2011 NFC West Preview & Predictions
The addition of Kevin Kolb should be enough to catapult the Cardinals to the top of a weak NFC West. Veteran tight-end Todd Heap will also provide Kolb with a nice security blanket over the middle. One of the main keys to the Cardinals success is the maturation of running back Beanie Wells, who will be getting the majority of the carries now that Tim Hightower is gone. Overall, the Cardinals made some nice roster upgrades and will be fighting for the top spot on the NFC West.
Key Arrivals – Kevin Kolb, Todd Heap, Vonnie Holliday, Daryn Colledge, Patrick Peterson, Stewart Bradley
Key Departures – DRC, Steve Breaston, Matt Leinart, Tim Hightower, Derek Anderson, Gerald Hayes, Ben Patrick, Gabe Watson, Alan Faneca
Prediction – 9-7/First in NFC West
St. Louis Rams
Sam Bradford and Steven Jackson headline a rising young Rams team looking to take a stranglehold on the weak NFC West. Adding Cadillac Williams and Mike Sims-Walker only gives the second year QB more toys to play with. Head coach Steve Spagnoulo is a defensive mastermind as well. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Rams win the division.
Key Arrivals – Cadillac Williams, Jerious Norwood, Brady Poppinga, Justin Bannan, Al Harris, Quintin Mikell, Mike Sims-Walker
Key Departures – Oshiomogho Atogwe, Kenneth Darby, Laurent Robinson, Michael Lewis
Prediction – 8-8/Second in NFC West
San Francisco 49ers
First year head coach Jim Harbaugh has his work cut out for him. Quarterback Alex Smith has shown time and time again that he’s just not capable of being a starter in this league. Frank Gore is their sole provider on offense in both the passing and running game. and the defense has holes in the secondary. I think the 49ers will have a 2011 season that’s very similar to their 2010 season.
Key Arrivals – Braylen Edwards, Donte Whitner, Madieu Williams, Carlos Rogers, Jonathan Goodwin, David Akers
Key Departures – David Baas, Nate Clements, Joe Nedney, Aubrayo Franklin, Dashon Goldson, Manny Lawson, Takeo Spikes, Travis LaBoy
Prediction – 6-10/Third in NFC West
The Seahawks have a ton of quality backup quarterbacks but none are capable starters. Tarvaris Jackson is the front-runner for the starting job considering his relationship with the offensive coordinator, dating back to his days in Minnesota. I don’t think the Seahawks will be lucky again this season as I predict they’ll be one of the NFL’s worst teams.
Key Arrivals – Tarvaris Jackson, Matt Leinart, Jeff Reed, Zach Miller, Sidney Rice, Robert Gallery, Alan Branch
Key Departures – Lofa Tatupu, Stacy Andrews, Jordan Babineaux, Matt Hasselbeck, Olindo Mare, Will Herring
Prediction – 4-12/Last in NFC West