50 Predictions for the 2012 NFL Season

Tony Santorsa@@TonySantorsaSenior Writer IIFebruary 6, 2012

50 Predictions for the 2012 NFL Season

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    The 2011 NFL season is a wrap with the New York Giants being crowned Super Bowl Champions for the second time in the last four seasons following their epic 21-17 victory over the New England Patriots.

    Now that the 2011 season is over, it's now time to look ahead to the future: The 2012 NFL season that is. 

    In that spirit, let's start the predictions off a little early this year.

    Here are 50 predictions for the 2012 NFL season. 

Tom Brady Will Win MVP

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    Following Tom Brady and his New England Patriots loss in Super Bowl XLVI, I can guarantee to you that he will come out gunning in 2012.

    I am predicting that 2012 will be an epic season for Brady and he will rise to the top yet again proving that he is the NFL's top quarterback by being named Most Valuable Player. 

Super Bowl XLVII Will Be a Rematch of Super Bowl XLVI

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    This is definitely bold, but I am rolling with it right now.

    Super Bowl XLVII will be a rematch of Super Bowl XLVI with the New York Giants and the New England Patriots meeting yet again for the Vince Lombardi Trophy. 

The New England Patriots Will Go 15-1 in 2012

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    The way that Super Bowl XLVI ended was absolutely heart-breaking for Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots.

    Belichick is going to have his team ready for some redemption in 2012 as he'll coach his team up and they'll rally off an incredible 15-1 record. 

The New York Giants Will Go 13-3

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    The New York Giants will not suffer any low points in the 2012.

    There will be no Super Bowl hangover.

    The Giants will have a solid 2012 regular season and post a 13-3 record on their way to the playoffs. 

The New England Patriots Will Win Super Bowl XLVII

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    As I predicted that the New York Giants and the New England Patriots will meet up again in Super Bowl XLVII, I believe that it's time for the Patriots to win it all.

    There's no facts behind this one—it's just a bold prediction by my gut feeling.

    If the Patriots meet the Giants in the Super Bowl, Bill Belichick will make sure that he does not lose to the Giants three times on the NFL's biggest stage. 

The Buffalo Bills Will Win Less Than 7 Games

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    The Buffalo Bills have a good thing going entering 2012. However, they play in the AFC East against two of the AFC's powerhouses in the New England Patriots and the New York Jets.

    With having to face the Pats and Jets a combined four times during the season, 2012 will be another bridge year for the Bills as they'll finish with less than seven wins. 

Ryan Fitzpatrick Be Benched at Some Points in 2012

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    The Buffalo Bills have Ryan Fitzpatrick locked up for a very long as time as he'll be under-contract all the way until 2018.

    However, Fitzpatrick struggled tremendously in 2011 as he threw 23 interceptions while posting a 79.1 quarterback rating.

    I believe that the Bills will have another option behind Fitzpatrick and he will be thrown in as the starter rather than Fitzpatrick. 

Matt Flynn Will Be the Miami Dolphins Starting Quarterback in 2012

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    This couldn't make much more sense.

    Former Green Bay Packers offensive coordinator Joe Philbin is the new head coach of the Miami Dolphins. So as he'll be installing his offense down on South Beach, then why not bring in Matt Flynn?

    Flynn has backed up Aaron Rodgers for the past four seasons and has great success as he's posted a career 92.8 quarterback rating while throwing nine touchdowns and five interceptions. 

Brandon Marshall Will Have a Career Year in 2012

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    With Matt Flynn at quarterback, this is the time for Brandon Marshall to prove that he's an elite wide receiver.

    Marshall has all the talent in the world but simply just needs someone to throw him the ball—and Flynn is the perfect guy. 

Peyton Manning Will Be the New York Jets Starting Quarterback in 2012

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    I have been saying this for quite sometime now—Peyton Manning will be released by the Indianapolis Colts and he will sign with Rex Ryan and the New York Jets. 

    Well at least that's my prediction. I know it's bold but I have a feeling it will happen. 

