1. If you haven't seen already, TSO is now powered by Discord! This means that we will eventually be disbanding the embedded chat on the main forum page. Head to this page to learn more on how to integrate your TSO account with discord! https://traditionsportsonline.com/wiki/discord-integration/

2013 Team Previews

Discussion in 'Rookie Symposium' started by RRAHx2, Aug 24, 2013.

  1. RRAHx2

    RRAHx2 Cleared for Takeoff

    Aug 22, 2012

    Dallas Cowboys

    The Dallas Cowboys are the biggest name in the NFL. They are a household name, and have become a brand all of their own. They have the biggest fan base in the country according to merchandise sales, but their on-field performance has not been anything for that fan base to be proud of. That all is set to change this year as the team is under new ownership, and Anthony Hickson is talking "SB or bust" in the big D. America's team has the facilities and the personnel to be a legitimate threat this season, but will they be able to bring it all together.

    Roster Breakdown
    QB - Tony Romo is the starter and with his new contract extension bringing in $108M he is expected to do big things for Dallas. Romo has all-star talent, and great weapons but he hasn't been able to use those weapons efficiently. With the Cowboys going to a Zone Run scheme this season, Romo's numbers should go down a bit and he can be focused on being a game manager.

    RB - DeMarco Murray is going to be the workhorse for this team. His speed, and agility are great for making the first cut and getting upfield. Look for him to post great numbers this season as long as he can stay healthy. Behind him, Dallas has a stable of young RB's who can share the load.

    WR - Dez Bryant and Miles Austin are both still in charge of receiving duties for the Cowboys. They are both All-Pro caliber WR's that can produce when they're number is called. Anthony Armstrong and Dwayne Harris are both trying to earn the slot position, in what is sure to be a closely watched battle all pre-season.

    TE - Jason Witten has been the cornerstone of this franchise for many years. That is no different this year as he is the #1 option, again. Look for James Hanna to play a bigger role this season as well.

    OL - This is the main concern for Dallas' offense. The Cowboys don't have any "franchise players" on the offensive line. The RT and C positions are wide open, and a starter won't be announced until late in the pre-season. It should not surprise anyone to see Dallas pick up another OL or 2, before the season starts.

    There have been rumors swirling that the Cowboys are going back to an Attacking 3-4 scheme this year. If Dallas can land a solid ILB before the season starts, then this could be a real possibility.

    Season Outlook:
    A new owner in a tough division, with a team that hasn't been used before. I expect a decent outing, but only time will tell if this team can sneak into the playoffs.

    Good preview here:
    • Like Like x 3
  2. RRAHx2

    RRAHx2 Cleared for Takeoff

    Aug 22, 2012
    Get your's done before the season starts.

    oneshot24 - NE
    GDip - DEN
    Hitmhrd72 - JAX
    whatspeakyou - CHI
    nellycuz - PIT
    Snake Eyez - CIN
    Anthrax78 - DET
    The Rulah - WAS
    SmashMouthFB33 - STL
    mmorgan184 - CLE
    AwaLL - MIA
    Coachmedicis - BUF
    Crowe - SF
    BrewBomber - GB
    Chief9 - NYJ
    nicknick68 - NYG
    LeGeNd RiPs - BAL
    Automatik - AZ
    Wiznerd420 - MIN
    Elemnt - CAR
    lere2001 - PHI
    priestmvp - KC
    jay2149 - ATL
    GritzBlitz - NO
    Craig Brown - IND
    NateDawg - SD
    SFRANGER6969 - SEA
    Brandon S. - HOU
    Aspect1 - OAK
    RRAHx2 - DAL
    Cole Springer - TEN
  3. oneshot24

    oneshot24 Walk On

    Aug 20, 2012


    The New England Patriots have been one of the top teams in the AFC for over a decade, However this season will be their toughest test as 5 of their recievers from the 2012 season are no longer with the team, Also in the Off-Season Owner Kraft decided to sell his team The Buyer Shane Varno a long time Pats fan who Vows to bring another Lombardi Trophy to the city of Boston.

    When u think of Patriots offense u think of a lethal passing attack, However this season is very different. In the Off-Season Pats failed to ink Welker to a deal cut Lloyd, Let Woodhead walk and had to cut Hernandez after his Legal Issues. On Draft day Pats would Draft 2 WR, First Marshall Aaron Dobson who is 6'3" and has great Hands he should help Stretch the Field, Second Pats Drafted TCU Josh Boyce who is a work in Progress but has great speed and can play Outside and in the Slot. This Season Pats will look to Ridley and Vereen to make Big Plays out of the Backfield with Blount and Bolden Spelling them. The TE Situation is very Different from the past 3 seasons as Hernandez is Gone, Gronk and Ballard should be the top 2 Options with Fells and Hooman backing them Up. The OL Remains to be the same from last season.

    In the Off-Season Pats got SS Adrian Wilson and DT Tommy Kelly who should be Big Contributers. First lets start with the Defensive Line With Jones, Ninkovich, Kelly and Wilfork Pats look to be stout on Run defense and generate a constant Pass Rush. The Linebackers remain the Same and look to have another great season with Mayo leading them. The Defensive Backs look the same however with Talib having a full off-season with the Pats he looks to be a shutdown corner with Dennard playing Opposite from him and Mccourty playing FS full time and with Hard Hitting SS Adrian Wilson Pats want to be a top 10 defense again.

    Season Outlook
    With the tough Competition in the AFC East and Young Offense I see our team going through some Growing Pains early on and try to sneak into the Playoffs.
    • Like Like x 3
  4. SFRANGER6969

    SFRANGER6969 Walk On

    Aug 24, 2012

    Seattle Seahawks

    The seahawks were a surprise team last season and Coach Ranger hopes to take them further this season with all eyes on the NFC West title. This team is built to win by running the football and playing stingy defense and do not forget the support the team gets from the 12th Man at home games. Most of the core players on the team are around mid to late 20s so if the front office plays its cards correctly they could be contenders for several seasons to come.

    There is no question here Russell Wilson is the starter. He comes in rated 89 overall with 86 speed/ 76 awr/ 93 thp/ 86 tha/ 87 sac/ 85 mac/ 85 dac.

    Again no question here as Marshawn "Beast Mode" Lynch is easily a top 5 rb in the entire league at just 27yrs old and 96 overall this guy is going to truck his way to paydirt only to celebrate with his Skittles Dance. On 3rd downs the Seahawks have Turbin and Michael to step in as pass catching backs.

    The seahawks traded their #1 pick in the offseason to bring in playmaker Percy Harvin. Harvin will be the #1 WR here and will hope stretch the field which should in turn open up more running lanes for Lynch. Sidney Rice is still with the team and will be the #2 man with 6'4 height and 89 speed he can be a mismatch for teams with a small #2 CB. Golden Tate brings some speed to the slot and will look to improve in his 4th year as a pro. Rookie Harper and 2nd year man Kearse will also see the field this season.

    Zach Miller has the job for now but rookie Luke Willson will push for playing time and should eventually take over the #1 spot.

    The o-line is pretty young and the left side is clearly the strong side. If the left side cannot hold up the organization may look to bring in either a lg or lt to get through the season.

    The de are CRAZY!!! 4 guys rated 80 or higher and thats not including Irving who is 79ovr with 90speed!!!! Irving will be a starter but the other spot is up for grabs b/w Clemons/Avril/and Bennett. If you need a DE pick up the phone and contact this gm b/c the team has plenty to spare.

    The seahawks are starting Mebane and rookie Williams at dt. That is 634 pounds of SHUT DOWN THE RUN!!!! Good luck running b/w the tackles against this line

    The seahawks have two solid lbs in Wright and Wagner. The team may look to bring someone else in to take over the other outside spot.

    Sherman/ Browner/ Winfield lead the corners which is one of the best in the entire league. This group is big and physical and can shut down the passing game. At fs Earl Thomas leads the way with his playmaking ability followed by Kam Chancellor who can bring the wood.

