Let's for now speculate Brett Favre is back for another title run in '10... Green Bay piles on points... Chicago finally lives up to potential... and, Detroit fulfills dreams of winning at least one game.
1) Minnesota Vikings 6 NFC Championship fumbles, including two lost inside the red zone at key moments cost the Vikings a Super Bowl trip when they had every opportunity to blow out the eventual champion Saints. Favre will be back. So will a maturing and gelling team of gamers. Peterson must protect the football his number is called. As a safety precaution, Minnesota went after another RB in this years' draft. Stanford's powerful Toby Gerhart. Offense has it all. Defense must tamper their over aggressive play to eliminate long td's. Coaching staff is one of NFL's best groups. Vikings will be in the thick of things all year long. 12+ wins can be had again (health permitting).
2) Green Bay Packers Green Bay's stunning opening round overtime 51-45 loss stung. The Pack's defense entered the game on a roll. Until Kurt Warner completely dissected them completing 29 of 33 passes and 5 touchdowns. Needless to say opposing offenses will be testing this squads secondary early and often in 2010. No help came by way of draft so it appears Packers brass are comfortable with current talents turning it up a notch this year. Pack defensive lapses of letting teams march downfield in closing minutes is clearly what separates them from elite status.
3) Chicago Bears Jay Cutler was never able to live up to the savior status bestowed by local Chicago media groups. Lack of positive play making by wide receivers and an ineffective ground game severely hindered Bears chances of advancing up field. Bad field position and poor time of possession kept Bear defenders on the field for way too long. 2010 can go either way. Coach Lovie Smith is on the hot seat.
4) Detroit Lions Detroit pulled off another good paper draft. Problem is this organization's recent history seems to make rookies go bust. There's no upside in Motor City. Repeating two wins in 2010 might be a long shot. Lions combined 2008 & 2009 record? 2-30.