With Free Agency starting to die down a bit and the NFL draft only weeks away, NFL teams have been very active in strengthening their rosters for the upcoming football season. Teams like the Browns, Raiders and Jets have been very active in strengthening their rosters while other teams such as the Giants appear to be more geared towards rebuilding for the future.
With that being said, let’s take a look at each division to see who is in the best position to win each division for next year.
AFC East: New England Patriots
Reason: No Gronk, no problem. Tom Brady facing Ryan Fitzpatrick, Josh Allen and Sam Darnold twice a year each is enough for the Super Bowl champs to repeat as division champions.
AFC North: Cleveland Browns
Reason: John Dorsey has assembled one of the sexiest rosters in the NFL. The additions over the past two years of Jarvis Landry, Baker Mayfield, Nick Chubb, Olivier Vernon, Kareem Hunt and Odell Beckham Jr. are unprecedented and present the Browns with the best chance to take the division next year. The Steelers losses of Antonio Brown and Leveon Bell will take their toll and the Ravens defense will feature some new faces as well after the departures of C.J. Mosely, Eric Weddle and Terrell Suggs. The Bengals will face some growing pains under new head coach Zac Taylor.
AFC South: Indianapolis Colts
Reason: Andrew Luck and the revamped Colts offensive Line made a splash last year under new head coach Frank Reich. Considering Luck is the best quarterback in this division by far, plus the additions of pass-rusher Justin Houston and big-bodied receiver Devin Funchess, I like the Colts to do even better than they did last year. They are a serious contender.
AFC West: Kansas City Chiefs
Reason: The explosive offense led by Patrick Mahomes last year will carry over into this year and allow the Chiefs to run past the Raiders, Chargers and Broncos. The key addition of Tyrann Mathieu will help the Chiefs to not have to outscore their opponent every game.
NFC North: Minnesota Vikings
Reason: Do not be surprised if the Vikings return to their style of play from the 2017 season. A lot of parallels run between the 2016 season in which they finished 8-8, and this past season where they forgettably finished 8-7-1. Kevin Stefanski took over the OC position midway through last year the same as Pat Shurmur did in 2016. With a whole offseason of Stefanski running the offense and all their core pieces resigned, the Vikings are a dangerous team come 2019.
NFC South: New Orleans Saints
Reason: The Saints will be on their revenge tour this year after the heartbreaking loss they suffered in the NFC championship game a year ago. With no Mark Ingram on the roster anymore, Alvin Kamara will be fully unleashed and that is a terrifying thought for posing defenses. With Drew Brees at the helm, the Saints will always be a threat to march into the postseason.
NFC East: Philadelphia Eagles
Reason: Nobody ever repeats as division champs in the NFC East (sorry Dallas fans). Another offseason of getting healthy and not having to rehab will do Carson Wentz wonders as he should return close to his stellar 2017 form. Key additions of Jordan Howard and DeSean Jackson will help spark an offense that may not need Nick Foles’ magic this upcoming year.
NFC West: Los Angeles Rams
Reason: Despite the snoozefest they put on in the Super Bowl, the Rams have one of the best rosters in the NFL and are in the hands of a young mastermind in Sean McVay. The return of Cooper Kupp from injury as well the the addition of Eric Weddle to the secondary only helps a team that has dominated this division the past two years.
Super Bowl Champion: Minnesota Vikings over the Indianapolis Colts 31-24.
Let’s hope I didn’t jinx anything.