    Hauschka will handle the kicking he has a good leg with 94 kpw/90 kac. Tate is currently #1 on the depth chart to handle KR and PR
    • Like Like x 3
  5. SmashMouthFB33

    SmashMouthFB33 Walk On

    Jul 21, 2012
    St. Louis Rams
    The Rams are a young football team on the rise and look to improve on their 7-8-1 record in 2012. To close the gap with the other teams in the very tough NFC West, the Rams will have to do better than 3-7 in their non-division games. Coach VanGiesen believes that will happen with a new infusion of young talent, along with free agent additions Jake Long and Jared Cook and many of the younger players getting even better. Now, it's up to the players to come through and make up the leadership void created by the departure of Steven Jackson.

    QB: Sam Bradford has heard the whispers that he hasn't been worth the first overall pick the Rams used on him in the 2010 draft. However, when given half a chance with protection and playmakers, he has shown the ability not only to play well, but to bring his team back in the fourth quarter of games. Bradford must silence his critics in 2013 for the Rams to continue to improve.

    HB: With the departure of Steven Jackson, the Rams will look to use a running back by committee approach. Daryl Richardson, Isaiah Pead and rookie Zac Stacy will all get their chance to tote the rock. Whichever back can show their grasp of the playbook the best will get first crack at being named RB 1.

    WR: The Rams made a splash on draft day by selecting two receivers out of West Virginia Tavon Austin and Stedman Bailey. Austin will be used in a variety of ways, and looks to make a huge splash in his rookie season. The only returning receivers from last year's roster are Brian Quick, Chris Givens and Austin Pettis. Quick is a big
    red zone target at 6-3 220lbs and Givens has big play capabilities. The Rams wide receivers are young, but very explosive.

    TE: Jared Cook brings downfield speed to the passing game and should be able to stretch the field and take advantage of mismatches with LBs and safeties. Lance Kendricks will be used as more of an H-back.

    O-Line: Clearly, the addition of Jake Long at LT is key. His arrival pushed Roger Saffold to RT. Harvey Dahl is set at RG and Scott Wells at center, but LG is open and will come down to a competition between Rokevious Watkins, Chris Williams, Shelley Smith and rookie Barrett Jones.

    D-Line: This group is clearly the teams best and deepest. Chris Long, Robert Quinn and William Hayes combined for 29 of the teams 52 sacks in 2012. Hayes and Eugene Sims will also move inside in some passing situations. On the inside, Michael Brockers played well as a rookie and teamed with Kendall Langford to help the Rams improve against the run and pass. Brockers has the potential to be a STUD.

    LBs: James Laurinaitis remains the anchor in the middle of the defense. Jo-Lonn Dunbar played well on the weak side last season, but very well could be moving to the strong side if rookie Alec Ogletree is a quick study and plays like the Rams expect. Rams coaches have compared Ogletree to longtime Titan Keith Bulluck.

    Secondary: The cornerback situation appears strong. The top three returning corners are Cortland Finnegan, Janoris Jenkins and Trumaine Johnson. Finnegan has been a mentor for Jenkins and Johnson. Finnegan is a feisty corner who makes a living in press coverage. Jenkins is a man to man corner who has shown the ability to make big plays vs the pass. Johnson has emerged as the nickel back. Darian Stewart is penciled in as one starting safety. The other safety position is up for grabs. Third-round draft choice T.J. McDonald will be in the mix, along with Matt Daniels and Rodney McLeod. IF McDonald can come in and pick up the defensive scheme quickly look for him to start at SS and Stewart at FS.

    Special Teams: Greg "The Leg" Zuerlein will handle the placekicking duties and needs to show more consistency down the stretch making his FGs. There is zero doubt about his leg strength. Johnny Hekker had a solid rookie season and will handle the punting duties. The return game was average at best, which paves the way for Tavon Austin to bring his electrifying ability to kickoff and punt returns.

    • Like Like x 3
  6. GDip

    GDip Walk On

    Jul 9, 2012
    Denver Broncos

    The Broncos have put themselves into position for a Super Bowl run but they also realize the window of opportunity is small, as they have a bunch of aging veterans who won't be around for much longer.

    Offense: On offense Denver has easily one of the top units in the league led by future HOFer Peyton Manning. In 2012, Manning's first year with the team, he showed a great developing chemistry with WR's Demarius Thomas and Eric Decker. In 2013, Manning has added the top slot receiver in the NFL when the team stole Wes Welker from AFC foe New England. The trio of WR should give defenses fits as they decide who is going to be getting the ball on any given play.
    The running game is still a work in progress for Denver. They released their most productive RB from last year in Willis McGahee. To replace him they will look to a stable of backs and probably employ a 'hot hand' mentality at the position. The team has young talent in speedster Ronnie Hillman and workhorse rookie Monte Ball. If one of those two can't step up to the challenge veteran Knowshon Moreno will get a chance.
    Clearly this will be an offense that will rely on Manning and the passing game. However, coach Gary Alan, has always been a strong proponent of the running game. It will be up to him to adjust his style a little and put the ball in the hands of his best players.

    Defense: The defense for the Broncos has gone through some changes this offseason. First off, they lost a prime piece in their pass rush when Elvis Dumerville couldn't figure out how to use a fax machine and didn't get his signed contract into the team by the leagues deadline. Shortly after, Dumerville agreed to a new contract with the Baltimore Ravens. To replace his sacks the Broncos are counting production from a group of guys. 2nd year DL Derek Wolfe showed he has great ability last year and is expected to improve, while they brought in Shaun Philips via free agency in hopes he'll provide pressure in obvious passing situations.
    The secondary has also seen a few moving pieces. Out is FA bust Tracy Porter in is talented but underachieving Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. DRC has really impressed coaches through offseason workouts and if he can hold his own opposite an aging Champ Bailey it should help the pass rush. In the nickel the Broncos have Chris Harris, probably one of the most underrated players in the league. At safety, the goat of last season's playoffs, Rahim Moore, is looking to come back and prove that he has learned from his mistake that cost the team a victory in the playoffs against the Ravens. The safety spot next to Moore is still an open competition. Returning starter Mike Adams has shown that he is a capable but unspectacular player. The team wants more playmaking from the position so look for veteran Quinton Jammer and newcomer Duke Ihenacho to all get shots at proving they are capable.

    Special Teams: Last year the Broncos made an in-season waiver claim that netted them one of the best return specialist in the NFL. Trindon Holiday is capable of taking any kick to the house so look for opposing kickers to avoid him.

    Outlook: Winning the AFC West isn't the goal this year, it's an expectation. How this team does in the playoffs will cement Peyton Manning as either an all-timer or a perennial playoff failure. This team has gone all in and is in a Super Bowl or bust mindset. Look for them be a favorite in the AFC it's just a matter of if they can come through when it counts the most.
    • Like Like x 4
  7. NateDawg

    NateDawg GT- MIZ Nighthawk

    Jun 15, 2010
    San Diego Chargers
    After a disappointing 7-9 season in 2012, the San Diego Chargers made some changes this offseason. Of course, this year will involve competing with an unbelievably stacked Denver Broncos team and a Kansas City Chiefs team that made some upgrades in the offseason. New coach Nathan Matt has high hopes for his team, but the way this team performs early in the season could determine whether San Diego will go into all-in rebuild mode or not.

    Quarterback: This is a big year for Philip Rivers. Although he is signed until 2016, he has been very underwhelming since signing his extension. This year, Rivers needs to prove that he can be the leader of what should be a much improved offense

    HB: Depth is the key thing San Diego has when it comes to HB. Coach Nathan Matt loves the potential in Ryan Matthews, but with his injury history and spotty play he is happy to have solid contributors in Danny Woodhead and Ronnie Brown. Expect San Diego to go to Matthews early, but keep his legs fresh with this depth.

    WR: After letting Vincent Jackson walk in free agency, there was much concern around San Diego around the passing attack. However, the team has now adjusted and should be much better in 2013. Last year, Malcolm Floyd led the team in receiving and they look to him to be a leader and do that again this year. If Mizzou WR Denario Alexander can stay healthy, this could be a very flashy group!

