WALK OF SHAME: Me vs. my 2010 NFL Predictions

Posted: August 30, 2011 by The Cheap Seat Fan in NFL
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Preview issues of magazines, newspapers and websites are always a special breed of funny. Well, later on that is, because at the time, they are both justifiers to the fan’s claim of this being “our year”, while doubling as doomsday declarations for some lowly teams. They are builders of gurus, professors, and genius’, shaman and fortune tellers for those that get February right in August.

However, it’s a two way path…bound by the rules of one way street.

Get it right, you’re a star. Miss the mark, the fool on the hill will get to make room for you. Those same leaps of faith taken on a team that showed promise the year before (what up Bengals, 49ers and Vikings), can come back around and take you down in a slow burning, 16-week flame up of embarrassment along with them. My shot last season at NFL prediction superstardom missed the mark badly. Division champions: one. Playoff teams: six of 16. However, here’s where it gets really fun: Top 10 draft squads PLACED IN playoffs: three. Let’s just say there’s some rebounding to be done in this week’s swing in the dark at projection immortality.

However, before I take that next prideful leap of faith starting tomorrow, I will shamelessly look back at this time last year (I’ve got Sunday Ticket this year to watch each of my fates unfold in front of my eyes this time. Joy.). When as far as I knew (or anyone else for that matter) I had the script to how the next seventeen weeks of the NFL would go exactly. Check back in tomorrow to see the reboot of this effort in the 2010 CSP NFL division-by-division preview, starting out in the NFC East.

 

NFC EAST

Prediction                                           But for real…

1. Cowboys (12-4)                        1. Eagles (10-6)

2. Giants (11-5)                              2. Giants (10-6)

3. Eagles (8-8)                               3. Cowboys (6-10)

4. Redskins (7-9)                         4. Redskins (6-10)

Vick took a lead role in turning my outlook for the East on it's head. The Cowboys provided plenty of supporting actors though.

The Tony Romo injury didn’t help here, but the Cowboys played like they’d never met each other before long before he went down. The re-emergence of the Eagles went hand in hand with Michael Vick blowing up on the scene, and playing like his video game self in real life (ask the Redskins). This division is always tough, and up for grabs, but the Cowboys clearly proved to be among the most paper of champions.

 

NFC NORTH

Prediction                                           But for real…

1. Vikings (13-3)                           1. Bears (11-5)

2. Packers (11-5)                           2. Packers (10-6)

3. Bears (6-10)                               3. Lions (6-10)

4. Lions (3-13)                               4. Vikings (6-10)

Favre won't be around to provide anymore false confidence this year...right?

I really, really underestimated how shell-shocked Brett Favre was after the Saints took turns on him in the NFC Championship the year before. He played his last year like his soul never found his body again. 99% of the Vikes 2010 offering (it’s never Adrian Peterson’s fault) looked like it never got over the last loss of the 2009 season. The Bears and Packers jumped at the opportunity. The Bears turned into the most surprising division winner in the NFC and the Packers ended up right about where I though (minus the Super Bowl run and all, but more on that in a moment…)

 

NFC SOUTH

Prediction                                           But for real…

1. Saints (13-3)                               1. Falcons (13-3)

2. Falcons (8-8)                            2. Saints ()

3. Panthers (6-10)                       3. Buccaneers (10-6)

4. Buccaneers (2-14)                 4. Panthers (2-14)

I'm not the only one that didn't see the Bucs coming. I take no fault here at all.

About that Super Bowl prediction…yeah, that was here instead. The Saints played well, but the Falcons made this division their own. The Buccaneers surprised everyone with how well they played. However, everyone didn’t go on the record as having them stay 2-14. That’s what happens when an entire team plays about 5 years older than they were on paper. I won’t be making that mistake again.

 

NFC WEST

Prediction                                           But for real…

1. 49ers (10-6)                                1. Seahawks (7-9)

2. Cardinals (8-8)                        2. Rams (7-9)

3. Seahawks (5-11)                       3. 49ers (6-10)

4. Rams (2-14)                                4. Cardinals (6-10)

This sums up perfectly how I feel about the NFC West last year.

