2011 NFL Division Preview
Welcome back everybody.
With another weekend of pretend football ahead of us, I bring you the next installment of our NFL Division Previews. Today we end our discussion of the National Football Conference with the NFC West.
The NFC West was the worst division in the league last year and will once again take that crown. Seattle is going in the wrong direction and the 49ers are once again spinning their wheels. The Cardinals made moves in the offseason but unless Kolb is ready to be a top five quarterback this year, not very likely, they don’t have enough else around him to be better than a .500 team.
That leaves us with the St. Louis Rams, the best team in the division because, well, someone has to win it. The Rams are a good young team, with a franchise quarterback and a defense with some good, young parts. If this team were in a better division, like say Tampa Bay in the NFC South, I would say that they were a year or two away from being good enough to get into the playoffs. But in the NFC West, they won’t have to wait.
While the teams themselves leave plenty to be desired, this is a division that features plenty of individual players who’ll be worth watching in 2011. Will Kevin Kolb be all that the Cardinals hope? Can Sam Bradford build on his impressive rookie season? Will young, high draft pick players on the defensive side like Chris Long and Aaron Curry have their breakout years? These will be some of the story lines that I’ll be interested in following this year in the NFC West.
One quick note before we get down to business. I’ve had a ton of fun bringing you these previews, they really are some of my favorite columns of the year to write. I say let’s keep the fun going, and because I’ve gotten such positive responses so far, I’m going to be writing a weekly NFL column this fall. It’s a work in progress, just an idea in it’s infancy, but so far I’m thinking I’ll post it on Thursdays and it’ll be a combination of a review of the week that was and a preview of the week’s games to come. I’ll break it up into sections, mostly informative but we’ll try to have some fun with it as well.
I also want to say that I appreciate all of your comments, and that the reason I haven’t been answering them is that I want I plan on including some sort of comment reply/mailbag type section in the regular season column, so I want to save any thoughts I have regarding your comments for that. So keep those comments coming, and if you have any questions, thoughts or ideas for the regular season column, or these division previews, don’t hesitate to drop me a message and let me know.
In case you missed it, here is this week’s NFC South Preview