Before every NFL season begins, fans like to place forward their predictions for how they feel each and every team will perform over the four month regular season period.
For the most part, predicting the disappointing teams is no hard task. Teams such as St. Louis and Detroit come to mind, and at the end of the day, these are still struggling teams that are on the butt end of a league that continues to move forward.
However, when it comes to predicting the surprisingly disappointing teams, well lets just say it does take a rocket scientist to figure it out.
In previous seasons, we've seen many teams look impressive on paper, but completely fail in the regular season. Green Bay, New York and Jacksonville all come to mind, and all have felt their fair share of disappointment.
But what about this season? Who will be a surprisingly disappointing team?
It's a rather tough call, hopefully this list clears things up a little.
If you had told me three years ago that the New England Patriots would be featured on this list, I probably would have laughed at you.
Yes, believe it or not the Patriots are now what I like to call "a make it or break it team".
Sure they have prolific quarterback Tom Brady, along with Randy Moss, Wes Welker (upon return) and numerous other standouts. But when it's all said and done, the Patriots have taken their foot off the gas a little recently.
Last season saw the Patriots show their usual impressive patches. They dominated a handful of teams and continued to light up opposing defenses.
With this said though, at times the Patriots struggled to look like the same old team that was in the Super Bowl two seasons ago.
I guess it is a little foolish to expect New England to remain a dominant team all the time, but I think you'll agree they are far from where they one were.
Therefore, this season don't be surprised to see New England slip to third spot in the AFC East. The New York Jets are obviously a srong competitor now, and with Miami proving they have what it takes, the Patriots may find themselves in an unfamilar place all to quickly.
Realistically, making the call that the Steelers may be a struggling team in 2010 is now all that hard to make.
Given the fact that Ben Roethlisberger is set to endure some form of suspension, the Steelers new look on football could go from bad to worse very quickly.
Like the New England Patriots, the Pittsburgh Steelers were also a former Super Bowl winning team, that took their foot off the gas a little last season.
From the very beginning, the Steelers season seemed to jump off on the wrong foot. Troy Polamalu went down injured, and come midseason when the Steelers lost to the Chiefs, we all knew that something was wrong in Steeler nation.
As the year went on, the Steelers playoff chances died, and at the end of it all a rather surprising 9-7 record was posted.
So where does that leave the Steelers now? Easy, in a very bad place.
As the old saying goes "The quarterback is the most important position to a football team" and with Ben Roethlisberger engaging in controversy, the Steelers season may be a little rocky this year.
Staying in the AFC North, we now take a look at the Cincinnati Bengals, who funnily enough look to be one of the more impressive teams this season.
Since the NFL Draft, things have been looking up for the Bengals. They drafted well by gaining the likes of Jordan Shipley and Jermaine Gresham, and above all else appear to have a ton of confidence as September draws near.
However, unfortunately we have seen this from Cincinnati before, and on more than one occasion have failed to maintain motivation throughout the entire season.
For those reading this and thinking "Boy does he doubt the Bengals", please don't. I really do love this teams chances. But given their track record, it could go either way.
To me, the most worrying thing is injuries. If Carson Palmer goes down, which God knows he has a lot in the past, things will go south quickly in Cincy.
Who knows, the Bengals may prove me wrong, and I hope they do. For now though, they may be a surprise disappointment in 2010.
Notice the AFC trend yet?
Yep, now it's time to focus on the San Diego Chargers. For the most part, the Chargers have been a fairly consistent team, that is until they reach the postseason.
They are still a rather young side, and although fans do criticize Norv Turner, he has done wonders for this franchise in the past.
But what is there to show for it? That's right, nothing, and perhaps this is the biggest criticism the Chargers still face.
However, aside from championship success, it is the Chargers key losses this offseason that may affect them a little.
Firstly, LaDainian Tomlinson is now a Jet. Sure he wasn't the greatest back toward the end of his Charger career, but he was reliable, and now a ton of pressure rests on Ryan Matthews' shoulders.
Secondly, the Chargers also lost Antonio Cromartie, a key defensive motivator that was a team leader at times for San Diego. Some fans may argue that he wasn't all he is made out to be, however when a team loses a key influence like Cromartie, normally some side effects occur.
Let's face it, the Chargers have had a ton of good runs in past seasons. Consecutive seasons of 0-4 starts have plagued the Chargers, to only be turned around by push after push toward the playoffs.
Perhaps San Diego is due for a poor season. They may not slip to below .500, but with the loss of two key players and the addition of some rookies, expect the old San Diego train to not chug quite as loudly this season.
Finally we step out of the AFC, and take a look at an NFC franchise, the San Francisco 49ers.
Right now, it is all smiles in San Francisco. The 49ers drafted extremely well, and the addition of Mike Iupati, Anthony Davis and Taylor Mays has made the 49ers a considerable sleeper team in 2010.
Still, the same problem arises when considering the 49ers. Can Alex Smith throw the ball well?