The Jets Will Win 11-Plus Games in 2012

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    With Peyton Manning as the New York Jets starting quarterback, they'll have one hell of a season in 2012.

    If Manning is New York's starter, I immediately believe that they're a Super Bowl contender and will easily win 11-plus games. 

Ray Rice Will Run for 1,500-Plus Yards in 2012

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    Ray Rice had quite the impressive season in 2011 as he ran for 1,364 yards and 12 touchdowns.

    In 2012, I believe Rice is going to get even better.

    He will emerge as the NFL's top running back as he'll compile 1,500-plus rushing yards and score close to 20 touchdowns. 

The Baltimore Ravens Will Win the AFC North

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    Behind the legs of Ray Rice, the Baltimore Ravens will have a successful regular season in 2012.

    I believe that Rice will carry the offense and that their defense will be as suffocating as ever as they win the AFC North. 

The Cincinnati Bengals Will Earn a Playoff Spot

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    Following a 9-7 playoff season in 2011, the Cincinnati Bengals will continue to take steps forward and will earn a Wild Card spot in 2012.

    I am predicting that the Bengals will finish with at least 10 wins and will make a lot of noise in 2012. 

Andy Dalton Will Throw for 30 Touchdowns in 2012

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    Following an incredible rookie season, Andy Dalton will emerge as one of the NFL's better passers in 2012.

    Dalton threw for 20 touchdowns with only 13 interceptions last season for the Cincinnati Bengals and I see Dalton taking a huge step forward as he'll throw for 30 touchdowns in 2012. 

Robert Griffin III Will Be the Cleveland Browns Starting Quarterback in 2012

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    Get ready Cleveland Browns fans: Robert Griffin III is coming to town and he is going to be quite the show. 

    With the fourth overall pick in the 2012 NFL draft, the Browns will be selecting Baylor's RG3. 

Robert Griffin III Will Produce Cam Newton-Like Numbers in 2012

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    I don't see Robert Griffin III throwing close to 4,000 yards in 2012 but I do see him having a successful season much like Cam Newton did this past year.

    I believe RG3 will throw close to 20 touchdowns and have a minimal amount of interceptions while being a real threat running. 

The Pittsburgh Steelers Will Not Make the Playoffs in 2012

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    Despite finishing 12-4 during an injured-plagued season, I don't see the Pittsburgh Steelers having too much success in 2012.

    I see 2012 being a bit of a down year for the Steelers as their defense will continue to age right before our eyes. 

Arian Foster Will Run for 1,400-Plus Yards in 2012

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    Arian Foster had a pretty damn good season this past year, running for 1,224 yards and 10 touchdowns while playing in just 13 games.

    If Foster plays a full season, I see him racking up 1,400-plus rushing yards for the Houston Texans. 

The Houston Texans Will Win the AFC South

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    The AFC South was won by the Houston Texans in 2011 and now the divisional crown goes through Houston.

    With that being said, the Texans will again win their division in 2012. 

The Indianapolis Colts Will Draft Andrew Luck in the 2012 Draft

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    With the first overall pick in the 2012 NFL draft, the Indianapolis Colts will be selecting Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck.

    This draft pick will officially end the Peyton Manning era in Indianapolis. 

The Indianapolis Colts Will Struggle in 2012

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    With Andrew Luck as the Indianapolis Colts quarterback of the future, I see the team struggling a bit in 2012.

    Luck may be NFL-ready, but he still needs some time to adjust to the NFL level and will certainly need more weapons on the offensive side of the ball as well as a better defense to help him win games.  

Blaine Gabbert Will Bounce Back in 2012

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    I know that Blaine Gabbert struggled horrendously in 2012 as he posted a 65.4 quarterback rating while completing just 50.8 percent of his passes.

    However I see the Jacksonville Jaguars adding a few more offensive pieces and Gabbert will bounce back just fine in 2012. 

Jake Locker Will Be the Starting Quarterback for the Tennessee Titans in 2012

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    The Jake Locker era will start in 2012 for the Tennessee Titans.

