NFC West 2012 Schedule: Analyzing 49ers, Cardinals, Seahawks and Rams Seasons

Eric BowmanFeatured ColumnistApril 19, 2012

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JANUARY 22:  Alex Smith #11 of the San Francisco 49ers stands with head coach Jim Harbaugh of the San Francisco 49ers
during the fourth quarter of the NFC Championship Game against the New York Giants at Candlestick Park on January 22, 2012 in San Francisco, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

The NFC West was the butt of many jokes a year ago, but the division as a whole is improving. 

In the 2012 season, the San Francisco 49ers, Arizona Cardinals, Seattle Seahawks and St. Louis Rams will strive to not picking in the Top 10 of the 2013 NFL draft. 

If all four teams are going to accomplish that, each team has to manage to survive its brutal schedule. 

In addition to playing each other twice during the year, the NFC West teams will square off against teams from the NFC North and AFC East. 

That being said, here's a breakdown of each team's upcoming season. 


San Francisco 49ers

Home: Week 2 vs. Detroit, Week 5 vs. Buffalo, Week 6 vs. New York Giants, Week 7 vs. Seattle, Week 10 vs. St. Louis, Week 11 vs. Chicago, Week 14 vs. Miami, Week 17 vs. Arizona 

Away: Week 1 vs. Green Bay, Week 3 vs. Minnesota, Week 4 vs. New York Jets, Week 8 vs. Arizona, Week 12 vs. New Orleans, Week 13 vs. St. Louis, Week 15 vs. New England, Week 16 vs. Seattle 

Bye: Week 9 

Most Exciting Matchup: Week 15 vs. New England.

Deep into the season, we'll have an excellent idea where both teams stand. It's possible this could be a Super Bowl preview, and there is no doubt both teams will use this game as a means to measure just how good they really are. 

2012 Prediction: 11-5


Arizona Cardinals

GLENDALE, AZ - DECEMBER 04:  Quarterback Kevin Kolb #4 of the Arizona Cardinals talks with head coach Ken Whisenhunt after defeating the Dallas Cowboys in the NFL game at the University of Phoenix Stadium on December 4, 2011 in Glendale, Arizona. The Card
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Home: Week 1 vs. Seattle, Week 3 vs. Philadelphia, Week 4 vs. Miami, Week 6 vs. Buffalo, Week 8 vs. San Francisco, Week 12 vs. St. Louis, Week 15 vs. Detroit, Week 16 vs. Chicago

Away: Week 2 vs. New England, Week 5 vs. St. Louis, Week 7 vs. Minnesota, Week 9 vs. Green Bay, Week 11 vs. Atlanta, Week 13 vs. New York Jets, Week 14 vs. Seattle, Week 17 vs. San Francisco 

Bye: Week 10 

Most Exciting Matchup: Week 3 vs. Philadelphia.

Kevin Kolb was injured last year so he didn't get the chance to play against his former team. Seeing as how the Cardinals opted to pay Kolb this offseason, chances are very strong that he'll be the starter. Going head to head against his former team will be very thrilling to watch. 

2012 Prediction: 6-10 


Seattle Seahawks

GLENDALE, AZ - JANUARY 01:  Head coach Pete Carroll of the Seattle Seahawks congratulates Leon Washington #33 after scoring a touchdown during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on January 1, 2012 in Glendale,
Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Home: Week 2 vs. Dallas, Week 3 vs. Green Bay, Week 6 vs. New England, Week 9 vs. Minnesota, Week 10 vs. New York Jets, Week 14 vs. Arizona, Week 16 vs. San Francisco, Week 17 vs. St. Louis 

Away: Week 1 vs. Arizona, Week 4 vs. St. Louis, Week 5 vs. Carolina, Week 7 vs. San Francisco, Week 8 vs. Detroit, Week 12 vs. Miami, Week 13 vs. Chicago, Week 15 vs. Buffalo 

Bye: Week 11 

Most Exciting Matchup: Week 3 vs. Green Bay.

Pete Carroll told WQAM in Miami, via, that there will be an open QB race for the starting job. Despite that, I still think Matt Flynn wins it, so it'll be fantastic to sit back and watch him take on his former team and go head to head with Aaron Rodgers.

2012 Prediction:  7-9 


St. Louis Rams

Home: Week 2 vs. Washington, Week 4 vs. Seattle, Week 5 vs. Arizona, Week 7 vs. Green Bay, Week 8 vs. New England, Week 11 vs. New York Jets, Week 13 vs. San Francisco, Week 15 vs. Minnesota 

Away: Week 1 vs. Detroit, Week 3 vs. Chicago, Week 6 vs. Miami, Week 10 vs. San Francisco, Week 12 vs. Arizona, Week 14 vs. Buffalo, Week 16 vs. Tampa Bay, Week 17 vs. Seattle 

Bye: Week 9 

Most Exciting Matchup: Week 2 vs. Washington.

All signs are pointing to the Redskins picking Robert Griffin III with the No. 2 overall pick. Seeing two Heisman Trophy winners go toe to toe against each other will be great. Plus, since both teams had a very rough season a year ago, this game will be able to tell a lot about the progress each team has made in a year. 

2012 Prediction: 4-12 


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