In recent years, the answer is a solid no. He's had some bright patches, but has had several issues in his mechanics. Not only that, he also failed to receive any real protection from his lineman, and that was obviously San Francisco's main focus in the Draft.
For the 49ers to have a great season, not many things need to happen. They are in a severely weak division, and more or less can stride toward the postseason should all things pan out/
However, the 49ers do need to start functioning as a team. No more half played games, and no more hit and miss performances.
If San Francisco can excel at this, great, they should reach the postseason. If they fail though, they may suffer, and given how hard it has been for the 49ers to function well as a unit, they may not be as dominant as some people have listed them to be.
Ah, the Eagles, the dominant NFC East team that continues to impress us all.
This season though, something tells me that the Philadelphia Eagles are in for a rough ride.
I think that just about everybody has been able to figure out recently that a lot rests on Kevin Kolb's shoulders this season. No Donovan McNabb, and now Andy Reid's men are faced with a mammoth task of not only keeping up in the East, but posting wins on the board.
The other issue for the Eagles is talent. Brian Westbrook is gone, and the only real standouts are DeSean Jackson and Asante Samuel, both of whom are Pro Bowl caliber players.
Disappointment this season may be unexpected for Eagle fans. As much as some of you may hate Philadelphia, they are a reasonably smart city, and can surely recognize the feat that awaits them this season.
Come this time next year, we may be talking about Philadelphia in a totally different way. A below .500 season? We'll have to wait and see, but things do look to be a little tougher for the Eagles this season.
Like the Philadelphia Eagles, the Arizona Cardinals also have some quarterback concerns heading into the regular season.
Gone is the era of Kurt Warner, and we step into what is the questionable new beginning for young Matt Leinart, who we have seen glimpses of in the past.
For the Arizona Cardinals, there highly explosive ways have been a joy to watch. Larry Fitzgerald is nothing but pure talent, and head coach Ken Whisenhunt has a firm grip on this franchise.
However, the losses that Arizona has endured this offseason don't put forward a winning equation for 2010.
Not only has Kurt Warner retired, key wide receiver Anquan Boldin now laces his boots up in Baltimore. As significant a loss as this is for Matt Leinart, it is also a loss for Larry Fitzgerald, as he has lost his wide receiver buddy.
Given that the Cardinals do have a rather weak division to contend in, the odds are ultimately stacked against them. So much talent has evaporated in a blink of an eye, and now an obvious rebuilding phase awaits them.
How they handle it will determine their future, but for now the Cardinals are amongst the favorites when it comes to disappointment.
It's probably no surprise to anyone to see the Denver Broncos featured on this list.
Still, there is no denying that this team could be facing some turmoil very, very soon. The reality that faces Denver is simple, win or be labeled as failures.
The pressure that is on Denver is also very simple. Josh McDaniels is on an intense hot seat right now, and given the fact that all three of his quarterbacks could fail one after the other in an almost domino affect, only further rubs salt in the wound.
For those optimistic fans that still remain behind Denver, good on you, I admire your loyalty. However, I am more of a realist, and the odds really don't favor Denver right now.
Some may say that the Broncos were a mile high when they drafted Tim Tebow, but we'll have to wait and see. Aside from that though, a disappointing season in Denver will only further worsen the situation for the future.
As much as I'd love to sit here all day and believe that the Washington Redskins will win the NFC East, I still don't buy into it.
"Why?" I hear you ask, well it's simple, the Redskins are still short of any predominant wide receivers.
So why is this a concern? Again, it is simple, as Donovan McNabb notably struggles when he lacks throwing options in a long and drawn out season. Gone are the days of the DeSean Jackson luxury, and now McNabb faces a struggling team that he must turn around.
It is a feat that I like to think McNabb can achieve. However, it will test him, and it will test him hard.
Once again, lets face it, the Redskins have suffered a lot in recent years, and with the Cowboys looking to be the favorites in the NFC East, things may only continue to down spiral.
For the Redskins, I do believe that finishing in second or third could be labeled as an accomplishment. But if a lousy forth spot is all that is achieved, then it may all be looked back on as a rather predictable season.
There is no other quarterback in the league that I admire more than Jason Campbell right now. He's grabbed the bulls by the horns, and tackled quite possibly the hardest and most perplexing team in all of football.
Still, there is a ton of pressure on Jason's shoulders. Firstly, he himself must play well. Secondly, he must also group the Raiders together, and get them functioning as a team unit, rather than individuals.
For the Raiders to achieve success, all of this plus lots more must happen. A lot of it also has to happen off the field, as Al Davis' antics still act as a problem on the sidelines.
But as much as people love the new look Raiders post 2010 Draft, we've seen that as much talent as this team has, they still fail.
So why will we see a different side in 2010? That's the question I'd like an answer to.
Disappointment? Maybe, who knows the Raiders could put forward a handful of more wins than they did in 2009. However until they really look impressive, they are still set for some concerning times ahead.