Half Season Check-Up: AFC Outlook
Oct 21, 2012; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson (80) talks to Baltimore Ravens fullback Vonta Leach (44) after the game at Reliant Stadium. The Texans won 43-13. Mandatory Credit: Thomas Campbell-US PRESSWIRE
We’re halfway through the season So we are in a great position to take a look at where the Ravens have been, where they are at, and where they might be going. Today I am going to take a look at the state of the AFC as it affects the Ravens playoff hopes.
To be honest, the AFC is such a huge mess that I only really want to list 2 teams here. The Ravens and the Texans. I am hesitant to even list the Ravens after they were completely humiliated by the Texans last week, but I will do it anyway. I am also going to throw out a third team, which may be a pure knee jerk reaction and say the Steelers should be right in the discussion. They looked excellent last week against the Redskins and look like they might have sorted out some of their problems. That said, I wouldn’t be super surprised to see them fall flat on their face in the near future.
The Patriots can never be overlooked, not as long as Tom Brady is the quarterback and BB is their head coach. They always have a shot and they will likely finish the season stronger then they started it. The other two teams in this category are the Broncos and the Bengals. I like the Bengals chances moving forward, they are better then they have played the last few weeks and any team with a weapon as good as AJ Green will have chances to win any game due to his explosiveness. The Broncos are another team that has struggled early but is equipped with a hall of fame quarterback. Peyton Manning will get better and better this season and come playoff time, who knows what this team could do.
Might make a run
The two teams here seem to be headed different directions. The Chargers, and Phillip Rivers, have gotten worse and worse over the past three years. Rivers used to look like an elite QB and now he is starting to look like a scrub. The Chargers desperately need a change of pace and a new front office and head coach is a necessity at this point. Even considering all of that, they still have the talent to be dangerous moving forward. The Dolphins on the other hand, seem to be on the up and up. They have recent wins over the Jets and Bengals, neither of whom play great football but both of them are talented. Ryan Tannehill has been a very pleasant surprise for Dolphins fans and he looks like a legitimate top ten pick like few expected him to do. He just seems to keep on making plays and winning games and the Dolphins are actually just ½ a game behind the Patriots in the AFC East race.
Totally out of Contention
Lets start with the Chiefs, everything about them is bad starting with their QB. They have a decent run game, but their defense is average and their offensive line isn’t much better. The Chiefs will almost certainly have a top 5 pick in the draft. Joining them as potential top 5ers are the Browns, Jaguars, Jets, Bills, Raiders, Colts, and Titans. Now, a couple of those teams aren’t all that bad (specifically the Titans and Colts) but they aren’t anywhere near contention and have very little chance of putting themselves in position to contend this season.