NFL Predictions 2011: Picking the 5 Worst Teams in the NFL
Every year, 32 NFL teams enter the season hoping to win the Super Bowl.
Every year, 31 NFL teams fail to do so.
However, some teams fail much worse than others. There are always a handful of teams that cannot even manage to win six games.
So, which teams will be among the league's worst this season?
Here are my predictions, listed from best to worst.
5. Oakland Raiders
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I don't think I'm alone in saying this, but I just don't get Al Davis.
Last year, the Raiders had their first eight-win season since the Stone Age; Davis responded by firing his head coach and letting his best player walk in free agency.
Without Nnamdi Asomugha on the team, the Raiders' defense will regress badly. The Raiders' pound-the-ball style of offense requires a good defense to help keep the score down. Without it, Jason Campbell will be asked to throw the ball much more than he is comfortable.
All of this leads to the Raiders undoing all of the progress that they made last season and going back to a team that hopes to win five games.
4. Miami Dolphins
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The Dolphins finished 7-9 last season, but figure to regress this season in a tough AFC East.
Unfortunately, the Dolphins still have Chad Henne running their offense, which was stagnant last year, despite a talented receiving corps.
Now, the Dolphins are expecting injury-prone and overrated Reggie Bush to carry the load in their running game. When you put it together, you have an offense that doesn't figure to be that much better than the 17.1 points per game that they had last year.
The Dolphins have a decent defense, but it will not be enough to overcome their offensive ineptitude in a tough AFC East.
3. Arizona Cardinals
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Yes, I know that the Cardinals just traded for their franchise quarterback in Kevin Kolb. However, the Cardinals still have quite a few problems.
Let's start with Kolb himself. While some fans are viewing Kolb as an instant fix, he is in reality a long-term project that will not be great immediately. Keep in mind that Kolb has only started seven games in his NFL career, has only won three of them, has more interceptions than touchdowns and a career passer rating of 73.2.
All of this was achieved on a Philadelphia Eagles team where he was throwing to DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin and Brent Celek.
Yes, the Cardinals have Larry Fitzgerald, who individually is better than any of those three receivers, but the Cardinals let Steve Breaston walk in free agency, leaving them without a legitimate No. 2 receiving threat.
Fitzgerald is great, but he can't catch 300 passes in a season. Somebody else needs to step up to take pressure off of Fitzgerald.
In addition, the Cardinals have done little in the offseason to address a defense that was among the league's worst last year. And now, they're without their best corner.
The fact that the Cardinals are in the weak NFC West will help their chances of winning a few games, but don't expect too much in Kolb's first year with the team.
2. Cincinnati Bengals
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The Cincinnati Bengals, coming off a 4-12 season last year, are likely headed for a rebuilding year this season.
Veteran players Terrell Owens, Chad Ochocinco and Carson Palmer are off the team and have been replaced by second-year player Jordan Shipley and rookies A.J. Green and Andy Dalton.
With an extremely young group of core players, the Bengals have promise for the future. However, the limited offseason hurts the Bengals more than most teams, and they still have to deal with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens if they want to get out of the AFC North's basement.
1. Washington Redskins
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Rex Grossman or John Beck? That is the question.
Which mediocre quarterback will lead this mediocre team into oblivion?
The Washington Redskins have made little to no improvements to a running game that ranked 30th in the league last year or to a defense that ranked 31st in the league.
While disgruntled quarterback Donovan McNabb had to go, the Redskins desperately needed a legitimate replacement for McNabb and failed to find one.
Instead, they have John Beck, who is 0-4 as a starting quarterback in his career and hasn't started a game since 2007. They also have Rex "Wrecks" Grossman, who turned the ball over eight times last season (four interceptions, four lost fumbles) in only four appearances!
This is a recipe for an absolute disaster in Washington.