Remember last year, when the Broncos were 6-0 to start the year? Or the Saints going till 13-0 and the Colts till 14-0?
Or Wes Welker coming out of nowhere for the Patriots? Or Brett Favre dominating like he did in the past?
Or the Giants finishing 8-8 after a 5-0 start? Or the defending Super Bowl champion Steelers having a terrible year? Or the Jets getting into the playoffs by a questionable decision and then moving just 30 minutes away from the Super Bowl?
And who would have thought that the Saints would win the Super Bowl? Not me.
You never know in sports what will happen and what won't. Remember three years ago, when the Blackhawks were arguably the worst team in sports? Then this past year they won the Stanley Cup. How about the Cavaliers? They dominated the last two regular seasons but couldn't get the job done against the Magic and Celtics. Or maybe the Rays this past week—they had the best record in baseball and couldn't win at home in Game 5.
The reason why I made this article is because people get too excited over things. For example, the Cowboys, Vikings and 49ers in the NFC were supposedly Super Bowl contenders, but they have a combined 2-12 record. It just proves that predictions don't matter.
Whatever. I have a list of the biggest surprise players and teams and the most disappointing players and teams. Also, I will predict the outcome of the divisions for the rest of the year.
Biggest Surprise Players
Kyle Orton, QB Broncos: 97.8 passer rating, 1,733 pass yards, eight TDs, three INTs
The Denver Broncos have not had a great year at 2-3, but Orton has had a remarkable year so far. He is on pace to have 5,546 passing yards for the year, which would by far break the NFL record. With the Broncos in a weak division with a very easy schedule featuring games against the Raiders, 49ers and Seahawks coming up, they better hope they keep Orton healthy.
Mark Sanchez, QB Jets: 91.7 passer rating, 902 yards, eight TDs, zero INTs
Now you are probably saying, "How can a guy with only 902 yards through five games be a surprise player?" Well, here's why he could be. Last year Sanchez had 12 TDs and 20 INTs. So far he is on pace for 26 TDs.
He has had a fantastic year so far, especially the games against the Patriots, Dolphins and Bills. A very easy schedule coming up with games against the Broncos, Lions and Browns should only help Sanchez get better.
Arian Foster, RB Texans: 564 yards rushing, four TDs, longest run 74 yards
A big surprise for a surprise team, Foster has been the best running back so far this year. With better numbers than Adrian Peterson and Chris Johnson, Foster and the Texans have something going for them.
Ahmad Bradshaw, RB Giants: 449 yards, three TDs, longest run 39 yards
The Giants have been impressive so far this in big part to Ahmad Bradshaw. He has mostly been the backup to Brandon Jacobs, but the Giants' biggest hope this year will most likely be Bradshaw.
LaDainian Tomlinson, RB Jets: 435 yards, three TDs, longest run 31 yards
Remember when the Chargers released LT and said he had nothing left? I do. LT has officially proved them wrong. With the Chargers having a horrible year, they probably wish they could have him back.
Brandon Lloyd, WR Broncos: 30 rec, 589 yards, three TDs, longest TD 61 yards
No, not Larry Fitzgerald. No, not Andre Johnson. No, not Brandon Marshall. Brandon Lloyd has been the best WR so far this year and will most likely continue his success as the No. 1 target for Kyle Orton.
Most Disappointing Players
Brett Favre, QB Vikings: 67 passer rating, 861 yards, five TDs, seven INTs
As the Vikings fell to 1-3 on Monday, with their only win coming against the Lions, they have to be in panic mode. A reason for that is Brett Favre. He has the same number of INTs this year as all of last year, and with a passer rating of 67, Minnesota is pretty much done for the year unless they go on a tear. A very hard schedule is coming up with the Cowboys, Packers, Patriots, Cardinals and Bears.
Carson Palmer, QB Bengals: 78.3 passer rating, 1,287 yards, seven TDs, six INTs
The Bengals have had a disappointing year so far due in part to Carson Palmer. The stats seem better than they are.
Clinton Portis, RB Redskins: 195 yards, two TDs, longest run 27 yards
The Redskins have been impressive so far, but the running game has been nowhere. The reason for that is Clinton Portis.
Biggest Surprise Teams
5. Jacksonville Jaguars
4. Washington Redskins
3. Chicago Bears
2. Kansas City Chiefs
1. Pittsburgh Steelers
Honorable mentions: New York Giants, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Arizona Cardinals
Biggest Disappointment Teams
5. New Orleans Saints
4. Carolina Panthers
3. San Francisco 49ers
2. Dallas Cowboys
1. Minnesota Vikings
Honorable Mentions: Cincinnati Bengals, Indianapolis Colts, San Diego Chargers
Here's a little extra video.
My division winners:
AFC East: New York Jets
AFC North: Baltimore Ravens
AFC South: Houston Texans
AFC West: Kansas City Chiefs
NFC East: Washington Redskins
NFC North: Green Bay Packers
NFC South: Atlanta Falcons
NFC West: Seattle Seahawks
Like the new article format? Send us feedback!