the Titans and Jaguars are tied atop the division at 6-3, and both will probably make the postseason. They’re both led by their rushing attacks, but Jacksonville’s “Sacksonville” defense has been a surprise. The Texans and Colts are without each of their best players (J.J. Watt and Andrew Luck), and are 3-6 and 3-7, respectively.  

Leading up to Super Bowl 52 the AFC has been lackluster, so New England will probably be back again unless Pittsburgh can do something. That seems unlikely right now. In the NFC, things will probably be a bit more competitive. The top three teams are the Los Angeles Rams, New Orleans, and Philadelphia. It’s tough to say now, but this Rams team has the edge because of their defense. Unless the Eagles step up, they won’t make it past the NFC Championship.