NFL: Predicting All the 2021 NFC Division Winners
With the NFL offseason slowing down, and most major free agents off the board, we see how each team’s rosters size up in their respective divisions. With only a few major signings left to take place, as well as the NFL Draft, we have a relative idea of what teams will look like come training camps. In this article, I will be predicting each NFC division’s winner, as well as why I believe they have the edge over the other teams around them. This will factor in things such as:
- Strength of Schedule
- On paper team strength
- Potential draft moves to impact roster
- Coaching staff capabilities
With all of that out of the way, here are my picks for the NFL divisional champions.
NFC North – Green Bay Packers
After another run to the NFC Championship Game in the 2020-2021 season, the Packers have to be looking for a way to get Aaron Rodgers back to the promised land. After bringing back Aaron Jones on a four year deal, as well as some other pieces from last years team, they realistically are about the same team they were last year. Losing Christian Kirksey (cap casualty) as well as Corey Linsley (free agency) will both take a pretty major toll on the team however.
The Packers should look to address a few positions in the draft to continue their deep playoff runs. WR, LB, IOL being the major three as well as CB and OT also being in the picture for additional help. With that said, I do not believe the Bears or Lions will provide much resistance to the Packers for the division lead. Also, the Vikings are still developing their roster and could be a few seasons away from a deep playoff push.
NFC East – Dallas Cowboys
After a year primarily without starting QB Dak Prescott, and being the 10th worst team in the league record wise, the Cowboys will be looking to make a rebound this season. After bringing in some help in the secondary with safety Jayron Kearse and corner Damontae Kazee, they will still likely be looking to draft a corner this offseason.
With the NFC East still being one of the weaker divisions in the NFL, despite a good offseason for most teams, the division is pretty much for the Cowboys’ taking as long as Dak returns to form. They will have Ceedee Lamb entering his sophomore season, Amari Cooper as good as ever, and Ezekiel Elliot likely returning to form more than likely. This will also give Dak a true season to work with Mike McCarthy on his game plan and really progress as an offensive unit.
South – Tampa Bay Buccaneers
The reigning Super Bowl champs were not able to win out the NFC South last year, however in 2021-2022 I believe they will. After a rough start due to meshing and compatibility between members of the team, they finally got the ball rolling come playoff time. With all members of their starting 22 returning and signed to extensions or franchise tagged, they will have the opportunity to start off strong rather than develop over time.
In a division that is trending downwards, with the Saints having to cut a large portion of their depth for cap space, the Falcons still rebuilding, and the Panthers still in the middle of a rebuild, the division seemingly is the Bucs’ to take. Granted New Orleans is still a question mark, as they could still be in contention with a 2017 esc draft class and a revival for Jameis Winston.
NFC West – Los Angeles Rams
This is probably the hardest division in football to predict, as every single team has the potential to win it currently. Seattle won last year, San Francisco the year before, and Arizona looks like it has the roster moves to win as well. The reason I have the Rams winning is because they made it to the Super Bowl with a similar roster to what they have now. Except the main difference obviously is now they have an elite caliber QB taking the helm in Matthew Stafford.
San Francisco also made the Super Bowl with a similar roster, and they did it more recently though. However keep in mind even with the #3 overall pick this year, there’s no guarantee that whoever they take there will perform year 1. Stafford is solidified and you know what you will be getting from him one way or another. Also, the signing of DeSean Jackson could turn out to be something huge for this franchise. While he is older and has been battling injuries, putting him in the slot inside Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp will give Stafford fantastic options to look forward to.
Related Article: Cleveland Browns: Three Studs in Victory Over Pittsburgh Steelers
Who do you think will win each of the NFC divisions? Leave a comment below and let me know!
Finish a winner with IroniqMedia for all of your NFL coverage by clicking here.
Follow Jeremy on Twitter @ClutchWDN.