2012 Week 4 NFL picks

It was a wild Week 3 in the NFL with lots of upsets and unfortunately lots of mistakes by the replacement refs. Good news is, the NFL and referees’ union finally reached an agreement. Regular officials will be back on the field, starting Thursday Night. To start my Week 4 picks, here’s a prediction of TNF game.

Cleveland Browns @ Baltimore Ravens, Thursday 8:20 PM (ET). Carolina lost its home game on Thursday Night last week but I’ll stick with home team here. At this point, I’d go with the Ravens any time any place playing against Browns team who haven’t won a single game this season and have plenty of problems, especially on defense.
Pick: Ravens 27-16, Result: 23-16
Against The Spread: Browns (+12.5)

Photo: clevelandbrowns.com

Carolina Panthers @ Atlanta Falcons, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Right now Falcons seem like the best team in the NFC. Atlanta is averaging 30+ points per game and I can see Falcons score 30+ on Panthers who allowed 26+ points per game so far through Week 3 in the NFL. I expect big day from QB Matt Ryan and his receivers.
Pick: Falcons 34-23, Result: Falcons 30-28
Against The Spread: Falcons (-7.5)

New England Patriots @ Buffalo Bills, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). It’s early on in the NFL but this is a big September game between this two division rivals. If Patriots lose this one, they fall to 1-3, on the other hand, with a win Bills would advance to 3-1. I think coach Belichick will get his team ready, but look for the Bills to be in the game till the end.
Pick: Patriots 27-24, Result: Patriots 52-28
Against The Spread: Bills (+3.5)

Minnesota Vikings @ Detroit Lions, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Minnesota Vikings are travelling to Detroit with a lot of confidence after they handled the 49ers at home last Sunday. RB Adrian Peterson might have a huge game against not so stout Lions’ run defense and if QB Ponder can play another mistake-free game we might see another upset win from the Vikings.
Pick: Vikings 28-25, Result: Vikings 20-13
Against The Spread: Vikings (+6.5)

San Diego Chargers @ Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Really tough game to predict, Chargers disappointed in a loss at home against the Falcons and the Chiefs managed to came up with an overtime win against dreadful Saints. When in doubt go with a home team, right? Right.
Pick: Chiefs 26-23, Result: Chargers 37-20
Against The Spread: Chiefs (+0.5)

Seattle Seahawks @ St.Louis Rams, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). This is as subjective as I could ever get. After what happened on MNF I want to see Seahawks lose this one badly, possibly in a last-second-hail-mary-TD kind of fashion. Go Rams.
Pick: Rams 20-17, Result: Rams 19-13
Against The Spread: Rams (+2.5)

San Francisco 49ers @ New York Jets, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Just like last year, 49ers stayed in Youngstown, Ohio for a back-to-back away game (please somebody tell this to Pete Prisco). It will be interesting to see how will the 49ers respond after first loss of the season. Controlling the line of scrimmage will be key. San Francisco will look to bounce back and get back on track with another good ground game.
Pick: 49ers 24-21, Result: 49ers 34-0
Against The Spread: Jets (+3.5)

Tennessee Titans @ Houston Texans, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Titans are awful on defense, allowing almost 40 points per game. Not a good thing if you are travelling to one of the most complete teams in the NFL. Texans will get this one with ease.
Pick: Texans 30-17, Result: 38-14
Against The Spread: Texans (-12.5)

Oakland Raiders @ Denver Broncos, Sunday 4:05 PM (ET). Raiders showed they have some potential with a win vs Steelers at home. Now they play division rival away from home. The last 4 seasons Raiders always came up with a win when playing Mile High above sea level. This time I think the home team will be too much for Oakland.
Pick: Broncos 26-20, Result: Broncos 37-6
Against The Spread: Raiders (+6.5)

Miami Dolphins @ Arizona Cardinals, Sunday 4:05 PM (ET). Before the season started I was thinking Arizona is the worst team in not so strong NFC West. What we’ve learned so far is quite the opposite, with strong defense and favorable schedule Cardinals could be the surprise team of the NFL. At least for now.
Pick: Cardinals 23-16, Result: Cardinals 24-21 (OT)
Against The Spread: Cardinals (-6.5)

Cincinnati Bengals @ Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday 4:05 PM (ET). Bengals are having a 2011 type of season, they keep winning against teams they are supposed to win. Next for the Bengals are the Jaguars who are playing with improved play at QB. Cincinnati has more playmakers on offense which will be the difference in this game.
Pick: Bengals 24-19, Result: Bengals 27-10
Against The Spread: Bengals (-1.5)

