The NFL season is now upon us following the first preseason game. There's just a bit over four more weeks until the Seattle Seahawks host the Green Bay Packers in the regular-season opener.
The defending champion Seahawks are the favorites to represent the NFC in this year's Super Bowl, but who will they face? We gathered our staff and posed this question to them:
"Who is your favorite to represent the AFC in the Super Bowl?"
Honestly, it could be the Bengals in the AFC, given the overall talent of the roster. But, erratic quarterback play and poor coaching at times by Marvin Lewis could just as easily see this uber-talented team go 8-8 and miss the playoffs. Denver or New England are always safe bets, so I'll go with them until the Bengals prove that they can beat those types of teams in the postseason.
Denver Broncos. They were the best team in the AFC in 2013 and I believe they got better in 2014...oh yeah, and they still have a guy named Peyton Manning. I see the AFC having 3 Tiers in 2014:
Tier 1 is the Broncos, Tier 2 includes 5-6 teams (the Bengals being one) and Tier 3 is the rest.
The Denver Broncos seem to be the team to beat this year in the AFC. They were a dominant team last season and added pieces to the roster that made them better in the offseason. Peyton Manning has his weapons and the defense got stronger in a couple areas. I don't see anyone keeping pace with the Broncos.
With the additions the Denver Broncos made in free agency and in the draft I think they have to be considered the favorite in the AFC.
We all know how talented this Bengals roster is, there is no doubt that. We all also know this team hasn't won a playoff game in 24 years. I would be a homer to pick the Bengals.
I have to say I like what the Broncos have done this offseason. To say they are pushing all their chips to the center of the table, is an understatement. On defense, they added DeMarcus Ware to help out Von Miller with the pass rush. Swapping Aqib Talib for Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie is an upgrade in the secondary as well, not to mention they added Buckeye fan-favorite Bradley Roby in the draft.
They have arguably the best QB in the league. Peyton Manning makes every WR better, and Cody Latimer will be no different. He was a steal where they got him. Roby and Latimer will contribute this year at some point. I say Peyton and the Broncos beat the Bengals in a shootout in the AFC championship game.
Notice: I slipped in the Bengals first playoff win in 24 years without you calling me a homer.