NFL Power Rankings: Early Projections for 2012 Season

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NFL Power Rankings: Early Projections for 2012 Season
Scott Halleran/Getty Images

Super Bowl XLVI is now behind us, as the New York Giants are NFL champions. Just like that, we can now put a cap on the 2011 NFL season, tuck it away and start turning our attention to the 2012 NFL season.

Coming into the 2012 season, what teams are considered the favorites? What teams are ready to make that jump to reaching the playoffs after being eliminated from the postseason for many years in a row? What teams that were perennial contenders are ready to take a dive in the standings?

Obviously making projections right now is not the easiest assignment, since we don't know what key players are going to be brought back, which players will be released, who will be drafted and what kind of trades can be executed that will give certain teams better odds for the upcoming season.

What we can do is show in what areas each team was outstanding in 2011, and what areas need drastic improvement. With so many unknowns, this is speculation to get the juices flowing and people thinking. We are going to look at the changes that teams have made already, what happened to them in 2011 and try to put it all together and come up with our projections for where everybody will finish in 2012.

Expect a few surprises. The final slide will include my prediction of 2012 playoff teams and my prediction of the Super Bowl XLVII teams.

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