Who could’ve called this? The Seahawks and Rams had been perennial screw ups and the Cardinals lost Kurt Warner. The Niners had talented default victor written all over them. That was before Sam Bradford did a remarkable Peyton Manning, year one, impression and the Niners played “Duck, Duck, Goose” with subpar QB’s all year. In the end, the division put the first sub-.500 club in the playoffs…which went on to beat the defending champs. Once again, nobody could’ve scripted this. And I apologized for this all before.

 

AFC EAST

Prediction                                           But for real…

1. Jets (13-3)                                    1. Patriots (14-2)

2. Patriots (11-5)                           2. Jets (11-5)

3. Dolphins (7-9)                         3. Dolphins (7-9)

4. Bills (3-13)                                  4. Bills (4-12)

Right record, wrong team. I'll take it though.

The Jets and Pats running the division happened as even a blind guy could see coming. I even got the record for the second place team right, even if the team wasn’t. After some of the miscues that are about to be coming up from rest of the AFC in this recap, I’m considering this a victory.

 

AFC NORTH

Prediction                                           But for real…

1. Bengals (11-5)                            1. Steelers (12-4)

2. Ravens (11-5)                            2. Ravens (12-4)

3. Steelers (9-7)                           3. Browns (5-11)

4. Browns (3-13)                          4. Bengals (4-12)

What in the hell was I thinking....

I learned a few valuable lessons here last year. #1) Never put faith in a combo of grown men that call themselves “Batman & Robin”. #2) Carson Palmer is not a winner. #3) The Bengals will always find a way to stay close to their true selves, the Bungles. Think I’m salty about my major whiff on the AFC’s Super Bowl rep? Whatever could’ve given you that idea…? (I also learned that Troy Polamalu is the difference between the “Super Steelers” and whatever they were in ’09, but it was more fun to get in my feelings over the Bengals here).

 

AFC SOUTH

Prediction                                           But for real…

1. Colts (12-4)                                 1. Colts (10-6)

2. Texans (9-7)                            2. Jaguars (8-8)

3. Titans (8-8)                              3. Texans (6-10)

4. Jaguars (6-10)                         4. Titans (6-10)

Old reliable Manning delivered on his usual promise, and helped me save a bit of face.

Finally, a division champ I got right. Even though they have won it every year since what feels like 1925 now. The rest of this division just kind of survived through the season, and was rather unremarkable after the Texans proved they have no interest in fulfilling their potential and the Jaguars woke up way too late to catch the Colts off balance.

 

AFC WEST

Prediction                                           But for real…

1. Chargers (11-5)                         1. Chiefs (10-6)

2. Raiders (7-9)                             2. Chargers (9-7)

3. Broncos (7-9)                           3. Raiders (8-8)

4. Chiefs (4-12)                              4. Broncos (4-12)

When the Raiders go undefeated in any category, it's guaranteed to mess up any logic deployed.

It was backwards year nearly in the West. The Chargers were the safest pick in the lot and had no chance of the Chiefs taking them down, right. This really happened, and along the way, somehow the Raiders (!!!) went undefeated in the division and the Broncos were running gimmick plays with Tim Tebow by the end of the year. Once again, this wasn’t my fault. Nope.

 

 

So that’s what was, and looking at it you’d think I’d be dissuaded from trying this again right? Right? Let’s just say that tomorrow, I’m looking at getting at least half the top 10 of the Draft right tomorrow in this year’s edition and get 100% more division winners right than last year (which would be a grand total of two). However, I will tirelessly stand by these predictions, and when you come back to heckle me this year; let’s just keep it to fruit and vegetables from the townspeople. I felt a few stones last year…Rams and Chiefs fans especially.

 

 

Follow me on Twitter for Day in the Life of a guy trying to make good on promises made months before at @CheapSeatFan and @STLSport360.

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