Revisiting Pre Snap Reads 2013 NFL Record Predictions

The 2013 NFL Regular Season is over. That means it’s time to revisit pre-season predictions that were made. Let’s celebrate my genius! Then laugh at my idiocy! It’s mostly idiocy…

There is a little explanation of why I made my prediction at the time and what happened to prove me wrong/right.

NFC North

Green Bay Packers
Actual Record: 8-7-1
My Prediction: 12-4

I think this could easily have happened if Aaron Rodgers was healthy for 16 games.

Chicago Bears
Actual Record: 8-8
My Prediction: 10-6

Not too far off. The defense was much worse than I expected it to be though. Trestman proved to be the expected offensive guru, but some of his decision-making makes me worry about his future.

Minnesota VIkings
Actual Record: 5-10
My Prediction: 8-8

I think the defense performed worse than I expected. I probably gave them too much credit based solely on their playoff status from the previous season. Part of me put too much belief in Christian Ponder’s ability to just be a solid starter with Greg Jennings and Cordarrelle Patterson adding to the offense. Obviously that didn’t happen and quarterback turmoil along with bad defense made this team worse than I anticipated.

Detroit Lions
Actual Record: 7-9
My Prediction: 4-12

I made this prediction based on the idea that the Lions coaching staff was terrible and I didn’t have any trust in their rebuilt offensive line. The coaching staff did prove to be terrible, but the offensive line was way better than I could ever have imagined it would have been. Even though this prediction is four games off numerically, I don’t think it was that bad of a miss because I’ll be shocked if Jim Schwartz and his crew return to Detroit next season.

 

NFC South

Carolina Panthers
Actual Record: 12-4
My Prediction: 4-12

I iz dumb!!!

I expected the offense to be better, but the secondary was a complete mess entering the season. Pressure upfront was always going to help and Kuechly became a star, but I thought the lack of talent in the secondary would cripple them like it had the New Orleans Saints the previous season.

Atlanta Falcons
Actual Record: 4-12
My Prediction: 11-5

I knew the defense was dropping off, but I expected the offense to be the best in the NFL and compensate for it. Injuries played a major role, but  in hindsight I doubt this team would ever have been better than 8-8 even at full strength.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Actual Record: 4-12
My Prediction: 7-9

I sold on this team because I didn’t trust Josh Freeman. Many really liked the offense around him and expected him to have a huge year at the time. I didn’t have much affection for Schiano, but I had no idea he’d prove to be so inept with his usage of Darrelle Revis, Gerald McCoy and his general handle on things.

New Orleans Saints
Actual Record: 11-5
My Prediction: 11-5

Rob Ryan, not Sean Payton was the reason I bet on this team in the AFC South. It proved to be a smart decision.

NFC East

Dallas Cowboys
Actual Record: 8-8/9-7
My Prediction: 10-6

Drugs. I blame drugs. Or alcohol. Not enough alcohol. *Promises self not to believe in a franchise run by Jerruh next season*

New York Giants
Actual Record: 7-9
My Prediction: 8-8

It was clear that this roster was in a bad way. I expected Eli Manning to drag them to .500 and he nearly did. In spite of all his turnovers, a large reason for Manning’s struggles was the supporting cast.

Washington
Actual Record: 3-13
My Prediction: 7-9

I’m annoyed at myself for this one. There was nothing to like about the Washington roster and I predicted Griffin would struggle. I should have been braver here and trusted my own instincts instead of allowing myself to be distracted by the names of those involved and the opinions of others.

Philadelphia Eagles
Actual Record: 9-7/10-6
My Prediction: 4-12

When I read the comments from Kelly’s defensive coordinator at Oregon, I feared that Kelly was a glorified offensive coordinator. He kind of is, but it also worked so I was completely wrong on him.

NFC West

Seattle Seahawks
Actual Record: 13-3
My Prediction: 12-4

Best team in football then. Best team in football now. This one didn’t take any intelligence.

San Francisco 49ers
Actual Record: 12-4
My Prediction: 12-4

I was actually disappointed in this team. Yes they lived up to expectations, but the quality of football they have played throughout the season has been much lower than it was last season in my opinion.

Arizona Cardinals
Actual Record: 10-6
My Prediction: 10-6

I was called crazy, but sometimes you need a little bit of crazy. Carson Palmer wasn’t as good as I expected him to be, but the difference in having him at quarterback opposed to John Skelton or Kevin Kolb was always going to be huge for the offense. Bruce Arians’ impact on the offense also gave Michael Floyd and Larry Fitzgerald the boost they needed to be effective again. Defensively, Ray Horton’s aggression had elevated the Cardinals defense, but a more tempered approach in 2013 made them a better all-around unit. Losing both safeties was a big problem, but it was clear to me that John Abraham and Karlos Dansby weren’t done when they arrived as free agents. Tyrann Mathieu was a pleasant surprise because I expected Javier Arenas to be the slot guy. Understanding the talent that was already on the defense made that irrelevant either way.

