August 27, 2014 | Posted in: The Wisdom of RastaJay
Back by popular demand, here are my 20 Amazingly Leet Predictions for the 2014 NFL Season.
1. New England breaks Denver’s yardage record, Tom Brady challenges Manning’s 55 TDs, and New England wins Super Bowl 49.
Aaron Dobson, Kenbrell Thompkins, Julian Edelman, a hopefully healthy Danny Amendola, and they added Brandon LaFell. Five solid options at WR and this writer is banking on a healthy 16 games from TE Rob Grankowski. Stevan Ridley adds power to the running game and Shane Vereen could be all world in PPR fantasy leagues.
2. 5 QBs pass for 5,000 yards
Manning, Brady, Brees, Stafford, and Rodgers.
This is the New NFL.
In 2002, 4 QBs threw for 4,000 yards. In 2003, 2 QBs threw for 4,000 yards. In 2004, 5 QBs threw for 4,000 yards.
In 2013, 9 QBs threw for 4,000 yards and Dan Marino’s 1984 record 5,084 yards was surpassed by 2 QBs. In 2012, 11 QBs threw for 4,000 yards … the same total, 11, as the years 2002-2004. The NFL is a pass first league and the records will continue to fall in coming seasons. In 2011, 10 QBs threw for 4,000 yards with 3 QBs over 5,000 yards, including two surpassing Marino’s 5084 yards in 1984.
5,000 passing yards in a season has been accomplished 8 times by 5 players. Brees, Stafford, Brady, and Manning simply throw for 5,000 yards again in their careers, like Drew Brees has done 4 times in his career, and they are joined by 5k newcomer Aaron Rodgers making 5 NFL QBs with 5,000 yards.
3. Julio Jones breaks Calvin Johnson’s record for yardage in a season.
His athleticism, size, speed, hands, everything about him is All Pro. This writer is banking on a healthy 16 games from Jones who easily replaces the production of TE Tony Gonzalez.
4. It’s Tampa Bay in the playoff conversation Week 17, not Carolina
Lovie Smith has some talent on both sides of the ball in Tampa Bay. Josh McCown shows he can start in the NFL, Vincent Jackson has an All-Pro year, rookies Mike Evans and Austin-Seferian Jenkins (first round talent) develop on the faster end of the WR and TE scale, and Doug Martin leads the NFL in rushing, with 1477 yards.
5. Rob Gronkowski breaks Randy Moss’ record for receiving TDs in a season.
See #1. 24 TDs for Gronk in 2014.
6. Demaryius Thomas breaks Moss’ record as well.
No doubt the Denver offense will roll this year, just not to last year’s level. Now the clear #1 option in the passing game, his elite talent combined with the record assault on passing yardage and associated records has him hauling in a league leading 25 TDs.
7. Reggie Bush has 2,000 combined yards and double digit TDs.
Bush pounds out 1300 yards on the ground and another 700 through the air on 80 receptions. The other running backs on the Lions do not matter, it’s all about what Reggie Bush does on his 20 touches per game. This writer is banking on 15 carries a game plus 80 receptions … 320 touches, 16 games, 20 touches per game. It’s realistic.
Maybe since the season is just starting, one can be hopeful and say Reggie Bush has 346 touches in 2014, 21.625 touches per game. Bush averages 5.8 yards per touch over his 7 year NFL career. 346 * 5.8 = 2,029. It’s not THAT far fetched.
8. No RB rushes for more than 1500 yards.
In 2002, 4 RBs rushed for 1500 yards. In 2003, 6 RBs rushed for 1500 yards. In 2004, 5 RBs rushed for 1500 yards. In 2011, 1 RB rushed for 1500 yards. In 2012, 4 RBs rushed for 15oo yards. In 2013, 1 RB rushed for 1500 yards. The days of the 20 carries per game for a feature back are disappearing as the New NFL adopts a running back by committee approach. The 2014 NFL draft featured Bishop Sankey, RB, selected in the second round at Pick 54, the latest a RB has ever been taken in an NFL draft.
9. 2014 is Tony Romo’s last season in Dallas.
Jason Garrett too. The defense will be too lousy and Tony Romo will make key mistakes in key situations leaving Dallas on the outside looking in come Wild Card weekend in January 2015.
10. Victor Cruz reestablishes himself as the go to receiver in the NFC East.
Because its the New York Giants in playoff contention come Week 17, not Dallas.
