Thursday, September 8, 2011

NFL 2011 Preview: NFC West

Check out "All World All Sports"

-Digger's Daily-

Plenty of new faces on NFC West teams heading into 2011 action. New coaching staff in San Francisco. New signal callers in Arizona and Seattle. Perhaps only one team remains somewhat intact and improving in football's weakest division - St. Louis Rams.

1 - St. Louis Rams
Offense: QB Sam Bradford leads the charge. Bradford finally has legitimate WR targets - Mike Sims-Walker, Danario Alexander, Danny Amendola, Brandon Gibson and rookie Lance Kendricks. Offensive line healthy. Excellent depth behind oft-injured starting RB Steven Jackson (Cadillac Williams, Jurious Norwood). Plenty of weapons. If they're able to get in synch then this group will score in bunches vs weak West defenses.
Defense: Not great but improving nonetheless. Big things expected from pass rushers on the line. Rams drafted North Carolina's Robert Quinn to spice up a sack line featuring James Hall & Chris Long. LB's and DB's remain a concern. Rams need to improve on interceptions (3rd worst) and takeaways. If the defense clicks, then this team will impress. Don't expect too much too soon.
Prediction: Will dominate West. Question remains how well they're able to cope with other divisional opponents? 10 wins.

2 - Arizona Cardinals
Offense: It's only a two man offense for now. Newly acquired QB Kevin Kolb to stud WR Larry Fitzgerald is all they have on paper. Todd Heap at TE will get a few looks as well. RB is a huge question mark with Beanie Wells as full time starter and lack of depth really hurts this squad at all positions. Ball control will be difficult to achieve. Arizona's porous defense will put their offense in catch-up mode more often than not.
Defense: 31st ranked in 2010 changes their point of attack from 4-3 to 3-4. Cards must be nuts. 3-4 is only as good as the men up front and Cards front line is not good. They also lack defensive play-makers. It's going to be a long year for new defensive coordinator Ray Horton.
Prediction: Can any team other than Rams win more than 6 games? Doubtful.

3 - San Francisco 49ers
Offense: New coaches all around. Same old under performing players starting with QB Alex Smith. Can't put all the blame on Smith. Horrific offensive line doesn't give play-makers a chance to run routes or find open lanes. All they've been good for is opening lanes for free shots at oft-injured quarterbacks. Frank Gore, Vernon Davis, Delanie Walker and Michael Crabtree present Smith fine targets if he survives daily game day beatings.
Defense: Took a beating in off season losing a few key players. Carlos Rogers and Donte Whitner were signed to help an anemic secondary. SF hopes rookie pass rusher Aldon Smith lives up to his hype. 49ers D was hit or miss in 2010. Expect more of the same in 2011.
Prediction: Lucky to win 6.

4 - Seattle Seahawks
Offense: Tavaris Jackson is their new gunslinger. His signing has been ripped by local prognosticators who love tearing apart their QB's. Marshawn Lynch and Justin Forsett don't scare anyone rushing out of the backfield - especially behind a terrible offensive line. These guys will have a very difficult time moving the ball.
Defense: A new look younger and faster unit will spend far more time on the field then their counterparts. This was a team giving up points by the bunches in 2010. Not expecting much to change in 2011.
Prediction: NFC West cellar dwellers.

Up next - AFC East

No comments:

Post a Comment