Leisure Suit Lou’s 2011 NFL Preview:
With the preseason finally over, the 2011 season is primed to start. By this point of the year, I know everybody has gone through the schedule and figured out the Steelers are going 15-1 or 16-0. True, no doubt. But what about the rest of the AFC North? Will anybody be able to compete with the Black and Gold? What about the rest of the league? Any surprise teams? Will Tom Brady finally get a haircut and stop modeling his “Ugz” boots? Will Carson Palmer get traded to an NFC team, or a Lingerie Football League team? (you never know…) There are so many questions to answer, so little time before opening kickoff.
First, let’s look at the AFC North:
1. Pittsburgh (projected 12-4) This Division is theirs to win. The D might be a little older, but still the most dominant in the league, but the offense is what is really explosive this season. Too many weapons for teams to try and stop. Another Division title and playoff berth awaits Ben and company.
2. Baltimore (10-6) Just like Pittsburgh, their D is getting older, only they don’t have the young studs to back up an aging Ray Ray and Reed. They’ll win the games they are supposed to, but will never win any big ones with Flacco as their QB.
3. Cleveland (6-10) They have a decent young team, and Colt McCoy might has shown he has the potential to be an NFL QB, but they’re still a few years away from really competing. Peyton Hillis has to deal with trying to survive having a brutal running style, facing two physical defenses twice each, as well as the Madden curse. He might not be healthy enough to make it through the season.
4. Cincinnati (3-13) Yes, the good ole’ Bengals are back, thanks to Mike Brown. Rumor has it Carson Palmer was in town for “talks,” but odds are he’ll never play in Cincy again. Andy Dalton might be a decent QB, but throwing him in to the Steeler and Ravens’ defenses just doesn’t seem fair. Gonna be another long season in Cincy.
So that’s part one of the NFL puzzle. The Steelers win the Division with the Ravens earning a wild card spot.
As for the rest of the AFC:
AFC EAST – Patriots. I know, I can’t stand them either, but I don’t think Sanchez has enough to overtake them.
AFC SOUTH – Texans. Yes, they finally break through and win the division. If Peyton Manning misses any time at all, the Colts are done. At least if Arian Foster misses time, the Texans still have their starting QB.
AFC WEST – Chargers. I keep hearing how Phillip Rivers is an ‘elite’ QB. Well, to me he’s just ‘good’ and over hyped until he starts winning in the post season.
AFC Wildcards: Ravens and Colts.
In the end, I think the Pats will make a trip into Heinz Field for the AFC Championship game. Only this time, they won’t have any of their ‘infamous Belicheck game film’ like that had before. (Spygate anybody?) No cheating, no winning for Brady and company.
Steelers 27 – Pats 13
As for the NFC:
Really? Does anybody really care who wins the NFC Divisions? The only thing the NFC teams are really good for is filling out my Fantasy Football roster with guys that play the 4:00 Eastern game. Let’s just go through and say the Falcons will win the NFC and head to the Super Bowl.
Super Bowl XLVI in Indianapolis:
Steelers 34 – Falcons 17
MVP – Ben Roethlisberger. Ben finally has a huge day, and there’s no way he isn’t walking away with the trophy this time.
Take it to the bank. Better yet, take it to Vegas. Mark it down now ‘cause Leisure Suit Lou says so.
Steelers get #7….FUHGETTABOUTIT!