New Orleans Saints @ Green Bay Packers, Sunday 4:25 PM (ET). This could be a game in which Packers’ offense finally clicks. QB Aaron Rodgers didn’t have a really good game since last December and with Saints defense coming to Title town, this could change.
Pick: Packers 30-20, Result: Packers 28-27
Against The Spread: Packers (-7.5)

Washington Redskins @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Sunday 4:25 PM (ET). I really like what Greg Schiano’s been able to do with his team so far. With improved defense Tampa will be too much for Washington Redskins who unlike Buccaneers, have lots of problems on defense.
Pick: Buccaneers 28-23, Result: Redskins 24-22
Against The Spread: Buccaneers (-2.5)

New York Giants @ Philadelphia Eagles, Sunday 8:20 PM (ET). Eagles are averaging 4 turnovers per game, Giants on the other hand are +4 in turnover ratio. If QB Michael Vick continues to play his dangerous style of football, Eagles really don’t stand a chance against well-coached team from New York.
Pick: Giants 27-23, Result: Eagles 19-17
Against The Spread: Giants (+2.5)

Chicago Bears @ Dallas Cowboys, Monday 8:30 PM (ET). This will be another tough night for Bears’ QB Jay Cutler. Dallas will try to disrupt Chicago’s offensive rhythm and go after QB Cutler. The Bears will try to do the same with QB Romo who will handle the pressure better than Cutler.
Pick: Cowboys 23-20, Result: Bears 34-18
Against The Spread: Bears (+3.5)

Bye Week: Indianapolis Colts, Pittsburgh Steelers

Week 3 record straight-up: 7-9
Overall: 25-23

Against The Spread: 9-7
Overall: 26-22


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2012 Week 3 NFL picks

Last week Packers beat the Bears in the first Thursday Night Football game of 2012 season. Since 2006, home teams are now 26-12 when playing on Thursday Night (opening games to start each NFL season not included).
As usual, I’ll start my weekly picks with a prediction of Thursday Night Football game.

New York Giants @ Carolina Panthers, Thursday 8:20 PM (ET). Carolina was an expansion team in 1995 and since then, this two teams played each other only 6 times. For the Giants it will be only their 3rd trip to Carolina and its on short week. Injuries continue to pile up for New York Giants. Carolina got its ground game going last week which will help slow down Giants’ pass rush. QB Cam Newton and Co. will be a tough task for the Giants.

Pick: Panthers 30-27, Result: Giants 36-7
Against The Spread: Panthers (+1.5)

St.Louis Rams @ Chicago Bears, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).
Pick: Bears 27-23, Result: Bears 23-6
Against The Spread: Rams (+7.5)


Buffalo Bills @ Cleveland Browns
, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).
Pick: Bills 26-19, Result: Bills 24-14
Against The Spread: Bills (-2.5)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Dallas Cowboys, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).
Pick: Cowboys 30-24, Result: Cowboys 16-10
Against The Spread: Buccaneers (+7.5)

Detroit Lions @ Tennessee Titans, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).
Pick: Lions 28-23, Result: Titans 44-41 (OT)
Against The Spread: Lions (-3.5)

Jacksonville Jaguars @ Indianapolis Colts, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).
Pick: Colts 23-17, Result: Jaguars 22-17
Against The Spread: Colts (-3.5)

New York Jets @ Miami Dolphins, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).
Pick: Jets 26-24, Result: Jets 23-20 (OT)
Against The Spread: Dolphins (+3.5)

 

San Francisco 49ers @ Minnesota Vikings, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).
Pick: 49ers 27-17, Result: Vikings 24-13
Against The Spread: 49ers (-7.5)

Kansas City Chiefs @ New Orleans Saints, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).
Pick: Saints 31-24, Result: Chiefs 27-24 (OT)
Against The Spread: Chiefs (+8.5)

Cincinnati Bengals @ Washington Redskins, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).
Pick: Bengals 30-28, Result: Bengals 38-31
Against The Spread: Bengals (+3.5)

Philadelphia Eagles @ Arizona Cardinals, Sunday 4:05 PM (ET).
Pick: Eagles 20-17, Result: Cardinals 27-6
Against The Spread: Cardinals (+4.5)

Atlanta Falcons @ San Diego Chargers, Sunday 4:05 PM (ET).
Pick: Chargers 30-26, Result: Falcons 27-3
Against The Spread: Chargers (-2.5)