    TE: Assuming health for the 33 year old, you know what you're going to get from Antonio Gates. Rivers loves looking his way with his big frame and ability to move the chains. Him and Rivers have great chemistry, and the coaching staff looks to get every bit of talent from Antonio Gates while they can.

    Oline: This is a spot that clearly needed improvement after this group was a disaster last year. The coaching staff took a step in the right direction by drafting DJ Fluker with their first pick to sure up the RT position. However, his pass blocking is raw, which will keep him on the right side barring much improvement. However, this group still needs improvement so look for the coaching staff to improve this group in FA, trade, or in the draft next year.

    Dline: The starting line is a young and exciting group. Liuget, Reyes, and Thomas have a combined 6 years of experience, yet they are making plays in the NFL. If they continue to develop, this will be a very solid group for years to come.

    LB: This group is stacked on the outside with Jarrett Johnson, Melvin Ingram, and new addition Dwight Freeney. Of course, young Donald Butler is a stud in the Middle and new addition Monte Te'O will look to get in the news for his solid football play as a change.

    Secondary: This group was below average last year, giving up way too many passing yards. On top of that, the team lost both starting CBs from last year. They will be replaced by the young Shareece Wright and Derek Cox. Look for this group to have some growing pains at the beginning of the season as they look to build chemistry and develop into strong NFL starters.

    Special Teams: Scifres and Novak will continue to take the lead as the punter and kicker for San Diego. The KR/PR man is in question and will be decided during the preseason.
    • Like Like x 4
  8. Hitmhrd72

    Hitmhrd72 Walk On

    Apr 12, 2013
    Jacksonville Jaguars


    The Jaguars are in another rebuilding year with a new offensive and defensive scheme. The head coach noted while the team is finding their identity, they will certainly not lay down to opponents. He expects his players to compete until the last whistle. This team is poised to raise some eyebrows this season.

    QB: The question still remains if Blain Gabbert is the QB of the future for this team. This will be a make or break season for him. While there isn't really any real competition on the roster, Chad Henne is more than capable of running the offense if Gabbert can't get the job done.

    HB: The running back position is the best on the roster. MJD is healthy and ready to make an impact this year. Justin Forsett is a proven starter and will provide nice reps when MJD is not in the game. Rookie Denard Robinson will be key in the offense. Even though he is listed as running back, he will be all over the field doing what he does best, making plays as an "Offensive Weapon".

    WR: This group of receivers are young but talented and ready to make an impact this year. Cecil Shorts III is looking to improve upon his breakout season last year. Justin Blackmon has great hands and the knack to get YAC yards at will. Look for him to catch a lot of balls this year. Jordan Shipley and Ace Sanders will rotate at the slot. Shipley has great hands and route running ability. Sanders, like Robinson, is explosive and has the ability take the ball to the house everytime he touches it.

    TE: Marecedes Lewis offers constant stability with his blocking and receiving skills. Rookie Allen Reisner has nice receiving ability. He will complement Lewis nicely in dual TE sets. Isaiah Stanback is a WR turned TE. Look for him to make some plays when matched up against LBrs.

    O-Line: There no doubt that LT Eugene Monroe is the anchor of the offensive line. The question still lies at LG. Will Rackley has to play better for this line to be great. Brad Meester is back at center to provide leader and stability. Nwaneri is one of better run blocking RGs out there. First round pick Luke Joeckel is a vast upgrade at the RT position. Along with Monroe, Gabbert should have plenty of time in the pocket.

    D-Line: There a lot of new faces in different places in this new defense. Alualu has moved back to his natural position at DE. Roy Miller and Sen'Derrick Marks are disruptive DTs that are looking to stop the run and harrass the QB. Jason Babin provides explosive pass rush ability and veteran leadership.

    LBs: Paul Posluszny is back to terrorize the offense. Russell Allen will continue to enforce his presence on passing downs at the OLB position. Free agent Geno Hayes will start on the opposite side of Allen.

    Secondary: The secondary will be young and talented. Rookies Dwayne Gratz, Johnathan Cyprien and Josh Evans are guys to keep an eye on. Alan Ball brings experience to the nickle position and will most likely start there. Marcus Trufant will be the veteran presence and will start at LCB. Dwight Lowery returns to lineup for stability but could be pushed by the rookie Evans.

    Special Teams: Josh Scobee is very reliable and has a big leg. Bryan Anger will handle punting duties. Jordan Shipley will continue to do punt returns with Ace Sanders backing him up. Jordan Todman and Sanders will be the kick returners but don't be surprised to our OW lines up back there as well.
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2013
    • Like Like x 3
  9. Automatik

    Automatik Walk On

    Jun 4, 2012
    Arizona Cardinals

    The Cardinals ranked near the bottom of nearly every offensive category last season on their way to a 5-11 record. While there are pieces in place for Arizona to have more success this season, their biggest need is to keep Carson Palmer on his feet. If it wasn't for the strong play on the defensive side of the ball the Cards might have had the top pick in last year's draft.

    QB: Carson Palmer is a short term answer at QB until the Cardinals can find a capable replacement. Palmer is still a major upgrade at the position which hasn't been competent since 88 year old Kurt Warner left in 09.

    HB: Arizona signed 911 conspiracy theorist Rashard Mendenhall to a 1 year contract, so if Mendenhall can't produce early on Cards fans have not worry as 2011 2nd round pick Ryan Williams who ran for a whopping 2.8 yards per carry will be asked to take over. Rookies Andre Ellington and Stepfan Taylor will be asked to step in if both Mendenhall and Williams struggle to open the season.

    WR: Larry Fitzgerald is still a top 3 WR and will put numbers to prove that this year. Second year wideout Michael Floyd will look to continue to build upon his strong finish to the 2012 season. Andre Roberts was a surprise last year, Robert caught 64 passes for 759 yards and 5 TDs. With Palmer under center look for this unit to put bigger numbers than last year.

    TE: Rob Housler isn't a player that you hear much of, but this physical talent who has good speed might put numbers that will make coaches say Who the Hell is this guy?

    O-line: The Arizona Cardinals had possibly the worst offensive line in league history last season as they ranked dead last in yards per rush as well as sacks given up per pass attempt. There was only one other team in the past 30 years that ranked last in those two categories and that was the first-year expansion Houston Texans, whom basically commited assault in the second degree to David Carr. Arizona signed Tackle Eric Winston, but the veteran hasn't shown up yet(Don't see him on the Madden spreadsheet), to shore up a very bad offensive line.

    D-line: With Calais Campbell and Darnell Dockett holding the edge and 327 lbs DT Dan Williams clogging up the running lanes, the Cardinals have of the most underrated D-lines in the NFL.

    LBs: MLB Daryl Washington is one of the top young linebackers in the NFL, Karlos Dansby return to Arizona after three years in Miami and 2nd rounder Kevin Minter will provide solid depth at the Mike spot. On the outside Sam Acho will need to step up or Lorenzo Alexander who was signed in the offseason will take his spot.

    DBs: Corner Patrick Peterson is a stud, he will look to improve on his 7 INTs last year. The rest of the seconday is suspect at best with the loss of starting safeties Kerry Rhodes and Adrian Wilson. Antoine Cason will most likely start opposite Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu aka the Honey badger will replace Kerry Rhodes at FS.
    This is a Honey Badger for those who don't know... NSFW

    Special Teams: Jay Feely and Dave Zastudil form one of the best kicking tandems in the NFL, and with Peterson and Mathieu fielding kicks this unit is arguably the strongest in the NFL.

    Outlook: If the Cardinals' O-line can keep Palmer clean and open up some running lanes for the HBs this team could surprise some and contend for a wildcard spot. 9-7 prediction
    • Like Like x 2
  10. RRAHx2

    RRAHx2 Cleared for Takeoff

    Aug 22, 2012
    Looking good so far, great reviews guys!

