Another glorious NFL off season. Can't you just breathe in the air of hopefulness now that the dust is settling after the initial flurry of free agency. Teams and fans have settled in to take in their "new look" teams and coaches to convince themselves that everything is going to be alright. This is going to be the year that we go all the way. Things will be better.
Sickening... 32 teams worth of players staff and fans are all convincing themselves of the same thing folks. For 31 of them, you're in for the possibility of a big steamy pile of disappointment. My intent is to release four separate polls prior to the draft and a second set of four polls subsequent to the draft to see which team my fellow readers of the most sanctified Dailynorseman feel is in for the biggest surprise turd season. If there's interest, I'll use those two polls to determine seeding to create a bracket challenge to determine the most likely disappointment of the 2014 season. For fun, I'll combine the AFC and NFC into a combination to provide a field of eight possible stinkers to choose from in this post. My brief impressions of each team and their moves to this point follow with the poll to close it out. My first edition will be for the northern teams; home to football dynasties, Superbowl winners and grid iron toughness, as well as the Detroit Lions. Enjoy!
BALTIMORE RAVENS- We just won the Superbowl! Lets overpay our fair to middling QB and have a fire sale on all the other available talent! Things are really looking up for the defending champs with the acquisition of Rolando McClain. Nothing helps put your team back on solid ground like a player cut from the Raiders.
CINCINNATI BENGALS- Following back to back trips to the playoffs to be brushed aside by the Texans, is this the year the Bengals figure it out? As long as AJ Green is snagging anything thrown his way, maybe they can add Rex Grossman as a backup in the event Andy Dalton goes down.
CLEVELAND BROWNS- Perhaps this blurb should be sub-titled "Under New Management". Mike Holmgren is the most recent NFL piece moving to Seattle, albeit as a broadcaster. The dog pound can continue their faith in a nearly thirty year old second year quarterback and a running back that believes the newly added crown rule was directed at him.
PITTSBURG STEELERS- With the latest rumors indicating that the Patriots are making a move on received Emmanuel Sanders in a route that is sure to make even more fans hate the Patriots, the Steelers look to be on the verge of being even older in average age. It's a little known fact that after practice, the Steelers D has a spirited game of bingo every Wednesday night.
CHICAGO BEARS- It only took the Bears four years of Jay Cutler getting beat to hell to attempt to shore up their offensive line with the additions of Bushrod at tackle and Slauson at guard. If this is actually an improvement remains to be seen. If they are up to the task, I will truly miss the image of Cutler losing his mind at teammates when things go sour.
DETROIT LIONS- Reggie Bush? Seriously, that's the big name answer to your problems? I will applaud the decision to let Avril go as I think him very over rated, but not sold on Glover Quin as an upgrade. Though all things considered, Lions fans can sleep soundly at night knowing that things could be worse. They could be the Jets.
GREEN BAY PACKERS- Word is that Aaron Rodgers is anticipating a long term deal to be signed by the start of training camp. A deal making him the highest paid QB in the history of the world. Packers fans may want to seek solace in the arms of Ravens fans to see the results of an enormous payday. If you have a single bad draft, things can go to pot for years to come.
MINNESOTA VIKINGS- Employing a cyborg affords one the option to let locker cancer divas escape to Seattle... repeatedly. The loss of Percy Harvin will not have the same impact as the loss of Antoine Winfield in my opinion. But this off season, QB Christian Ponder has taken up the art of geomancy and intends to improve the team and make a run for the Superbowl by improving the feng shui of the locker room. This might be patently false.
Remember when casting your vote that this based purely on the odds that the hopes of a fan base for a given team will be dashed to shreds. Simply because the Eagles were 4-12 last season does not mean they can't be a disappointment this season due to the sweeping changes implemented to try to stop the bleeding.