Houston Texans @ Denver Broncos, Sunday 4:25 PM (ET).
Pick: Texans 26-21, Result: Texans 31-25
Against The Spread: Texans (-1.5)

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Oakland Raiders, Sunday 4:25 PM (ET).
Pick: Steelers 30-17, Result: Raiders 34-31
Against The Spread: Steelers (-4.5)

New England Patriots @ Baltimore Ravens, Sunday 8:20 PM (ET).
Pick: Ravens 26-24, Result: Ravens 31-30
Against The Spread: Patriots (+2.5)

Green Bay Packers @ Seattle Seahawks, Monday 8:30 PM (ET).
Pick: Packers 24-21, Result: Seahawks 14-12
Against The Spread: Seahawks (+3.5)

Week 2 record straight-up: 10-6
Overall: 18-14

Against The Spread: 9-7
Overall: 17-15


2012 Week 2 NFL picks

I’ll start my Week 2 predictions with a pick of first Thursday Night Football game. This season, NFL decided to add more Thursday Night games and with new schedule all 32 teams will play a Thursday Night game, starting with Week 2 rivalry match-up between Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Since 2006, when NFL Network started broadcasting Thursday Night Football games, home teams are 25-12 (opening games to start each NFL season not included).

Chicago Bears @ Green Bay Packers, Thursday 8:20 PM (ET). NFL tradition at its best. This will be 185th game between this two teams if we include 2 playoffs games. Chicago leads the series 92-86-6. Bears started new season strong with a win against the Colts at home, but now have to play an away game on short week. Packers on the other hand lost home opener and will try to avoid 0-2 start to 2012 season.
Pick: Packers 27-24, Result: Packers 23-10
Against The Spread: Bears (+5.5)

Photo: NFL.com

Kansas City Chiefs @ Buffalo Bills, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Both teams disappointed last week with dismal performances. The Chiefs couldn’t stop explosive Falcons’ offense, Bills were beaten by Jets who supposedly couldn’t play on offense. As always, when in doubt, I’ll pick the home team.
Pick: Bills 29-26, Result: Bills 35-17
Against The Spread: Chiefs (+3.5)

Cleveland Browns @ Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Bengals’ time has come, a game against non-playoff team and they probably like it as they’ll try to bounce back after losing big time to Ravens in Week 1.

Pick: Bengals 21-13, Result: Bengals 34-27
Against The Spread: Bengals (-6.5)

Minnesota Vikings @ Indianapolis Colts, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). In Week 2 in the NFL rookie QB Andrew Luck finds out that he won’t have to face defenses as tough as Bears’ every Sunday. Against the Vikings he’ll get a good chance to get his first win as a Pro.
Pick: Colts 28-24, Result: Colts 23-20
Against The Spread: Colts (+1.5)

Oakland Raiders @ Miami Dolphins, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). This is first of many cross-country trips for Raiders this season. They travel to Miami to face the Dolphins. Normally I would go with home team in this kind of situation, but its the Dolphins, Raiders also looked bad last week but I think they’ll get first win this Sunday against the Dolphins.
Pick: Raiders 20-16, Result: Dolphins 35-13
Against The Spread: Raiders (-2.5)

Arizona Cardinals @ New England Patriots, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Because of John Skelton’s injury Kevin Kolb will be the starting quarterback for Arizona. That spells trouble for the Cardinals on offense, but Arizona has a solid defense which could make this game much closer than many people think.
Pick: Patriots 26-16, Result: Cardinals 20-18
Against The Spread: Cardinals (+13.5)

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ New York Giants, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). I was surprised to see how well Buccaneers played on defense last week. Now they get another chance to prove they are legit, playing away from home against defending champions. Giants will look to bounce back from opening game defeat.
Pick: Giants 23-17, Result: Giants 41-34
Against The Spread: Buccaneers (+7.5)

Baltimore Ravens @ Philadelphia Eagles, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Ravens QB Joe Flacco was impressive in Week 1, Michael Vick not so much for the Eagles. Even without injured LB Terrell Suggs Ravens still have one of the best defenses in the league. Vick will make some plays and keep this game close but with his style of quarterbacking he might not finish the game.
Pick: Ravens 23-19, Result: Eagles 24-23
Against The Spread: Ravens (+2.5)

