NFC NORTH PREDICTIONS
by Brad Holda
Green Bay 12-4
Most of the time boys, it comes down to which team has the better quarterback. And Green Bay without a doubt has the best one in Aaron Rodgers. With a solid draft class plugging in some of the missing pieces, like an underrated ILB in Jake Ryan who I can see becoming the next Clay Matthews, solid receiver in Ty Montgomery, and a duet of dynamic defensive backs giving them depth; I can see this Packers team going deep in the playoffs.
Well, the #1 defense in football has been dismantled with the loss of the two big run stuffers in Suh and Fairley. After they reshuffle the deck and fully assess the talent of the ten undrafted free agents they just signed, I have faith Caldwell will implement the right players to fit his schemes. Piecing together what seems to be a formidable offensive line will hopefully lead to more offensive production. I’m guessing a potential wild card spot.
In the second year under the tutelage of Mike Zimmer, my guess is vast improvements across the board. Teddy Bridgewater was good as a rookie and I can see him poised for a breakout season. Minnesota will boast a stout defense with newly drafted Trae Waynes paired with a lengthy Xavier Rhodes. Not to mention the purported most all around athletic linebacker in Eric Kendricks, they will be tough to put points on the board against.
Even with the new hire of John Fox, I see the Bears sitting in the basement of the North again this year. Reiterating on the first thing I said in this article, it all comes down to the quarterback. Last year Jay Cutler was woeful and there has been nothing to note that he will be any better this year. However, the Bears defense will step up because John Fox is a defensive minded coach and they definitely picked up some studs in Eddie Goldman and Adrian Amos to solidify and fill in some missing pieces.