HOTSPROTSTAKES staff predicts the 2017-18 NFL season

NFL

Holy heck, after a long off-season where no actual football was discussed and the NFL did everything they could to try and make people even more upset with the league, the NFL is back tonight as the defending champion New England Patriots take on the visiting Kansas City Chiefs.

But we’re talking the whole season, who we think makes the playoffs, wins their respective divisions, the best and worst records in the league, and of course, who we think will win the Super Bowl come February.

Let’s take a look at our picks!

@Rovitz

Best record: Patriots 14-2
Worst record: Jets 2-14
NFC Playoffs: Packers (North), Falcons (South), Seahawks (West), Cowboys (East), Giants (WC1), Vikings (WC2)
AFC Playoffs: Patriots (East), Steelers (North), Raiders (West), Titans (South), Broncos (WC1), Bengals (WC2)
Super Bowl Matchup: Patriots vs. Packers (dry heave)
Super Bowl Champion: Patriots (barf)

Honestly, the storyline I’m most interested in following this year is does the NFL rebound as a whole following last year? TV ratings were down, all anybody talked about was off-the-field issues or a quarterback taking a knee during the National Anthem. Combine that with the continued health issues that the sport causes, and I really do begin to wonder if last year was the beginning of the NFL’s slide, or just one really odd year where everything came together to knock the NFL down a peg. As for on the field, I’m interested in seeing how Matthew Stafford responds to being the league’s highest paid player. As you can see in my predictions above, I don’t think he ends up taking the Lions to the playoffs, but that’s more due to there being no talent on defense than any fault of his. Also, the Lions will go 8-8 and I hopefully don’t get to watch many games.

@KedgeOnline

Best record: New England
Worst record: Bears
NFC Playoffs: Seattle (West), Green Bay (North), Tampa (South), Dallas (East), Detroit (WC1), Atlanta (WC2)
AFC Playoffs: Oakland (West), Steelers (North), Pats (East), Titans (South), Chiefs (WC1), Buffalo (WC2)
Super Bowl Matchup: New England vs. Tampa
Super Bowl Champion: New England

The thing I’m looking for this year is an insane amount of head coach turnover. So many coaches are on the hot seat going into the year and it’s not just loser coaches like Marvin Lewis, Chuck Pagano, Todd Bowles and John Fox that are in trouble. I think 3 Super Bowl winning coaches are in real danger of losing their jobs if this season goes poorly. If Green Bay crashes out of the playoffs with those same defensive problems that have been around for years, I can see Mike McCarthy being gone. Same with Sean Payton in New Orleans. Payton is undoubtedly the best coach in franchise history but if the Saints fail to make the playoffs for a fourth straight year, I think they will clean house and start a rebuild. Finally, I think John Harbaugh is in danger too. Since winning the Super Bowl they have missed the playoffs 3 of the last 4 years. Baltimore’s management is getting sick of watching Pittsburgh finish higher than them.

@BrianoMobile

Best Record: Patriots
Worst Record: Browns
NFC Playoffs: Packers (North), Seahawks (West), Cowboys (East), Panthers (South), Eagles (WC1), Giants (WC2)
AFC Playoffs: Patriots (East), Raiders (West), Steelers (North), Titans (South), Broncos (WC1), Chiefs (WC2)
Super Bowl Matchup: Patriots vs. Cowboys
Super Bowl Champion: Patriots

It feels inevitable that someone is going to hire Jeff Fisher for some reason and I am just itching to see it happen.

@LukeIsAmazing

Best Record: fucking Pats
Worst record: Jets
NFC Playoffs: Cowboys, Pack, Seahawks, Falcons, Panthers (wc), Vikings (wc)
AFC Playoffs: Pats, Steelers, Chiefs, Titans, Raiders (wc), Broncos (wc)
Super Bowl Matchup: Steelers vs. Pack
Super Bowl Champ: Steelers

How long will I continue to be pissed about 28-3? Will it last after the birth of my daughter? My own death? Will it consume me to the point that I become a sentient being traveling the universe unable to rest, sleep, dream in death because of my spite? Fucking football, I’m so glad you’re back.

@WillForThrill

Best record: Patriots
Worst record: Jets
NFC Playoffs: Cowboys, Buccaneers, Packers, Seahawks, Giants, Falcons
AFC division winners: Patriots, Texans, Steelers, Raiders, Chiefs, Colts
Super Bowl matchup: Patriots vs. Cowboys
Super Bowl champion: Patriots

A lot of those are out of my ass. The Patriots are just a safe bet no matter what.

@AVKingJames

Best record: New England
Worst record: New York Jets
Super Bowl Matchup: New England vs. Seattle
Super Bowl Champ: New England (because this is 2017 and nothing is good anymore)

I am gonna be watching for terrible QB play. There’s nothing more fun, in my opinion, than watching mediocre QB’s making average defenses look like the 1985 Bears. And you know the meme and conversation will be great on Twitter dot com when that does happen.

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