New Orleans Saints @ Carolina Panthers, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Looks like Saints do miss their suspended head coach after all. Next for the wounded Saints are the Panthers who couldn’t get much going on offense against Tampa Bay last week. It’s still early in the season and Saints have plenty of time to get things going in the right direction. This could be a high-scoring game with Saints ending up on top.
Pick: Saints 32-27, Result: Panthers 35-27
Against The Spread: Saints (-2.5)

Houston Texans @ Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Jaguars lost both games against Texans last season and I can’t see them pull an upset this time either. They do play solid on defense so they might prevent Texans to score 30+ points. Despite playing on the road, Houston Texans will be too much for the Jaguars who will lose second straight game.
Pick: Texans 26-17, Result: Texans 27-7
Against The Spread: Texans (-7.5)

Washington Redskins @ St. Louis Rams, Sunday 4:05 PM (ET). Another game I had hard time to decide, I should go with a home team again, right? At this point I just can’t pick against RGIII and his Redskins who will try to get it done on the road again, this time against improved Rams’ team.
Pick: Redskins 26-23, Result: Rams 31-28
Against The Spread: Rams (+3.5)

Dallas Cowboys @ Seattle Seahawks, Sunday 4:05 PM (ET). Rookie QB Russell Wilson has yet to prove he can play good in NFL games that count. Can’t see him have a  break out game against the Cowboys. The crowd and the defense will keep Seahawks in this game but in the end it won’t be enough.
Pick: Cowboys 23-17, Result: Seahawks 27-7
Against The Spread: Cowboys (-3.5)

New York Jets @ Pittsburgh Steelers, Sunday 4:25 PM (ET). The Jets won’t score 40+ points every Sunday, at least I can’t see it happen this Sunday against Steelers on the road. Steelers still have lots of problems with injuries but they’ll find a way to beat the Jets at home.
Pick: Steelers 31-20, Result: Steelers 27-10
Against The Spread: Steelers (-6.5)

Tennessee Titans @ San Diego Chargers, Sunday 4:25 PM (ET). I like the Chargers in this game simply because I trust Rivers more than I trust Locker. QB Jake Locker made progress but it will be Rivers and his experience leading the Chargers past the Titans for a second straight win in the young 2012 NFL season.
Pick: Chargers 24-21, Result: Chargers 38-10
Against The Spread: Titans (+6.5)

Detroit Lions @ San Francisco 49ers, Sunday 8:20 PM (ET). Handshake bowl, as the media put it. Lions traveling to San Francisco with only one dimension of their offense. Look for Matthew Stafford to have 45+ pass attempts. San Francisco will have lots of opportunities to force turnovers and with improved offense they could improve to 2-0 Sunday Night.
Pick: 49ers 31-23, Result: 49ers 27-19
Against The Spread: 49ers (-6.5)

Denver Broncos @ Atlanta Falcons, Monday 8:30 PM (ET). At the moment, it seems like Atlanta Falcons are better team than the Pittsburgh Steelers who Broncos faced in Week 1 at home. Next for Denver is Atlanta on the road on Monday Night and it will be Falcons’ time to shine.
Pick: Falcons 30-27, Result: 27-21
Against The Spread: Broncos (+3.5)

Week 1 record straight-up: 8-8
Overall: 8-8

Against The Spread: 8-8
Overall: 8-8


High-scoring Week 1 in the NFL

Week 1 of the new NFL season is in the books and it was one of the highest-scoring weeks in NFL history. Teams have scored 791 total points which makes it the highest-scoring Week 1 in the history. Prior to 2012, the highest-scoring opening week came in 2002 when teams scored 788 total points.

But if we dig further into history of the NFL we can see that this year’s Week 1 isn’t among highest-scoring weeks in general. There are not always 16-game weeks in the NFL, that’s why I compared highest-scoring weeks by average per game, here is a list of top 5 scoring weeks with a comparison to 2012 Week 1.

2012 Week 1 NFL picks

Here are the rest of Week 1 picks in the NFL.

Dallas Cowboys @ New York Giants, Wednesday 8:30 PM (ET). Since 2004, NFL kick offs on Thursdays with defending Super Bowl champions playing at home. The reigning champions are 8-0 in those games. This year the season starts on Wednesday and the Giants will try to extend the trend against division rivals from Texas.
Pick: Giants 25-23, Result: Cowboys 24-17
Against The Spread: Cowboys(+3.5)

Indianapolis Colts @ Chicago Bears, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). This will be only the 4th time that Colts have to travel to Chicago since they’ve relocated from Baltimore to Indianapolis in 1984. Rookie QB Andrew Luck will have a couple of ‘welcome to the NFL’ moments facing Bears’ defense. Many think the Bears are capable of stealing the NFC North crown from the Packers so they can’t afford to drop a game against the Colts.
Pick: Bears 27-17, Result: Bears 41-21
Against The Spread: Colts (+10.5)

Philadelphia Eagles @ Cleveland Browns, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). In the past 7 NFL seasons the Browns didn’t manage to win the first game of the regular season. They will keep the trend going  as Eagles take this one easily.

