The NFL is enjoying a year of unparalleled parity, on the heels of the success of teams such as the Chiefs, Raiders and Buccaneers. But at the same time, several teams picked to shape the landscape of the playoffs have faltered. The Cowboys and Vikings, two teams that enjoyed deep playoff runs in 2009, and the 49ers, who finished 8-8 in the weak NFC West, were considered lead pipe locks to make the playoffs. As we hit Week 10, those three teams are a combined 6-18, with popular Super Bowl pick Dallas floundering at 1-7 and coming off their coach being fired. Let’s take a look at what’s gone wrong for these three teams, and if they have any chance of turning it around.
But here’s why each team in the NFL WON’T win the Super Bowl this year.
Buffalo Bills: There are NCAA teams that could beat the Bills. They don’t have a QB and their defense couldn’t stop offenses if they knew what play was coming. At least they have decent running back depth. Too bad their offensive line can’t block for them.
Miami Dolphins: Even with the addition of Brandon Marshall, the Dolphins still don’t have a proven passing game. Chad Henne is the guy who helmed the Michigan Wolverines against Appalachian State.
New England Patriots: Age is beginning to catch up with Patriots.Tom Brady didn’t look quite the same after a knee injury. Laurence Maroney just might be the worst starting running back in the league.They aren’t allowed to film other team’s plays anymore.
New York Jets: The Jets are the trendy preseason pick. That’s never a good sign. They cut their starting running back and replaced him with a way over the hill LaDainian Tomlinson. Mark Sanchez led the conference in interceptions last year. Who knows if Rex Ryan will be the same when he’s hungry.
Baltimore Ravens: Joe Flacco no longer has any excuses to not produce at a high level. The Ravens defense qualifies for the AARP.
Cincinnati Bengals: Since when have the Bengals been known to repeat a successful performance? Can Terrell Owens and Chad Ochocinco’s egos fit in the same room until February? Can Carson Palmer stay healthy?
Cleveland Browns: Why won’t the Browns win the Super Bowl? Is that a serious question?
Pittsburgh Steelers: Rashard Mendenhall is a decent but not great running back. Ben Roethlisberger will spend the toughest part of the Steelers’ schedule on the bench for “indiscretions”. Their defense is no longer good enough to carry them.
Houston Texans: They were below average in pass coverage last year and lost their best corner. You have to do better than 8-8 to win the Super Bowl.
Indianapolis Colts: Peyton Manning is a great player but he’s not known for postseason heroics. Their defense is also pretty terrible.
Jacksonville Jaguars: When people are talking more about the chances your team will move to London than how they will do this year, you’re probably not headed for a very successful season.
Tennessee Titans: Because you have to have something resembling a passing game to win in the playoffs. And a running back coming off a 350 carry season generally sees a drop in production.
Denver Broncos: In the past two offseasons, the Broncos have: fired their best coach ever, traded their best quarterback since John Elway, traded a wide receiver coming off a third consecutive 100 catch 1000 yard season, and drafted a quarterback best known for loving Jesus.
Kansas City Chiefs: There’s always a chance the Chiefs could win it this year. There’s always a chance that Shakira will divorce her husband for me, as well.
Oakland Raiders: If you need me to tell you why the Raiders won’t win the Super Bowl, you’re beyond help.
San Diego Chargers: I’ll take teams known for choking in the playoffs for 500, Alex.
Dallas Cowboys: This is the Cowboys year, seriously! (We were just kidding in 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009)
New York Giants: The Giants have a decent team. But you don’t win Super Bowls with decent teams, you win it with great ones.
Philadelphia Eagles: Who knows, the Eagles could finally win it this year. Donovan McNabb is bound to win it even- what’s that? They traded him? To a division rival? And they’re going to start a completely unproven player in his place? What the…
Washington Redskins: Because if Donovan McNabb gets hurt (and you know it’s going to happen at some point with that offensive line) their quarterback is Rex Grossman.
Chicago Bears: Jay Cutler doesn’t always throw interceptions, but when he does, he prefers to throw them in the red zone.
Detroit Lions: The Lions won’t win the Super Bowl this year because pigs still can’t fly.
Green Bay Packers: Who knows how great of a quarterback Aaron Rodgers could be if his offensive line gave him time to throw the ball.
Minnesota Vikings: The Vikings may make the Super Bowl, but they won’t win it. It’s karma for Brett Favre.
Atlanta Falcons: If the Falcons’ defense steps up and improves this year they have a chance at making the playoffs. That’s a long way from winning the Super Bowl.
Carolina Panthers: They have a great running game, and… absolutely no passing game to speak of. This team will miss Julius Peppers more than you think.
New Orleans Saints: I’ll believe the days of the Aints are over when I see it.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers: This team’s offense has more power outages than Enron.
Arizona Cardinals: The Cardinals will have to choose between Derek Anderson and Matt Leinart as their quarterback. Is there a neither option?
St. Louis Rams: lol
San Francisco 49ers: Their quarterback is Alex Smith, and if you think a team from the NFC West will win the Super Bowl, I’ve got some lovely riverside property in Brooklyn to sell you.
Seattle Seahawks: Now that all of his players are getting paid instead of just the best ones, will Pete Carroll be able to have the same success?