    BE5T NAME EVER Walk On

    Jun 10, 2013

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers 2013

    The Buccaneers will be lead onto the field with Rookie Owner Trent Siddle. A true veteran leader will have his hands full during the 2013 season. Trying to improve on a disappointing 7-9 season will be tough to do in the NFC South. His coaching staff is up for the challenge and will try to bring back a winning tradition to the franchise. The Buccaneers franchise would like to wish good luck to all the owners in league and may your hard work pay off.

    QB- The Bucs will go as far as the Quarterbacks can carry them during the season. Pressure is on 5th yr signal caller, Josh Freeman, to show that he is worthy of carrying a NFL franchise. Freeman is entering his contract year and rookie signal caller Mike Glennon may push him out of Tampa Bay.

    HB- 2nd year workhorse, Doug Martin, will be a explosive force to stop. High
    expectations are expected after rushing for over 1,400 yards and 11 tds last season. Depth is a huge issue for the Bucs in this department. Rookie Mike James and Veteran Brian Leonard will battle for snaps behind Martin. The Bucs may be looking for a trade or FA to find a solid backup.

    WR- All Pro Wide Receiver, Vincent Jackson, leads the way for this year. The coaching staff loves his size and big player making ability. Mike Williams was named the #2 WR by the staff after signing him to an extension during the summer. The team doesn't have much behind the two outside starters. Kevin Ogletree should lock up the slot position unless the staff reaches out to other teams for help.

    TE- This is a big weakness for the Bucs with the loss of Dallas Clark in the
    off-season. FA addition Tom Crabtree with battle Luke Stocker for playing time. The new coaching staff loves using dual TE formations and they will be looking to adding talent via a trade early in the season.

    Oline- This should be a strength of the Bucs if they can stay healthy. All-Pro guards, Carl Nicks and Davin Joseph, lead the way with this unit. Donald Penn is a lock at left tackle position and Jeremy Zuttah should lock up the center spot in the offseason. Right tackle is a big concern for the new coaching staff. Demar Dotson and newly
    acquired Gabe Carimi will be the first ones to get a shot at starting.

    The new coaching staff has a huge decision to make in the next few days. They hired a 3-4 defensive coordinator but they don't have the personnel to run it. One thing they do know is that they have 2 studs in the front seven. Pro Bowl DT Gerald McCoy and 2nd year OLB Lavonte David have the ability to adapt to multiple schemes and won't be affected if there ends up being a major change. Rumor is that the new DC loves to put pressure on the QB. Depth will be needed to succeed in the division. Coaches are already looking to bring in some new faces to challenge the returning starters.

    The biggest strength of the Bucs has to be the electrifying secondary. The staff was acquiring the worst secondary in the league until changes in the off-season were made. New acquired CB Darrelle Revis and S Dashon Goldson will lead one of the best units in the league. They will pair up with hard hitting 2nd year S Mark Barron and the sensational rookie CB Johnthan Banks. Cornerback depth will be a big issue while trying to stop the high flying offenses in the NFC South. Hopefully the new coaching staff can build this unit up during the long season.


    Special Teams

    The special teams coaches could not be reached for comment. Looks like the Bucs will have a wide open competition in this area. Off-season work will determine who gets on the field for these key situations.

    2013 DRAFT PICKS
    2 11(43) J. Banks CB Mississippi State
    3 11(73) M. Glennon QB North Carolina State
    4 3(100) A. Spence DT Illinois
    4 29(126) W. Gholston DE Michigan State
    5 14(147) S. Means OLB Buffalo
    6 21(189) M. James RB Miami (FL)



    • Like Like x 3
  12. Cole Springer

    Cole Springer Walk On

    Jul 11, 2013
    Tennessee Titans

    Offence: This year the Tennessee Titans will be a run first team. Getting Andy Livitre in free agency and Chance Warmack in the draft and having two of the top Tackles in the game in David Stewart and Michael Roos, the Tennessee line has become one of the best in the league. This should satisfy Chris Johnson who has been begging for better line play for the past two years but will also put a lot of pressure on him to perform like the year he ran for over 2000 yards on the ground. Jake Locker will be the Titans starting quarterback this year for his second straight year. He is hoping to take some strides in his passing ability this year but with the option game becoming more popular he can hopefully do his damage on the ground and use some play action to get receiver more open so he won't have to fit it into really tight windows.

    Defense: The defense this year is looking to be pretty average. They d-line will be its strong suit with Jurrell Casey, Mike Martin, and Karl Klug plugging up the middle with Derrick Morgan and Kamerion Wimbley on the edge. The biggest concern of the defense is the linebacker position. There is a lacking of talent and depth in this group. There is one guy who could be a breakout player in 2nd year pro Zach Brown who has the athletic ability to cover the whole field, make tackles, and force fumbles but needs to work on his ability to read and diagnose the offences plays and also needs to work on his coverage.

    Prediction: 9-7 with a wild card playoff birth.
    • Like Like x 3
  13. priestmvp

    priestmvp FOOTBALL!!!!

    Mar 21, 2010

    The Chiefs are coming off the most dissapointing season in franchise history finishing 2012 with a 2-14 record. With that horrible season behind them however, a new regime has arrived in KC. This new regime led by HC Andy Reid has brought a winning attitude back to the beaten down franchise and most experts predict the Chiefs to bounce back quickly climbing their way out of the AFC West cellar. I tend to agree. With the new coaching staff in place, KC fans will also see many new faces with their Chiefs on gameday as the new regime was busy in the offseason attempting to add quality players to the roster.


    QB Alex Smith - The Chiefs brass traded draft picks to bring in an experience west coast QB from the 49ers to be their starter.
    QB Chase Daniels - The team spent big money to land a veteran backup QB in Daniels.
    G Geoff Schwartz - Brought over from Minnesota, Schwartz will likely start at LG for KC
    WR Donnie Avery - A WR with deep threat potential
    TE Anthony Fasano - Sure handed physical TE
    LB Akeem Jordan - LB from Philly familiar with Coach Reid will likely start opposite Derrick Johnson in the Chiefs 3-4
    DB Dunta Robinson - Speedy DB formerly of Atlanta known for his physical play with ability to play CB or FS

    CB Sean Smith - Coveted big physical cover corner chiefs look to pair opposite Brandon Flowers

    2013 DRAFT

    1st round - T Eric Fisher of Central Michigan. Talented mauler who will start day one for the Chiefs at RT
    3rd round - TE Travis Kelce, Cincinnati. With Moeaki health concerns Kelce brings security and another dimension to chiefs passing game
    3rd round - RB Knile Davis, Auburn. KC desperate for depth behind superstar Jamaal Charles grabs talented playmaker from the SEC
    4th round - ILB Nico Johnson, Alabama. ILB played at a high level in a 3-4 scheme in college for Saban. Will compete with Akeem Jordan for starting spot inside.
    5th round - DB Sander Commings, Georgia. Talented DB has played S and CB for the Bulldogs, Chiefs see him as CB and see him possibly playing the slot as a rookie.

    A talented group of rookies the Chiefs believe can contribute immediately.


    QB - Veteran Alex Smith should be the unquestioned starter of this group, backed up by veteran Chase Daniel. Another name to watch is UDFA Tyler Bray out of Tennessee. Bray at 6'6 232 pounds has all the physical skills you could ask for but needs to put it together mentally. If he does watch out Chiefs fans, Bray has the biggest arm of all Chiefs QBs and already has a great deep ball. The Chiefs feel they got a steal inking him as an UDFA and see him as having potential to one day be a starter.

    RB - "Charles in charge"...yes indeed. Jamaal Charles will get his touches in the run game and the pass game. Rookie Knile Davis will have to step up right away as he will be counted on to give the star RB a breather in games.

    FB - Anthony Sherman should be the plow leading the way for Charles but it's believed the Chiefs may also carry rookie Braden Wilson who they spent a late round pick on on the roster as his backup.

    WR - "Bowe knows football"...Dwayne Bowe will certainly once again be the focal point for defenders ina the Chiefs passing game. The Chiefs brought in FA Donnie Avery to give Bowe a vertical threat. Dexter Mccluster will also see plenty of action as it's believed the Chiefs really like him in the slot.