Pick: Eagles 26-10, Result: Eagles 17-16
Against The Spread: Eagles (-8.5)

St.Louis Rams @ Detroit Lions, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET).  It wasn’t so long ago since the Rams visited the Lions. It was in 2010 when QB Shaun Hill ripped the Rams apart. This time around it will be Matthew Stafford leading the way for the Lions. I’m not sure if it will be as brutal as in 2010 but the result will be the same, Lions win.
Pick: Lions 24-17, Result: Lions 27-23
Against The Spread: Rams (+8.5)

New England Patriots @ Tennessee Titans, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Speaking of first games in the season, Patriots haven’t lost Week 1 game in the past 8 years. This year Patriots are again favorites to win AFC East division and one of the favorites to represent AFC in the Super Bowl. Titans will be a tough opponent for Patriots on the road, but in the end Patriots will find a way to win.
Pick: Patriots 27-20, Result: Patriots 34-13
Against The Spread: Patriots (-6.5)

Atlanta Falcons @ Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). In just 3 games in franchise history against Atlanta at home, Chiefs allowed no more than 10 points in each game and have won all 3 games. Of course that has nothing to do with 2012 Chiefs or Falcons, but I got a feeling that Chiefs might limit Falcons’ offensive weapons just enough to win the home-opener again, just like they did back in 1991 when they beat the Falcons 14-3.
Pick: Chiefs 24-23, Result: Falcons 40-24
Against The Spread: Chiefs (+0.5)

Jacksonville Jaguars @ Minnesota Vikings, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). Lately, both teams were good at stopping opponents’ run game, so in order to have a chance to win they’ll have to turn to their air-attack. It will be a battle of two second year QBs, Ponder vs Gabbert. The Jaguars’ pass defense will be the difference.
Pick: Jaguars 23-20, Result: Vikings 26-23 (OT)
Against The Spread: Jaguars (+4.5)

Washington Redskins @ New Orleans Saints, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). The Redskins travel to New Orleans to play the Saints who received some positive news regarding bounty scandal. Last year the Saints didn’t lose a game at home all season. With rookie QB RGIII Redskins seem like a perfect match for Saints’ team to open the new season.
Pick: Saints 34-23, Result: Redskins 40-32
Against The Spread: Saints (-9.5)

Buffalo Bills @ New York Jets, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). The Bills opened-up 2011 season strong, it might be quite the opposite this year. The Jets were a laughing-stock of the NFL during preseason. They looked terrible on offense, but with solid defense they can keep games close right to the end. Hard to decide, but when in doubt, I’ll go with a home team.
Pick: Jets 19-16, Result: Jets 48-28
Against The Spread: Bills (+3.5)

Miami Dolphins @ Houston Texans, Sunday 1:00 PM (ET). ‘Hard knocks’ episodes might well be the highlight of 2012 Miami Dolphins team. Can’t see a scenario in which the Dolphins would win this game on the road. They will receive an unfriendly welcome from the Super Bowl bound team from Texas.
Pick: Texans 27-12, Result: Texans 30-10
Against The Spread: Texans (-7.5)

San Francisco 49ers @ Green Bay Packers, Sunday 4:25 PM (ET). The last time 49ers won a game against the Packers at Lambeau Field was in 1990. Back in the day Joe Montana was tossing TD passes to Jerry Rice and John Taylor. San Francisco doesn’t have such playmakers on the team anymore, but they did get better on offense in the offseason. Still, I can’t see how they can upset the Packers who have a lot to prove.
Pick: Packers 23-19, Result: 49ers 30-22
Against The Spread: 49ers (+6.5)

Seattle Seahawks @ Arizona Cardinals, Sunday 4:25 PM (ET). Seattle looks like a better team, its true that they will start rookie QB Wilson, but on the other hand Cardinals’ QB situation is a mess. John Skelton did shine a couple of times last season but Seahawks now know what to expect from him. Low scoring game, Seattle comes out with a win on the road.
Pick: Seahawks 14-10, Result: Cardinals 20-16
Against The Spread: Seahawks (+1.5)