    Locker's stellar performance in 2011 (he threw for four touchdowns and posted a 99.4 quarterback rating in five games) makes me believe that he's ready to be a full-time starter for the Titans. 

Chris Johnson Will Return Back to Form in 2012

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    Chris Johnson struggled quite a bit in 2011 as he ran for just 1,047 yards in 16 games while averaging 4.0 yards per-carry and scored only four touchdowns.

    I don't see CJ2K struggling again in 2012.

    Expect 2012 to be a huge season for CJ2K. 

Tim Tebow Will Develop as an NFL Quarterback

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    Tim Tebow had a very successful 2011 season. Hee posted a 72.9 quarterback rating while throwing 12 touchdowns, compared to just six interceptions, and running in six touchdowns for the Denver Broncos.

    Tebow led his Broncos to the playoffs and will continue to develop as a quarterback in 2012.

    I have a strong feeling that Tebow will develop into a productive passer next season. 

Tim Tebow Will Lead Denver to the AFC West Crown

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    Yep—that's right. Tebow Time will continue in 2012. 

    Tim Tebow will lead the Denver Broncos to the AFC West divisional title in 2012. 

Matt Cassel Will Bounce Back in 2012

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    Matt Cassel had a lousy 2011 season for the Kansas City Chiefs as he threw for just 10 touchdowns and posted a 76.6 quarterback rating through nine games.

    I do believe that Cassel is a solid NFL starter who will have success in 2012 and return back to his Pro Bowl play. 

Carson Palmer Will Struggle in 2012 with the Oakland Raiders

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    The Oakland Raiders can thank Hue Jackson for this one. 

    Carson Palmer threw just 13 touchdowns compared to 16 interceptions last season through 10 games for the Oakland Raiders and his struggles will get much worse in 2012.

    I don't see Palmer lasting very long as Oakland's starting quarterback next season. 

Darren McFadden Will Continue to Emerge as a Superstar in 2012

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    If healthy, Darren McFadden is one of the top running backs in the NFL. 

    I see Run-DMC having one hell of a season next year if he's able to stay healthy. McFadden is such a threat on the ground as well as an explosive wide receiver that he has all the potential in the world to emerge as an NFL superstar. 

The San Diego Chargers Will Make the Playoffs in 2012

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    It's do or die time for Norv Turner and the San Diego Chargers.

    They're going to have some success in 2012.

    I don't see the Chargers winning the AFC West next year but I do see them posting a solid 10-6 record and earning themselves a Wild Card sport. 

Philip Rivers Will Have a Huge Season in 2012

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    Philip Rivers didn't have a great season in 2011 as he posted an 88.7 quarterback rating and threw 20 interceptions.

    I see Philip Rivers rebounding in a huge way in 2012, throwing close to 40 touchdowns. 

The Dallas Cowboys Will Not Make the Playoffs

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    The time to win for Tony Romo and the Dallas Cowboys is right now—but they will fail yet again.

    The Dallas Cowboys will be sitting at home for the 2012 playoffs. 

Jason Garrett Will Be Fired by the End of the 2012 Season

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    With the Dallas Cowboys missing out on the playoffs, Jason Garrett will be fired.

    I guarantee it. 

The Philadelphia Eagles Will Win Less Than Eight Games in 2012

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    The "Dream Team" will have another disappointing season in 2012.

    The Philadelphia Eagles are an extremely talented team but you cannot win games via free agency. I don't see Philly winning more than seven games next season. 

Michael Vick Will Struggle in 2012

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    Michael Vick will revert back to his playing days in Atlanta next season with the Philadelphia Eagles.

    I see Vick continuing to look to the run the ball first rather than being a passer which will result in major struggles in 2012. 

The Washington Redskins Will Lose More Than Five Games

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    Mike Shanahan's Washington Redskins finished 2011 with a 5-11 record and I don't see things getting any better.

    In fact, they'll get worse.

    I don't see the Redskins snagging any premiere quarterback this offseason which will result in the Washington winning no more then four games next year.