    TE - Veterans Moeaki and Fasano should provide solid steady play for QB Alex Smith barring injuries. They are joined however by 3rd round pick Travis Kelce. Kelce will be one to watch as season progresses. Kelce can stretch the field and get down the seam but is also a very physical player.

    OL - It was believed LT Branden Albert was on his way out of KC this past offseason. Fortunately for Alex Smith and Chiefs fans he stayed put and will anchor that spot once again, allowing #1 overall pick of the 2013 draft OT Eric Fisher to get his feet wet playing RT as a rookie. Hudson returns from his injury to man the C spot as Schwartz and Asamoah will fill the G spots.

    DL - Dontari Poe easily the most talented of the chiefs DL will man the Nose. He will most likely be flanked by vets TJ Jackson and Mike Devito when KC is in their traditional 3-4 look. Watch however for youngster DE Allen Bailey who is fighting for pt.

    LB - Derrick Johnson mans the middle. Most likely playing beside him inside will be veteran Akeem Jordan with rookie Nico Johnson on his heels fighting for pt as well. Outside two deadly pass rushers return in Tamba Hali and Justin Houston. Talented playmakers who can play with their hands in the dirt or standing up depending on what look the Chiefs choose to give opponents.

    DB - At CB Brandon Flowers leads the group and now looks forward to having another physical CB playing the opposite with the offseason acquisition of former Dolphin CB Sean Smith. The slot will either be manned by veteran Dunta Robinson or rookie Sander Commings. At S young star in the making Eric Berry returns from injury and will be relied on heavily in this defense. Kendrick Lewis returns as well with a chance to start once again at FS.

    Alot of question marks for KC entering the season and even more new faces. Things should start to take shape week one for the Chiefs as they will travel to Jacksonville to play the Jaguars. Chiefs fans are expecting a quick turnaround for their team and a playoff appearance. Time will tell. However I feel if the Chiefs can finish with a winning record this season they will have made huge strides and just continue to improve.

    images (12).jpg

    • Like Like x 3
  14. nicknick68

    nicknick68 Walk On

    Mar 15, 2013
    New York Giants: the giants look poised to make the super bowl leap again with great veterans and alot of young talent after a dismal finsih to the season last year


    QB - as always Eli aka Elite manning will be heading the giants passing game. last year had its ups and downs as manning passed for 3900 yards and 26 tds

    RB - "david wilson has been handed the nyg starting running back job as a rookie he showed flashes of being a game changer. he will be counted on to lead the giants to a potent rushing along with back up andre brown

    FB - hynoski has been a workhorse for the giants doing whatever he was asked to do but with a injury to im the giants are relying on bear pascoe to move over and take the duties of blocking for wilson

    WR - ". the giants look poised to be a very good receiving core with nicks and cruz in the slot they will look to reuben randle to forfill his potential and become a outside threat. back ups louis murphy and jernel jernigan will be relied on to make plays for eli manning and the giants offense this year

    TE - the tight end postion is always a favorite of elis and with the departure of bennett brandon myers coming over from the raiders will look to make a impact on the field.

    OL - the giants line looked shaky last year at times and they brought in justin pugh a 1st round pick to help out. returners david deiehl will beatty chris brewer and chris snee look to shore up the line.

    DL - . dline is always a strenth of the ny giants they brought in cullen jenkins and shaun rogers to shore up the middle. on the outsides having the dominating duo of tuck and pierre paul with kiwanuka and a tandem of young ends the giants line should be dominant for years

    LB - the linebacking crews for the giants is widely unkown filled with young players and castoffs from other teams but they look to make a name for themselves this year

    DB - the giants secondary is filled with talent but also alot of questions guys such as prince rolle and stevie brown look to make a impact this year while webster looks to come back from a dismal year
    • Like Like x 2
  15. GritzBlitz

    GritzBlitz Walk On

    Jun 23, 2013

    2013 New Orleans Saints

    Improving an abysmal defense will be priority numero uno this season for the Saints. Returning QB and captain Drew Brees will have to maintain its high octane offensive output to win some shoot outs, until the defense, with its new pieces, can solidify.


    QB – Drew Brees – needs to keep doing what he does. Passing for nearly 5000 yards per season and cutting down on the int's. He will be backed up by journeyman Luke McCown.

    RB – By Committee – The Saints have a stable of backs this year, Pierre Thomas, Mark Ingram and Darren Sproles. All 3 have their own unique talents and serve as a Swiss Army knife depending on the need in any given situation.

    WR – The Saints nearly had two 1,000-yard receivers a season ago, Marques Colston (1,154 yards, 10 TD), Lance Moore (1,041 yards, 6 TD). The addition of Kenny Stills via the draft, round out the receiving corp, and leaves a degree of uncertainty of weather or not this unit can match the production of last year's group.

    TE – “The” Jimmy Graham – The former Miami Hurricaine hoopster is back and healthy for his 3rd NFL season. Slowed by a nagging hand injury last year, he is healthy and ready to assert himself as the top TE in the NFL. Ben Watson acquired in the off season will step in should should anything (God forbid) happen to Mr. Graham.

    OL – This group while not directly responsible for Brees being bagged 26 times last year, MUST improve its run blocking to allow for more balance on offense.


    DL – The Saints will be switching from a 4-3 to a 3-4 this season. Dealing with the learning curve and moving some guys to new positions, could slow their reaction times in the early games. This unit will have to push the pocket and force QB's off of their spot.

    LB – Vilma and Lofton will anchor the inside positions of the new look D. The outside spots will be held by two former DE's Will Smith and Junior Galette, it will be interesting to see how quickly the latter can transition into their new places.

    DB – While Jabari Greer and Keenan Lewis are known as big hitters, Greer was consistently beaten in coverage last season and will have to improve this aspect of his game if the Saints are to compete in the NFC South this year.

    Roman Harper and Malcom Jenkins are back at the safeties, but rookie Kenny Vaccaro is catching up quickly and could possible unseat one of the vets for a starting role.

    ST – Darren Sproles is a home run threat anytime he gets the ball in space, and though there is an injury risk involved, he will be handling both kickoff and punt returning duties.

    2013 Prediction

    Difficult to say, new team in a new club, with new game settings. Optimistically, 6-10
    • Like Like x 3
  16. mmorgan184

    mmorgan184 Walk On

    Sep 15, 2011

    Cleveland Browns Madden 25 Team Preview
    QB: Brandon Weeden will return in his second year as the starter. This will probably be his last year as the starter as long as I am in control of the franchise or I am able to progress him really well the first season. Jason Campbell is a good backup and Brian Hoyer will probably get cut.

    RB: Trent Richardson will be the focal point of the offense. With the new running back controls this year along with improvements to the stiff arm and truck, TRich should be a dominant back and be able to carry the team as long as he is healthy. Dion Lewis and Brandon Jackson will be subbing in.

    FB: Owen Marecic and Brad Smelley are the fullbacks in the game, but in real life Chris Ogbannaya is the projected starter here. Hopefully after a roster update this gets fixed and I can put him at fullback and have an actual offensive threat at that position in the game.

    TE: Jordan Cameron looks poised to break out this year and he can easily do so in the game too. He has all the physical attributes necessary to dominant in a game like Madden but will just need some improvement in his receiving and blocking attributes to become "the man" at Tight End.

    WR: Josh Gordon, Greg Little, Travis Benjamin, and Davone Bess should give me the best wide-receiving corps I have had with the Browns in all the years I have been playing Madden. I really hope to throw up a lot of points with these guys making a lot of big plays.

    Offensive Line: The Browns might have one of the best young offensive lines in the game. LT Joe Thomas and C Alex Mack have already been to a pro bowl and received much praise, second year RT Mitchell Schwartz has the ability to join them among being nationally recognized linemen. The Browns are comparatively weak at each Guard spot but have formidable starters there as of right now. This will be a spot we can address in future drafts.

    Defensive Line: Our d-line is talented and deep. Athyba Rubin, Phil Taylor, and Desmond Bryant should cause a lot of problems for opposing teams running backs and quarterbacks. We also have an incredible amount of depth here and should have these guys locked up for the length of this CFM.