Carolina Panthers @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Sunday 4:25 PM (ET). Last season Panthers scored 38 and 48 points on the Buccaneers who collapsed late in the season. After full offseason QB Cam Newton & Co. could be an even bigger enigma for young Tampa Bay defense.
Pick: Panthers 30-26, Result: Buccaneers 16-10
Against The Spread: Panthers (-2.5)

Pittsburgh Steelers @ Denver Broncos, Sunday 8:20 PM (ET). Peyton Manning has yet to face real game situation after a long long time away from the NFL. Preseason is one thing, regular season something completely different. Pittsburgh will try to pressure him, the problem is, Steelers have problems of their own with injuries on the O-line which could result in QB Roethlisberger being pressured all day. I’m going with a home team here.
Pick: Broncos 24-18, Result: Broncos 31-19
Against The Spread:  Broncos (-1.5)

Cincinnati Bengals @ Baltimore Ravens, Monday 7:00 PM (ET). This is one of the 6 games between two division rivals in Week 1 of the NFL. Its alway nice to start the new season with a win, especially if that comes against division rival. The Ravens will be too much for the Bengals who couldn’t beat a playoff team in 2011.
Pick: Ravens 26-17, Result: 44-17
Against The Spread: Ravens (-6.5)

San Diego Chargers @ Oakland Raiders, Monday 10:15 PM (ET). When this two division rivals met in the last couple of years they always scored above average points. I expect the same on Monday Night with both defenses being the weakest link of each team.
Pick: Raiders 28-27, Result: Chargers 22-14
Against The Spread: Raiders (+1.5)

2012 NFL Division champions prediction – NFC

Yesterday I published my predictions for AFC division champions. It’s time for National Football Conference division winners for 2012.

Philadelphia Eagles are my pick for division title in NFC East. Eagles had a 5-1 intradivision record last season. In a lot of cases that would be enough to win the division but they lost some close games earlier on which eventually cost them the division. NFC East is one of the toughest division in the NFL so it won’t be easy for the Eagles of course, both Giants and Cowboys could be on top of the division too. The Packers are still the team to beat in NFC North, Chicago is a serious contender and will be in the hunt for division title. Despite all the sanctions regarding bounty scandal, the Saints will come through and with Brees running the show I still think they are the best team in NFC South. With a new defensive coordinator the Saints will be much better team on defense. San Francisco will successfully defend the West crown with Seahawks just falling short of the title. It will be hard for the 49ers to match 13-3 record from last season but in a weak NFC West, 9 wins could be enough to take the title.

Eagles, Packers, Saints and 49ers will make the playoffs as division champions, two remaining playoff spots will be taken by the Giants and Cowboys. Just missing the playoffs Bears, Seahawks.

2012 NFL Division champions prediction – AFC

Preseason is over and the defending Super Bowl Champions New York Giants and division rival Dallas Cowboys will kick off new NFL season on Wednesday night.
I got myself a brand new crystal ball 😀 and with my new edition I hope I’ll be able to top my previous record when I correctly picked 66% of NFL games (51% Against The Spread). Before I get into Week 1 predictions, here’s my view on which teams have the best chance to win its divisions.

First of all, American Football Conference division winners for 2012.

In my opinion, the Patriots and the Texans are a lock to win AFC East and AFC South. Both teams really won’t face any serious threat from division rivals.  I can see both teams win 11+ games in 2012. Buffalo solidified its defense in the offseason, but they are still far behind the Patriots who also upgraded their defense through 2012 draft. I also feel pretty good about the Ravens winning back-to-back AFC North division. Pittsburgh will be there to make Baltimore’s life miserable but in the end I think Ravens will take the crown. I had hard time deciding who to place first in AFC West. Even though Manning won’t produce the same kind of numbers as he did in his best pro years he’s still a huge upgrade for Denver at quarterback position. The main concern of course is, will he stay healthy. For a while I had the Chiefs and also the Chargers as No.1 in division. I can see the Chiefs making the playoffs as a Wild Card team out of AFC West, but its the inconsistency of QB Matt Cassel that worries me, as for the Chargers, I kind of lost faith in Norval Eugene Turner’s team.

Patriots, Ravens, Texans and Broncos will make the playoffs as division champions, two remaining playoff spots will be taken by the Steelers and Chiefs. Just missing the playoffs, Bills and Bengals.