St. Louis Rams
Actual Record: 7-9
My Prediction: 8-8

I didn’t see Bradford getting injured obviously, but I also didn’t see Clemens playing competent football in his wake. The offense should have been more effective, but I didn’t account for such bad interior offensive line play. I thought Daryl Richardson could actually be a decent starter, but Zac Stacy proved to be much more than that. The defense was basically what I expected. Led by Robert Quinn. Held back by their overall lack of discipline.

AFC North

Pittsburgh Steelers
Actual Record: 8-8
My Prediction: 11-5

I invested in the health of Ben Roethlisberger and Troy Polamalu. Both were healthy, but neither were as effective as they have been in the past over 16 games. I invested in the promise that many of the Steelers’ younger players had shown, very little of which was actually realised. I didn’t account for Ryan Clark’s plummeting physical talents that negated all the good work he had done in recent seasons. It was only three games off numerically, but I expected a much higher standard of football from this team than they ultimately put out.

Cincinnati Bengals
Actual Record: 11-5
My Prediction: 11-5

I had a good feeling for this team. Dalton is a disaster, but the roster around him is outstanding. They took a different route to 11-5 because of key injuries, but they are what I expected them to be before the season began.

Baltimore Ravens
Actual Record: 8-8
My Prediction: 8-8

Quote from before the season: “Their defense will be much better, but their offense will cripple them.” The offense did cripple them, but the defense wasn’t as good as I expected it to be. It was somewhat quizzical really. Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil were outstanding early in the year, but they faded suddenly and the secondary played way too much zone coverage that hindered the impact of Lardarius Webb. Michael Huff’s demise was predictable, even though I didn’t expect him to go so far that he was released.

Cleveland Browns
Actual Record: 4-12
My Prediction: 7-9

Tough to really gauge this because of their quarterback injuries, but I never felt this roster and coaching staff together equalled a playoff appearance. If Brian Hoyer stayed fully healthy for 16 games, then they could have come close.

AFC South

Houston Texans
Actual Record: 2-14
My Prediction: 11-5

I didn’t see Matt Schaub’s demise. I didn’t see the declining defense and I convinced myself Ed Reed would be fully healthy and a major addition somehow. I need to get myself tested for drugs.

Indianapolis Colts
Actual Record: 11-5
My Prediction: 9-7

Hated the roster, loved the quarterback. Still hate the roster, love the quarterback. Benefactors of a very bad division.

Tennessee Titans
Actual Record: 7-9
My Prediction: 4-12

I didn’t buy into Jake Locker. I liked the roster around him, but I didn’t realize just how much talent the roster had. I also expected Mike Munchak to be fired eventually, but now I think he deserves to keep his job.

Jacksonville Jaguars
Actual Record: 4-12
My Prediction: 4-12

I believed in Gus Bradley. My faith was rewarded.

AFC East

New England Patriots
Actual Record: 12-4
My Prediction: 12-4

Trusted in Bill Belichick and the weak division. He really is an incredible coach and the biggest reason for their continued success.

Miami Dolphins
Actual Record: 8-8
My Prediction: 8-8

Jeff Ireland paid for mediocrity, but the Dolphins were fortunate to even get that considering how their season went. Obviously nobody saw Jonathan Martin and Richie Incognito’s situation, but the frailties on the offensive line were easy to see. As expected, Brent Grimes was an excellent free agent addition and their best.

New York Jets
Actual Record: 8-8
My Prediction: 5-11

I was supposedly higher on the Jets than most before the season, but I didn’t expect them to go 8-8. Rex Ryan is a really good coach, I knew that, but maybe I undersold how good Sheldon Richardson would make the rest of the defensive front.

Buffalo Bills
Actual Record: 6-10
My Prediction: 3-13

Mike Pettine and Thad Lewis ruined my prediction here. I thought the defense was a few pieces away from being as good as it was and I expected EJ Manuel to really limit the offense, which he did when he was healthy.

AFC West

Denver Broncos
Actual Record: 13-3
My Prediction: 14-2

That damn Thursday Night Football game against the Chargers…

Kansas City Chiefs
Actual Record: 11-5
My Prediction: 7-9

Andy Reid is a better coach than I gave him credit for.

San Diego Chargers
Actual Record: 9-7
My Prediction: 3-13

Honestly though, who saw Philip Rivers turning into MVPhilip Rivers again?

Oakland Raiders
Actual Record: 4-12
My Prediction: 1-15

There were way too many moving pieces on the defense for me to trust them, but defensive coordinator Jason Tarver did a really good job. The absence of any kind of quarterback talent made me think this was going to be one of the worst seasons in NFL history. Matt Flynn was expected to start when I made the prediction.

One Response to “Revisiting Pre Snap Reads 2013 NFL Record Predictions

  • i really respect the honesty to come back and make a full appraisal of your predictions, especially admitting when you got the record right for the wrong reasons. although i guess it’s easy to be honest when you predictions were so good!

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