    Linebacker: Another position where we have some incredible talent and depth. Jabaal Sheard, Paul Kruger, D'Qwell Jackson, Barkevious Mingo, and Craig Robertson will see most of the playing time in this group in the Browns new 3-4 look this season. With some seasoning and some stick skills Mingo can become a wrecking force on the defensive side of the ball with his physical abilities. Really excited about this group this year.

    Secondary: CB Joe Haden and SS TJ Ward lead this group. Both players have the ability to be at the All Pro level and will help cover for the complete dearth of talent at FS and other CB spots. Buster Skrine and Chris Owens will compete to play opposite of Haden, and rookie CB Leon McFadden will probably be the slot man.

    Special Teams: The Browns got rid of Phil Dawson. :( Our punter and kicker should be fine. Travis Benjamin will be a game changer as a returner.
    • Like Like x 2
  17. LeGeNd RiPs

    LeGeNd RiPs Is it football season yet?

    Nov 21, 2009

    2013-2014 Baltimore Ravens Team Preview
    QB: Joe "The Cannon" Flacco will get the nod at QB for the Ravens this season. the defending champs have had a great offseason and are poised for another playoff run. Tyrod Taylor will be the backup and new head coach, Cody Erwin has said great things about the young QB.
    HB: Ray "Beans and" Rice is returning after an amazing season and is looking for another 1500 yard plus season. Bernard Pierce will provide valuable minutes off of the bench, but there are rumors that coach Erwin will be looking to trade for another 3rd Down back.
    WR: Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones will be an excellent receiving corps this season. Look for these guys to be making a lot of plays for the Ravens this season.
    TE: Dennis Pitta will be a huge target for Flacco this season. Look for Pitta to have plenty of catches in this new offense that coach Erwin is implementing.
    OL: This Veteren O Line looks great with the exception of the center position. These guys know what blocking is all about.

    Defense: This defense lost two future hall of famers this offseason in Ed Reed and Ray Lewis. It was definitely a huge blow, but these guys have worked extremely hard this offseason and, Led by pro bowler Terrell Suggs, they look to prove all the nay-sayers wrong.

    Special Teams: Justin Tucker and Sam Koch are one of the best tandems in the league and with speedy Deonte Thompson handling the kick return duties, look for these guys to make some huge plays this season.

    Season Outlook: Look for the defending champs to sneak in under the radar this season with a new head coach and grab a wild card spot. 10-6.
    • Like Like x 1
  18. AwaLL

    AwaLL Walk On

    Oct 16, 2012
    Miami Dolphins

    The Miami Dolphins come into the season looking to improve upon their 7-9 record from last year. Coach AwaLL has high hopes for this young team. Miami made some big moves in FA going and getting Mike Wallace at WR and Danelle Ellerbe and Phillip Wheeler at LB.

    QB: Ryan Tannehill looks to improve in his 2nd year. He has been given the keys to the offense, as he goes, the Dolphins will go.

    RB: The Dolphins didnt hit FA to try and find a replacement for the loss of Reggie Bush. They have a trio of RBs in Lamar Miller, Daniel Thomas, and rookie Mike Gillislee. They should all see plenty of carries this season, and each have a unique skill set.

    WR: The Dolphins hit FA in a big way to land playmaker WR Mike Wallace. They now have a deep threat for Ryan Tannehill to stretch the field with, which also allows Brian Hartline to slide into the #2 position. Dont forget about new slot WR Brandon Gibson, who they think is going to be a better fit in the slot over recently traded Davone Bess.

    TE: Dolphins went and got TE Dustin Keller in FA this offseason. They feel if he can stay healthy, he may just be their biggest weapon, keeping Mike Wallace from being doubled.

    O-Line: The biggest question mark by far on the Dolphins roster. With the departure of Jake Long, Miami has handed Jonathan Martin the starting LT job. They also brought in RT Tyson Clabo and drafted G Dallas Thomas to try and help improve the Miami oline.

    DE: Maybe the biggest move of the draft was the Dolphins trading from the #12 spot in the 1st round all the way up to #3 to land Oregon DE Dion Jordan. The plan is to pair him with Cameron Wake to create the best pass rushing duo in the NFL.

    DT: Veterans Randy Starks and Paul Soliai will anchor the inside of Miami's 4-3 defensive front. They also brought in Vaughn Martin from San Diego for depth. Jared Odrick will also see snaps on the inside this season.

    LB: Danelle Ellerbe was brought in during the offseason to bring speed and toughness to the middle of Miami's LB core. A lot of people in the organization think Phillip Wheeler may be the bigger signing with his ability to shed blocks and stuff the run.

    Secondary: Reshad Jones leads a young but talented Miami secondary. Brent Grimes will step in as the #1 CB. The Dolphins drafted rookies Jamar Taylor and Will Davis who have impressed in camp and look to be in line for the #2 and #3 CB positions.

    ST: Miami drafted K Caleb Sturgis to compete with K Dan Carpenter for the job after Carpenter had a shaky 2012 season. Dolphins are giving Lamar Miller, Mike Gillisle and Nolan Carroll all looks for the starting KR/PR jobs.
    • Like Like x 1
  19. Coachmedicis

    Coachmedicis Walk On

    Feb 21, 2013
    The Bills come into 2013 season with high hopes. It has been way too long since their last playoff appearance and that ridiculously missed forward lateral that Frank Wycheck threw. This year, the bills cleaned house and have finally had a good draft of lots of play makes. Lets hope the old ways of playoff choking doesn't following me to the AFC.


    QB - EJ Manuel will take this team over from Week 1. If his accuracy can hold up, he could be a real threat for the league.

    RB - CJ Spiller will have to be the workhorse for this team. Like Doug Marrone said, we are going to give CJ the ball until he throws up.

    WR - Bills return Stevie Johnson as their #1 receiver. Expect rookies, Robert Woods, Marquise Goodwin and Da'Rick Rogers to all contribute this year.

    TE - A huge question mark for this team right now.

    OL - A mix of some youth as well as veterans, this could be a bright spot or could turn out to be a weakness against the solid pass rushes off AwaLL oneshot24 , i'll even say Chief9 's rush.

    DL - . If Super Mario can play like the Super Mario of the end of 2012, expect this line to put up constant pressure. DE pressure was the strength of the Madden 12 Saints, and I would expect the same from this team.

    LB - Rookie Kiko Alonso will take over the linebacker crew. If he is able to handle this, expect the bills defense to be tough.

    DB - Finally, the bills signed Jarius Byrd, which will make a huge difference this year. He will be signed to a long term deal. Gilmore presents 1 shut down corner, but the Bills will be looking at CB's next offseason.

    Expectations - Mark my words, the AFC East is the toughest division in all of RS. All 4 owners have a shot to make playoffs. Unfortunately I think we are going to be each other up too much to send 3 teams to playoffs. Here are my picks:

    AFC East - Miami Dolphins - would love to pick myself but I respect his game and see that he has been the team to beat in the AFC last couple years.
    AFC South - Cincy - Snake Eyez plays a solid game
    AFC North - Texans - Couple of rookies in this division, but the texans are stacked.
    AFC West - Broncos - GDip is a defensive genius, and inherits a top notch offense. Will be tough to stop.

    AFC WC - Bills - Hopefully we don't choke again.
    AFC WC - Pitt - nellycuz plays a good game and has a solid team.

    NFC East - Washington Redskins - The Rulah is the champ until someone knocks him off.
    NFC South - Carolina - Elemnt is a solid owner and could be trouble for the teams in this division.
    NFC North - Detroit - Anthrax78 Too many weapons on offense.
    NFC West - 49ers - Crowe Takes over the best Defense in the league. Will be tough to beat.

    NFC WC - Seattle - SFRANGER6969 took over a week Chiefs team at end of last season of RS and made a huge improvement. I expect the same this year.
    NFC WC - This one is a tough one. I'm expecting this to go to either nicknick68 or RRAHx2 .

    AFC Champ - GDip and the Denver Broncos
    NFC Champ - The Rulah - Like I said, he's the champ until someone knocks him off.