11. The loss of Knowshon Moreno, Eric Decker, plus Wes Welker’s concussion issues, impact Denver more than Las Vegas odds currently indicate.
I wrote why Denver will not win Superbowl 49. Hey Mike, it’s a website. I can’t list everything on a single page, it’s why a website has multiple pages. You have to clink on the links to learn more. Manning and Denver will be every bit as explosive on offense in 2014 and their defense made improvements with the signing of Ware and Ward. There’s simply less options … creating the opportunity for Demaryius Thomas to showcase his elite talent.
12. Seattle plays on the road during the NFC playoffs as an 11 win team
The NFC West goes to San Francisco.
13. 10 wins misses the 2014 NFC Playoffs for the 3rd year in a row.
St. Louis, Chicago, Detroit, Tampa, Carolina, Dallas, New York Giants (do you really still doubt Eli Manning after 2007 & 2011?), Philadelphia, New Orleans, San Francisco, Atlanta, Seattle, Green Bay. 13 teams, I didn’t include Arizona, Washington, or Minnesota and all 3 of those teams are going to be better than conventional wisdom dictates, and there are 6 playoff spots.
14. 2014 NFC Division Winners – San Francisco, New Orleans, Green Bay, Philadelphia in order of seeding.
Do the New York Giants win the NFC East? How many wins does it take to win the NFC East? 8? 9? Does New Orleans win 14 games and come away with the #1 seed in the conference? Will Detroit and Chicago both contend in the NFC North? The NFL is so difficult to prognosticate.
15. 2014 AFC Division Winners – New England, Denver, Cincinnati, Indianapolis in order of seeding
Will 2013 Playoff teams Kansas City and San Diego challenge Denver for the AFC West title? Is Cincinnati really too talented to miss the playoffs entirely? How good will Houston be defensively this year? The intrigue is much lower in the AFC this season … Oakland, Jacksonville, Cleveland, Baltimore, Tennessee, Miami, and Buffalo are not in legitimate conversations when it comes to division winners.
16. 2014 NFC Wildcard Teams – Seattle, Tampa Bay
Anointing Seattle repeat champions in 2014 is ridiculous. Writing the Seahawks aren’t going to make the 2014 playoffs is ignorant. They’re too talented returning too many players on a significantly more dominant defense statistically than any other team to miss out on January playoff action. Tampa Bay is one of the surprise teams, 2013’s version of Kansas City/San Diego.
17. 2014 AFC Wild Card Teams – Pittsburgh, New York Jets
Roethlisberger reminds everyone he’s a franchise QB and somehow, some way, the New York Jets find a way to sneak in at #6 amidst a 5 way tie in the AFC at 9-7. You’ll need an abacus to figure out the tie breakers and Rex Ryan prevails. He might be the greatest coach in the history of the NFL.
18. 2014 NFC Final Four – San Francisco, Seattle, Green Bay, New Orleans
Seattle @ San Francisco in the 2014 NFC Division Round is just too epic. Already playing two games in the 2014 Regular season, swept by SF, giving the niners home field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs … their third meeting of the season adds to their already epic lore as it may be the NFLs premiere rivalry.
19. 2014 AFC Final Four – New England, Denver, Pittsburgh, Indianapolis
Belichick continues to madden Ben Roethlisberger and New England escapes with a win against the one team nobody wanted to see in the playoffs. Denver handles Luck and Company despite Manning’s poor performance, setting up Manning v Brady, in New England, for the 2014 AFC Championship. The intrigue and drama.
20. SuperBowl 49 – New England v. San Francisco
Tom Brady and Bill Belichick play in a record 6th SuperBowl, bringing home the elusive fourth title. New England will be all in for the next three seasons with Tom Brady playing the quarterback position. A title in 2014, followed by a title in either 2015 (back to back) or 2016, would give Tom Brady 5 Superbowl rings. There would be no debate, Montana never won 5 Superbowls. In the mid 1980s, the Chicago Bears, Washington Redskins, and New York Giants prevented Montana from even playing in 5 Superbowls, and we’d be talking about Brady with 7 Superbowl appearances with 5 titles. In 2014, there was simply too much talent on the offensive side of the ball and the resurgent Patriot defense, led by a healthy Jarod Mayo, the reestablishment of Revis Island, coupled with the best line backing corps Belichick has guided since Harry Carson, Lawrence Taylor, Carl Banks, and Pepper Johnson all contributed to the Patriots magical 2014 season.