50 Bold Predictions for the NFL over the Next Decade

Tony Santorsa@@TonySantorsaSenior Writer IIMarch 5, 2012

50 Bold Predictions for the NFL over the Next Decade

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    Before I even begin, I would like to point out that the most recent decade was probably the most exciting eras of football that any one of us have ever seen.

    And with that being said, what's not to say that the next decade isn't going to be just as good, but if not better?

    In that spirit, let's take a look at my 50 bold predictions for the NFL over the next decade. 

The NFC Will Win More Super Bowls Than the AFC

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    Since the turn of the decade, the NFC has won both Super Bowls with the New York Giants this year and the Green Bay Packers a year ago.

    With that being said, I believe that the balance of powers have shifted and that the NFC will dominate the AFC this decade—much like what the AFC did from 2000-2010, with the AFC winning seven Super Bowls. 

The Baltimore Ravens Will No Longer Have an Elite Defense

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    With guys like Ray Lewis, Ed Reed and Terrelle Suggs getting up there in age, I think that it's safe to say that the Baltimore Ravens will no longer have an elite defense in the upcoming seasons.

    Age has simply caught up to one of the most dominant defenses that we have ever seen in the NFL. 

The Baltimore Ravens Will Not Win a Super Bowl

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    As stated in the previous slide, the Baltimore Ravens will no longer have an elite defense, which means that they will not be winning a Super Bowl in the next decade.

    So what does that mean? Ed Reed will retire without winning a Super Bowl ring; that is, unless if he doesn't choose to play somewhere else. 

The Cincinnati Bengals Will Play in a Super Bowl

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    With the likes of Andy Dalton and A.J. Green, I really like where the Cincinnati Bengals are heading into the future.

    With that being said, I truly believe that they have a solid core of Dalton and Green, and as long as they continue to surround them with talent, then I think we'll see these Bengals in a Super Bowl one of these days. 

Robert Griffin III Will Be a Cleveland Brown

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    The city of Cleveland better get ready, because I can confidently state that the Cleveland Browns will do whatever it takes to trade up and draft Robert Griffin III at No. 2 overall.

    With that being said, the Browns will now have a franchise quarterback in the likes of RG3. 

Robert Griffin III Will Win Rookie of the Year in 2012

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    Forget Andrew Luck; Robert Griffin III is going to win Rookie of the Year in 2012—this man is the real deal.

    When all is said and I done, I am going to boldly predict that RG3 will have a much better career than Luck. Just a hunch. 

Ben Roethlisberger Will Win an NFL MVP Award

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    Ben Roethlisberger has just about it all right now, but there is one thing that is lacking in his trophy room: an NFL MVP award.

    However, that will change in the upcoming seasons, as I believe that he's only going to get better with age and will prove to the NFL how elite he really is. 

The Pittsburgh Steelers Will Not Win a Super Bowl

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    Mike Tomlin and his Pittsburgh Steelers had their fair share of success over the recent decade as they played in three Super Bowls and won a total of two of them.

    However, I am going to predict that the Steelers run of dominance will soon come to an end as their defense is rapidly aging and the balance of powers will shift in the AFC North.  

Jay Cutler Will Not Last as the Chicago Bears Quarterback

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    Jay Cutler is one of the most talented quarterbacks in the NFL today, but he has yet to play at an elite level—he has yet to reach his potential.

    With that being said, I do not see him lasting too much longer with the Chicago Bears, and I believe that he'll be replaced sometime in the near future. 

Matthew Stafford Will Win an NFL MVP Award

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    If Matthew Stafford can stay healthy, he will win himself an NFL MVP award at some point of his career. He is just that good.

    Just look at his first ever full 16 game season this past year: He threw for 5,038 yards while tossing 41 touchdowns and posting a 97.2 quarterback rating. 

Calvin Johnson Will Set the NFL Single-Season Record for Touchdown Receptions

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    You may think I'm crazy and that this one is a stretch, but Calvin Johnson is just that dominant.

    This past season, Megatron caught 16 touchdowns and was virtually unstoppable.

    As long as Matthew Stafford and Megatron continue their dominance together, I can guarantee to you that he will break Randy Moss' single-season touchdown reception record of 23 in the near future. 

The Detroit Lions Will Win a Super Bowl

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    At last. 

    The Detroit Lions will win a Super Bowl in the next decade on the backs of Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson. 

The Green Bay Packers Will Win Another Super Bowl

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    Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers are going to be dominant for a very long time, and they will continue their success heading into 2012.

    With that being said, sometime in the near future, the Packers will be hoisting the Vince Lombardi Trophy yet again. 

Christian Ponder Will Develop into a Pro Bowl-Caliber Quarterback

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    Christian Ponder may never be an elite quarterback, but I do see him making a few Pro Bowls in his day.

    Ponder has all the talent to be a solid NFL quarterback, but the thing is, the Minnesota Vikings need to surround him with talent, and until then, he's just an average player. 

The Houston Texans Will Win a Super Bowl

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    Just take a look at the Houston Texans roster—they're pretty young on defense and have one of the most talented offenses in the entire NFL.