    Super Bowl Champ - Is there any suprise? The Rulah
    • Like Like x 4
  20. jay2149

    jay2149 Walk On

    Aug 17, 2012
    The New South

    With the new cycle about to start Veteran Owner Jay2149 Still with the Atlanta Falcons in the Nfc South Division with departing Chief9 and Coachmedicis and PantherKing1983 gone from the divison its time to show them that the Falcons can make it thru the grueling 16 game regular season with the new regime of owners coming in and the new different styles of play its going to be a nice and hard season to come....

    It's Super Bowl or bust for the Falcons and they had that same mentality a year ago as the No. 1 seed in the NFC with a 13-3 record and homefield advantage throughout the playoffs. However, Atlanta blew a 17-0 lead in the conference championship versus the San Francisco 49ers and a last-gasp effort fell short inside the red zone.

    Head coach Mike Smith and quarterback Matt Ryan got their first playoff wins together and the Falcons have compiled 36 wins over the past three seasons. Ryan has helped the Falcons become a perennial favorite to win the NFC South, something the franchise has accomplished twice in the last three years. The one more commonly known as "Matty Ice" was entering a contract season and the Falcons took care of their prized QB with a five-year extension in July.

    Ryan's deal is reportedly worth $103.75 million, with the Boston College product receiving $59 million guaranteed and scheduled to make $63 million over the first three years of the deal. A two-time Pro Bowl selection, Ryan is coming off his best statistical season, notching career bests in touchdowns (32), passing yards (4,719) and completion percentage (68.6) in 2012.

    "My goal, and my mindset has been the same since 2008," Ryan said. "It's about winning a championship. And it's about getting rings. I'm just happy I'm gonna have the opportunity to do that here."

    The future is bright for Ryan and the Falcons as they prepare for another season with the usual suspects, especially on offense. Roddy White and Julio Jones are arguably the best wide receiver tandem in the league and veteran tight end Tony Gonzalez is back for what is expected to be his last season. Gonzalez knows what's at stake with Atlanta and wanted to be a part of something special.

    Gonzalez took to Twitter to voice his pleasure: "The lure of being on such a great team and organization, along with unbelievable fan support was too good to pass up."

    With running back and touchdown machine Michael Turner no longer with the Falcons, the team needed to bolster that area and added veteran Steven Jackson in the offseason. Jackson cemented his legacy with the St. Louis Rams and is hoping to ignite Atlanta's stagnant ground attack, which was 29th in rushing yards a year ago with 87.3 ypg. Much like Gonzalez, Jackson is no spring chicken and knows his time is coming up. He has been used in all facets during the preseason and will give defenses trouble in the passing game.

    "It reminds me of my younger years when I was used more as a receiver out of the backfield," said Jackson, who is tremendous upgrade from Turner. "It allows me to use more tools in the shed that I have and possess. It allows me to work on things I haven't done in a number of years."

    The defense did some tinkering, too, and no longer has key contributors in defensive end John Abraham and defensive backs Brent Grimes, Chris Hope and Dunta Robinson. So the Falcons brought in seasoned vet Osi Umenyiora to fill Abraham's spot and drafted cornerbacks Desmond Trufant and Robert Alford. Atlanta added a few more defenders in the draft and needed reinforcements for how shaky Mike Nolan's unit played in 2012, finishing 21st in rushing yards allowed (123.2), 23rd in pass defense (242.4) and 24th in yards allowed (365.6). The Falcons, though, were fifth in points allowed (18.7) and fifth with 20 interceptions.

    Atlanta was also 28th in sacks last season with 29.0 and is hoping the addition of Umenyiora will bolster that area. Umenyiora was certainly happy to join the reigning NFC South champions.

    "This team is the most talented team I've seen in my life, probably," Umenyiora said. "But it's not going to be about coaching. It's going to be about what the players are able to do, and you need that veteran leadership. You need guys who have been in those games and can tell you about exactly what happened."

    2012 RECORD: 13-3 (1st, NFC South)

    LAST PLAYOFF APPEARANCE: 2012 (lost to San Francisco in NFC Championship Game)

    HEAD COACH (RECORD): Mike Smith (56-24, sixth season)

    OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR: Dirk Koetter (second season)

    DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR: Mike Nolan (second season)

    KEY ADDITIONS: RB Steven Jackson (from Rams), DE Osi Umenyiora (from Giants), CB Desmond Trufant (draft), CB Robert Alford (draft), DE Malliciah Goodman (draft)

    KEY DEPARTURES: DE John Abraham (released), RB Michael Turner (released), CB Brent Grimes, S Chris Hope, CB Dunta Robinson (released), QB Luke McCown, C Todd McClure

    QB: With a new contract in tow, Ryan won't have to worry about financial stability and can focus on getting the Falcons over the hump. Ryan (4,719 yards, 32 TD, 14 INT) took every snap last season and rightfully so. His 68.6 completion percentage was a career high and so were his 141 rushing yards. Don't expect Koetter to have many plays where Ryan scrambles out of the backfield, but fans should anticipate Jackson opening up the passing game some more. Ryan already has an outstanding supporting cast and there's no reason why the Falcons shouldn't compete for a Super Bowl title this season. The New Orleans Saints could pose as a major threat now that head coach Sean Payton is back after his league mandated one-year suspension. Also, Cam Newton and the Carolina Panthers appear to be on the rise. But for now, the NFC South belongs to Ryan and the Falcons. If they can get the ground attack going, the passing game could be even more dangerous.

    Backup duties are in the hands of East Carolina product Dominique Davis, obviously a sharp dropoff from Ryan.

    GRADE: A

    RB: Turner will no longer be wearing an Atlanta uniform and the team will miss the pounding effect he had on defenses. Turner, though, came up small in the playoffs after racking up 10 rushing scores in the regular season. Hoping to cure those woes is Jackson. Jackson (1,042 yards, 4 TD) has eclipsed the 1,000-yard rushing mark in each of his last eight seasons, but hasn't rushed for more than six TDs over the past four. Perhaps a new city and scheme can revive the veteran's legs as well as his pass-catching ability. A life span for an NFL running back isn't long and Jackson has defied the odds.

    With Jackson now incorporated in the offense, Koetter has so many options to go with, including backup running back Jacquizz Rodgers, who is entering his third season. Rodgers (362 yards, TD) is a shifty back with speed and quickness and is also used out of the backfield. A mismatch for most defenders, Rodgers should see an increased role in 2013.

    GRADE: B

    WR: How can an offense go wrong with White and Jones? White (1,351 yards, 7 TD) has been a picture of durability in his career, having not missed a game in 128 chances. White has racked up 1,000 or more yards in each of the past six seasons and has caught seven or more TD passes in five straight seasons. He caught 92 passes in 2012, his lowest total since 85 in 2009. White, though, sustained an ankle injury in the preseason, but should be ready to go in Week 1.

    Jones (1,198 yards, 10 TD) is a perfect compliment to White and has a slight edge talent-wise between the two. Jones is one of the fastest receivers in the game and was worth moving up the draft board to get. The Falcons did receive a scare with Jones in training camp and the wideout has been dealing with tightness in his hamstrings. Had the injury occurred in the regular season, Jones may have missed a game or two. For now the Falcons will err on the side of caution and gradually get Jones ready for the season opener. Not known for falling victim to injuries, a healthy Jones is what the Falcons need to achieve success.

    Harry Douglas (396 yards, TD), Jackson and Rodgers will be at Ryan's passing disposal as well.

    GRADE: A-

    TE: Gonzalez had to be lured from the idea of retirement in the offseason. He came back because he knew the potential of this offense and that the Falcons are all about winning. Gonzalez (930 yards, 8 TD) can still produce in the twilight of his career thanks to a strict workout regimen and will once again be one of Ryan's top targets. Gonzalez had a team-high 93 receptions in 2012, one more than White, and the longtime Kansas City Chief has accumulated at least six TD catches in each of the previous five seasons. The chiseled Gonzalez, who is back for a 17th NFL season and a 13-time Pro Bowler, missed part of training camp to deal with family commitments and has the confidence in Koetter, who said there is no concern on Gonzalez's conditioning for missing time. Gonzalez is slated to play on Aug. 24 at Tennessee and holds NFL records at his position for receptions (1,242), receiving yards (14,268), and touchdown catches (103).