The Chicago Bears Will Finish 8-8 Again in 2012

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    The Chicago Bears suffered through an injury-plagued season this past year as they finished 8-8 despite losing Jay Cutler and Matt Forte.

    However, even if those two remain healthy in 2012, I don't see them finishing higher than 8-8 as the Green Bay Packers and Detroit Lions are just simply too good. 

The Detroit Lions Will Finish with 12 or More Wins

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    This is the year for the Detroit Lions—they'll improve their defense in the offseason and through the draft that will result in them winning the NFC North in 2012. 

    Matthew Stafford is only going to get better and he's going to make a ton of noise next season. 

The Green Bay Packers Will Less Than 11 Games in 2012

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    I see the Green Bay Packers playoff loss against the New York Giants carrying over into next season as they're going to struggle a bit.

    If the Packers don't improve their defense and find a quality running attack then Green Bay will finish with less than 11 wins. 

Christian Ponder Will Take Some Steps Forward in 2012

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    Christian Ponder played well in 2011 for the Minnesota Vikings as he threw 13 touchdowns but was picked off 13 times.

    I really like Ponder's potential and I believe he's going to take some steps forward next season. 

The Atlanta Falcons Will Not Make the Playoffs in 2012

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    I really think that the Atlanta Falcons 24-2 playoff loss against the New York Giants exposed Atlanta's weaknesses. 

    Honestly, I have zero faith in the Falcons and I believe that they're a bunch of frauds who will not make the playoffs next season. 

Cam Newton Will Lead the Carolina Panthers to the Playoffs in 2012

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    You heard it here first.

    I have a feeling that the Carolina Panthers will earn themselves a wild card spot in 2012 and Cam Newton will have an absolutely epic season throwing and running the ball. 

Cam Newton Will Emerge as an MVP Candidate in 2012

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    Cam Newton is not only going to lead the Carolina Panthers to the playoffs in 2012 but he's going to dominate the playing field. 

    I see Newton posting an 95.0 quarterback rating while throwing close to 30 touchdowns and running in about 15 touchdowns—fantasy owners, take note. 

The New Orleans Saints Will Win 14-Plus Games in 2012

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    The New Orleans Saints went 13-3 last season but only managed to clinch the No. 3 seed in the NFC.

    I believe that 2012 will be a different story as Drew Brees and his Saints will post 14 wins or more and clinch the top seed in the NFC. 

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers Will Win Less Than Five Games

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    The Carolina Panthers getting much better next season means that 2012 will be a long season for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

    The Bucs are a young football team that will go through yet another season of growing pains. 

Kevin Kolb Will Improve as a Starter in 2012

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    Kevin Kolb didn't have that great of a season last year with the Arizona Cardinals as he posted an 81.1 quarterback rating while tossing nine touchdowns and eight interceptions.

    The Cardinals are going to need to see some improvement out of Kolb next year. If he plays a full season, I believe he can be an effective passer. 

Alex Smith Will Have an Even Better Season in 2012

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    Alex Smith finally played like a legitimate starting quarterback this past season for the San Francisco 49ers as he posted a 90.7 quarterback rating while throwing 17 touchdowns and just five interceptions. 

    I believe that the interceptions will stay just a low in 2012. But he will throw close to 25 touchdowns next season. 

Mark Sanchez Will Be the Starting Quarterback for the Seattle Seahawks in 2012

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    This is a continuation of my plan that involves Peyton Manning signing with the New York Jets.

    With that being said, Mark Sanchez will end up being the Seattle Seahawks starting quarterback in 2012.

    Why? Because Sanchez and Pete Carroll have a history together dating back to their USC days. 

Sam Bradford Will Rebound in a Big Way in 2012

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    Sam Bradford played pretty terrible this past season as he threw six touchdowns and six interceptions in 10 games for the St. Louis Rams.

    With that being said, all of his struggles will end next season as he'll play much like his rookie season—but much better.

    I see Bradford finishing with about 25 touchdowns and only 10 interceptions with a 90.0 quarterback rating.