    There's no way around it: The Houston Texans will win a Super Bowl in this decade. 

Peyton Manning Will Never Play as an Indianapolis Colt Ever Again

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    This may not be all that bold—but it's pretty stunning.

    The Peyton Manning era is all but over with the Indianapolis Colts. 

Andrew Luck Will Struggle at Times with the Indianapolis Colts

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    Andrew Luck may be the most talented and hyped-up quarterback that we have ever seen enter the NFL, but there will be a learning curve.

    Luck will not immediately be a dominant quarterback. It's going to take time, considering he has some big shoes to fill. 

The Indianapolis Colts Will Struggle to Make the Playoffs

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    Let's put it this way: If the Indianapolis Colts don't surround Andrew Luck with talent, then there is no chance that they'll make the playoffs.

    Either way, Luck is going to struggle at times, but I don't see Indianapolis making the playoffs very often in this decade. 

Blaine Gabbert Will Not Make It as Quarterback of the Jacksonville Jaguars

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    Blaine Gabbert is going to be remembered as one of the biggest busts in NFL history.

    I am predicting that Gabbert will not make it with the Jacksonville Jaguars and will simply be replaced in a few seasons.

    I suppose it may not be all of Gabbert's fault, as I don't see the Jaguars doing too much to help his development as an NFL quarterback. 

Jake Locker Will Emerge as an Elite Quarterback

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    The Tennessee Titans are doing a great job right now, as they're doing all the right things in the development of Jake Locker.

    When Locker's time comes to be the Titans' starting quarterback, he is going to shine and ultimately emerge as an elite quarterback.

    He's just that talented. 

Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons Will Not Make It Past the Divisional Round

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    Ever since Matt Ryan took over as the starting quarterback of the Atlanta Falcons, they have yet to win a playoff game.

    As of right now, Ryan is 0-3 in the playoffs, but will win a few playoff games in the next decade. But, I do not see Atlanta ever making it to the NFC Championship. 

Cam Newton Will Win an NFL MVP Award

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    Is this really that bold? I mean, Cam Newton is one of the most talented and dynamic quarterbacks that the NFL has to offer.

    Newton is going to emerge as an elite quarterback and will win at least one NFL MVP award. 

The Carolina Panthers Will Make It to the Super Bowl

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    I'm not too sure if the Carolina Panthers will win a Super Bowl—because they're just so young right now.

    However, I do have faith in Cam Newton, and I do see them making a few playoff runs in the next few seasons—that is, as long as they continue to surround Newton with weapons. 

The New Orleans Saints Will Not Make It to the Super Bowl

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    I think the time has come and passed for the New Orleans Saints—I just don't see them winning a Super Bowl anytime soon.

    Drew Brees may be an elite quarterback, but their defense doesn't impress me at all, and that will ultimately be the downfall of them in the next few seasons. 

Drew Brees Will Throw 49 Touchdowns at Some Point

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    Drew Brees already holds the single season record for most passing yards in a season, but he will come very close to breaking Tom Brady's record of 50 touchdowns in a season.

    However, I see him falling just short, as he will only reach 49 touchdowns.

    Now, if you ask me: This is a very bold prediction. 

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers Will Return to Being the Laughingstock of the NFL

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    Hey Bucs fans, it's time to find some paper bags to put over your heads, as your Tampa Bay Buccaneers are not going anywhere fast in the near future.

    I just have a feeling that the Bucs are simply going to be a complete joke in the near future. 

The Buffalo Bills Will Make the Playoffs on a Regular Basis

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    I really like where the Buffalo Bills are going, and I do have faith in them.

    As long as they continue to do what they're doing, then the Buffalo Bills will always be a playoff contender. 

Peyton Manning Will Be the Starting Quarterback of the Miami Dolphins

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    Here it is: my Peyton Manning prediction.

    He will be a Miami Dolphin this season. 

The New England Patriots Win One More Super Bowl

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    Yep—that's right.

    Tom Brady and the New England Patriots will go out on top. Brady will add his fourth Super Bowl ring to his remarkable legacy as his career winds to an end. 

Bill Belichick Will Be Labeled as the Greatest Coach in NFL History

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    As the New England Patriots will win yet another Super Bowl in the near future, Bill Belichick will be labeled as the greatest coach in NFL history.

    Some may believe he already is, and some may believe that he never will be—but this is just my bold prediction. 

The New York Jets Will Never Win a Super Bowl

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    Keep dreaming, Rex Ryan.

    According to my bold predictions, I don't see the New York Jets ever winning a Super Bowl under Rex Ryan. 

Mark Sanchez Will Not Last as a New York Jet

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    I actually do believe in Mark Sanchez and do believe that he's very talented, but I just don't think he's a very good fit with the New York Jets.

    Sanchez will not last with the Jets, and perhaps a chance of scenery will change up his career. 

Rex Ryan Will Be Fired Sooner Rather Than Later

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    Rex Ryan may continue making his Super Bowl predictions, but none of them are ever going to come true.