    Levine Toilolo was drafted in April and has a great mind to pick in Gonzalez.

    GRADE: B+

    OL: Now that the Falcons have invested a boat load of cash in Ryan, the offensive line has an even bigger task in protecting the face of the franchise.

    Ryan was sacked a career high 28 times last season and has been sacked at least 23 times in each of the past three years. For how many times Ryan was put on his back, he managed to have a career year. Right tackle Tyson Clabo was released and Lamar Holmes is expected to take over. Holmes was drafted in the third round last year and the Falcons did not select an offensive lineman in April.

    Young lineman Peter Konz will move from right guard to center after veteran Todd McClure retired, while Justin Blalock and Garrett Reynolds will start at left and right guard, respectively. Sam Baker is penciled in at left tackle. There are still positions to be won across the line and the Falcons hope they can sort through the uncertainty during training camp.

    Losing tackle Mike Johnson to a season-ending ankle injury doesn't help and he was supposed to compete for a starting job. Undrafted rookie Ryan Schraeder is expected to compete at right tackle and hopes to impress offensive line coach Pat Hill.

    "We're getting better working together as a group, but we keep shifting guys in and out moving guys to different positions," Hill said. "I think that's going to help us down the road."

    GRADE: C

    DL: The Falcons lost sack master Abraham this offseason due to financial issues and hope the addition of Umenyiora will soften the blow. Abraham is getting up in age, but yet again so is Umenyiora (42 tackles, 6 sacks). Umenyiora's sack total was down last season and he had nine in 2011 and 12 the year before. He said this is the most talented team he's ever been on and even won two Super Bowls with the New York Giants.

    Atlanta struggled to stop opposing ground attacks and was 21st in rushing yards allowed (123.2) and 24th in total yards allowed (365.6). Starting left DE Kroy Biermann (52 tackles, 4 sacks) was second behind Abraham's 10 sacks and has an increased role in 2013.

    Malliciah Goodman and Stansly Maponga were drafted in April to battle at the end spots, while Jonathan Babineaux (31 tackles, 3 1/2 sacks) will hold down his left defensive tackle spot. Babineaux is Atlanta's best interior lineman and must produce at that spot. Collapsing the pocket and applying pressure up front is what Atlanta needs to keep its defense off the field.

    Peria Jerry (14 tackles) and Corey Peters (15 tackles) are the Falcons' options at right defensive tackle. As previously stated, the front line of this unit must produce and will struggle at times against division foes Tampa Bay, Carolina and New Orleans.

    GRADE: C

    LB: With a few standouts gone in the secondary, the Falcons' linebacking core is arguably the best on defense. The Falcons struggled in coverage in the playoffs and second-leading tackler Sean Weatherspoon (96 tackles, 3 sacks) suffered a dislocated finger on his left hand during training camp. That shouldn't bother Atlanta's signal caller on defense and he has proven his toughness and grit already. Weatherspoon drilled Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III last season and gave him a concussion. The hard-hitting Weatherspoon is Nolan's most athletic player on that side of the football and it wouldn't be a surprise if the defensive coordinator calls his number on blitz packages more often this season.

    Stephen Nicholas (97 tackles, 2 sacks) will start opposite of Weatherspoon on the left side, while Akeem Dent (64 tackles) is slated to run the middle. The main area of concern for Atlanta's linebackers is depth. And that will be a problem in the NFC South.

    GRADE: C+

    DB: The Falcons were awful in pass defense last season, finishing 23rd in the league (242.4). It could get worse with Brent Grimes and Dunta Robinson out of the mix and possible rookies in Desmond Trufant or Robert Alford earning a starting job. Trufant will probably win the job, but Alford pushing veteran defensive back Asante Samuel (36 tackles, 5 INT) isn't likely.

    Samuel, though, will need help from safeties Thomas DeCoud and William Moore now that a youth movement is forming in the secondary. DeCoud (76 tackles, 6 INT) led the Falcons in interceptions last season and was re-signed last March. Moore (75 tackles, 4 INT) inked a new five-year deal this past season and earned his first career Pro Bowl selection in 2012. Moore is expected to have an even bigger season under Nolan, who introduced the defense to a new scheme.

    "Last year, I won't say we were freelancing, but last year at times we were doing things and we knew where we were going, but we didn't know why we were doing it," Moore said. "But now, we totally understand the disguise and the total package as far as moving around. That comes with another year under our belt on this defense. You've got to remember that was only one year under that defense."

    GRADE: B-

    SPECIAL TEAMS: The always-reliable Matt Bryant will handle kicking duties and made 33 of his 38 attempts last season. Bryant, who nailed a 49-yard game- winning field goal with 13 seconds remaining in the NFC Divisional Playoff game versus Seattle, was 4-for-4 from 50-plus yards out and made all 44 of his PAT attempts, but will not be kicking off.

    That job belongs to punter Matt Bosher, who averaged 47.1 yards per punt on 60 tries last season.

    Rodgers returned 23 kicks for 592 yards (25.7) and has the job again. Defensive back Dominique Franks had 21 punt returns for 163 yards (7.8). Both return men will be relied on to get Ryan and the offense in key field position, but Ryan has proven that no matter where the offense starts he's not concerned. Bosher will hold and Josh Harris is slated to be the long snapper.

    GRADE: C+

    COACHING: The Falcons have a unique and talented trio of coaches in Smith, Koetter and Nolan. Koetter is in charge of the offense and his job couldn't get any better with what he has to work with. Besides a lowly run game from a year ago, Ryan and the aerial attack is arguably the best in the NFC, and that includes Green Bay, Washington and San Francisco. Perhaps the addition of Jackson is what the Falcons need to be more balanced. He'll also be used out of the backfield, too.

    "Well, this team was pretty dynamic when it came to throwing screens, taking advantage of the defense being overly aggressive. We have a number of playmakers on this team, wherever I can fit in on the package, whether it's being a decoy or catching the screen making something happen down the field. I just have to learn every position."

    Nolan's defense got by thanks to a high-powered offense and needs tinkering in a few areas. The secondary and pass rush are a major concern and could hinder Atlanta from going deep into the playoffs. Pat Hill has a tough job adjusting to some new faces across the offensive line and Terry Robiskie has the easiest as wide receivers coach. Defensive backs coach Tim Lewis and defensive line coach Ray Hamilton don't have it so easy, however.

    GRADE: B-

    THE SKINNY: Whether the Falcons return to the NFC Championship Game relies solely on their defense. The offensive line underwent some changes, but that shouldn't stop Ryan from connecting with his dream duo at wide receiver and future Hall of Famer Gonzalez. The addition of Jackson in the backfield can only make the Falcons better and they must take advantage in the next few seasons because the running back is on the decline. It won't be easy capturing another NFC South title with other members of the division on the rise

    Thanks for Reading......[​IMG]
    • Like Like x 1
  21. Coachmedicis

    Coachmedicis Walk On

    Feb 21, 2013
    damn - did you write all that jay2149 or did you copy and paste it.
    • Like Like x 2
  22. RRAHx2

    RRAHx2 Cleared for Takeoff

    Aug 22, 2012
    18 teams done, 14 to go!
  23. jay2149

    jay2149 Walk On

    Aug 17, 2012
    i was up till 3 couldnt sleep some copy and paste and some write up
  24. Coachmedicis

    Coachmedicis Walk On

    Feb 21, 2013
    hahahaha - its all about RS
  25. jay2149

    jay2149 Walk On

    Aug 17, 2012
    you know it i havent been in a madden league that i feel more comfortable then i have been here RRAHx2 i really enjoy you guys here and i love researching content:doodie::cry::ROFLMAO::couchpotato::stinkyfeet:(y)(n):mad:
    • Like Like x 2

Share This Page