The AFC East: A Race to the Finish

Frances White@WestEndGirl62Analyst IIMay 16, 2009

MIAMI - NOVEMBER 23:  Wide receiver Wes Welker #83 of the New England Patriots breaks free from a tackle attempt by linebacker Akin Ayodele #51 of the Miami Dolphins at Dolphin Stadium on November 23, 2008 in Miami, Florida.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)

Last year saw a significant upgrade in talent and toughness in the AFC East. 

Miami Dolphins: The "Tuna", Bill Parcells got tired of being on dry land.  He loaded up his footballs and landed in Miami in 2007.  Since then he has methodically cleaned house as only the "Tuna" could do. 

He turned Miami from doormat to a team to be respected under Tony Sporano who took the Dolphins to the playoffs. Last season the Dolphins and the Patriots split the season series the Patriots blew them out in the week five game.

The secondary was mediocre unlike the Patriots they were able to mask it enough to make the playoffs.

Look for Miami to avenge that week five loss and challenge themselves to sweep the regular season games.

Buffalo Bill: have sold its soul to "Little Nicky" himself, Terrell Owens. He even brought his own reality show to mini-camp. Give it to them its a great PR move; who ever thought we would be talking Buffalo Bills and offseason in the same sentence.

Getting Owens is certainly an upgrade at receiver but for now T.O.'s loud entrance will see them go out with a whimper again.

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New York Jets: J-E-T-S Jets! Jets! Jets! New England's rivals are the New York Jets and Miami Dolphins.  Six degrees of separation stacked with former players, and coaches.

The Jets hit the jackpot when they landed golden boy Mark Sanchez; the media have even dubbed him as a pseudo-Joe Namath. The bright lights of the New York media can turn a star athletes game to mush. 

Let's hope he holds up when he sees his only weapon is Jerricho Cotchery. The defensive line is a little old with no prospects behind them.

New England Patriots: New England has a more balanced roster than  all of the teams in its division. Tom Brady is back and all reports are that he is either on or ahead of schedule. They've brought in Alex Smith via trade at the tight-end position to use as extra protection against the pass rushes of the teams in their division. 

They have infused the defense with youth and most of all a healthy Adalius Thomas. 

Prediction: Miami is going to make it tough, but look for New England to make the playoffs and win the division.