    However, I do have a prediction for you: As long as Ryan's predictions keep failing, then he will ultimately be fired as head coach of the New York Jets. 

Tony Romo Will Not Last as the Quarterback of the Dallas Cowboys

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    Before you know it, Jerry Jones is just going to get so sick of Tony Romo, and he's going to cut ties with his franchise quarterback.

    I just don't believe in Romo, and I don't see him lasting too much longer with the Dallas Cowboys. 

Eli Manning Will Continue to Emerge as an Elite Quarterback

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    Eli Manning already has two Super Bowl rings, and now, he's going to start putting up some huge numbers—he is going to continue to develop as an elite quarterback.

    You can't spell "elite" without "Eli." 

The New York Giants Won't Win Another Super Bowl

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    The New York Giants have already won two Super Bowls, and I don't see them winning another one for quite sometime.

    Why? Simply because the NFL is so competitive, and it is so difficult to be competitive on a consistent basis. 

Michael Vick Will Not Reach the Elite Level

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    Despite agreeing to a massive six-year, $100 million contract, Michael Vick will not play like a $100 million player.

    Vick will struggle in the upcoming seasons with the Philadelphia Eagles and is going to be a complete waste of talent.

    What will his downfall be? His health. He will simply not be able to stay healthy. 

The Philadelphia Eagles Will Struggle to Compete for the Playoffs

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    As I previously stated in the slide before, Michael Vick will struggle as quarterback of the Philadelphia Eagles, and that will directly result in the Eagles struggling in the near future.

    I just don't have too much faith in the Eagles, and I don't believe that they'll have a bright future. 

Matt Flynn Will Be the Starting Quarterback of the Washington Redskins

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    The Washington Redskins will lose out on Peyton Manning and Robert Griffin III, but they will not miss out on Matt Flynn.

    Flynn will be the Washington Redskins' quarterback of the future. 

Matt Flynn Will Emerge as a Pro Bowl Quarterback with the Washington Redskins

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    From what I have seen from Matt Flynn, I really do like the way his future is starting to shape up.

    Flynn has all the tools and talent to be a great quarterback, and I see him making a few Pro Bowls throughout his career. 

Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos Will Continue to Succeed

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    Tebow Time will continue! Tebow Magic will live on!

    Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos are going to have a very bright future together and will make the playoffs on a consistent basis. 

Matt Cassel Will Emerge as a Pro Bowl-Caliber Quarterback

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    No one has any faith in Matt Cassel, but I do.

    I believe that he will play like he did in 2010, when he made the Pro Bowl, and I truly believe that he'll be the starting quarterback of the future for the Kansas City Chiefs and will make the Pro Bowl a few times. 

Carson Palmer Is Going to Fail Miserably

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    Carson Palmer really convinced me this past season that he is no longer suited to be a quarterback in the NFL.

    I have no faith in him.

    Palmer will struggle from here on out and will be benched as the Oakland Raiders quarterback in the near future. 

The San Diego Chargers Will Play in a Super Bowl

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    At last: Philip Rivers and the San Diego Chargers will play in at least one Super Bowl.

    The Chargers are just such a talented group of players that it's only a matter of time.

    However, I don't believe that they'll have what it takes to win the big game. 

Kevin Kolb Will Fail as the Starting Quarterback of the Arizona Cardinals

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    Kevin Kolb will be remembered as one of the biggest disappointments in NFL history.

    Kolb was had so much hype around him when the Philadelphia Eagles shipped him west to the Arizona Cardinals, but he struggled all of last season, and I don't see things getting much better for him. 

Alex Smith Will Revert Back to His Old Ways

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    I'm sorry to say it, San Francisco 49er fans, but Alex Smith was just a one-year wonder this past season.

    I do not have any faith in Smith, and I believe that he will revert back to his old ways and continue down the path as being a huge draft bust. 

Colin Kaepernick Will Fail as Quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers

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    With Alex Smith struggling so bad, the San Francisco 49ers will have no choice but to replace him with Colin Kaepernick.

    However, there's just one problem: Kaepernick is going to fail, but I just don't believe he has what it takes to be a successful NFL quarterback. 

The San Francisco 49ers Will Never Win a Super Bowl

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    Wasn't 2011 a nice ride for the San Francisco 49ers? Well, don't get used to it, 49er fans.

    I just don't see the 49ers doing very well in years to come, simply because I am predicting that Alex Smith and Colin Kaepernick will fail as quarterbacks. 

Marshawn Lynch Will Emerge as an Elite Running Back

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    Marshawn Lynch had one incredible season this past season, as he ran for 1,204 yards while scoring 12 touchdowns.

    If he keeps this up, then Lynch will be labeled as one of the NFL's elite running backs. 

Sam Braford Will Never Reach the Elite Level

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    Sam Bradford has all the talent in the world, but to be honest with you, I do not see him ever emerging as an elite quarterback.

    Bradford may make a few Pro Bowls and put up some nice numbers, but I just don't think he has it in him to be a top-tier passer.