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Euphoria 05-11-2004 08:39 PM

Division Foes
 
We will sweep everyone except the Falcons... and we won\'t be swept.

D_it_up 05-12-2004 09:38 AM

Division Foes
 
I don\'t think Carolina vastly improved, but they did stay fairly intact from last year. They\'ll still be tough to beat. Tampa didn\'t do anything to impress me really. Michael Clayton was a nice pick-up in the draft along with Ian Gold in FA, but will they turn that team around? The Falcons seemed to do the best all around of our rivals, but with a new coach how will they mesh? The Saints had an average FA and a better than average draft. How they spin it all together is another story. I think the team to beat this year will be the Panthers, because Jake has one full season behind him as a starter and he should continue to improve. The Falcons will be competitive as will the Bucs, but I (hesitantly) choose the Saints to finish 2nd with a spot in the wild card game as the 6th NFC representative as long as this team stays healthy.

LordOfEntropy 05-12-2004 10:36 AM

Division Foes
 
I\'m with ya Gator. 2-14 is fine as long as Atlanta gets swept. That story with your nephew just makes me absolutely sick. There\'s absolutely no excuse for that kind of behavior, I don\'t care how drunk you are, how BIG a fan you are. There\'s no excuse.

I still haven\'t forgotten (or forgiven) those ridiculous last second hail mary passes in the late 70\'s. Back to back seasons... I still cringe when I think of that, who was that schmuck, Bartkowski?

But with regards to nasty fans, yes. I\'ve almost gotten in a couple brawls in the GA Dome myself, and I\'m usually pretty laid back at the games. I live in Atlanta, and I have to hear it from these jerks day in day out. So I truly look forward to the day (which will never come) when THESE jerks are wearing the bags on the heads. Would be a nice change.

Don\'t get me wrong, I know all their fans aren\'t bad. I know many, and many are good people. But a lot of them are not, and it\'s worse here than some of the other places I\'ve lived.


Danno 05-12-2004 11:05 AM

Division Foes
 
Those Falcon fans are eerily similar to LSU fans aren’t they?

GumboBC 05-12-2004 11:08 AM

Division Foes
 
1. Saints
2. Tampa
3. Carolina
4. Atlanta

Saints -- Offense will be back to form and defense will be able to stop the run and generate a strong pass rush.


Tampa -- Yeah, they lost Sapp and Lynch, but it\'s still a good defense. It wont be as strong as they once were, but I think they will still finish in the top 10. This year the Bucs offense is going to have a lot more speed and I consider Gruden one of the best at getting an offense to perform. Charlie Garner and Michael Clayton are 2 weapons Gruden will get the ball to often.

Carolina -- Their defense remains one of the best in the NFL. But, I can\'t see them playing any better than they did last year and they could have easily finished 8-8. I think their offense is going to be their big down-fall this year. I do not believe the running game will carry them like last year. The passing game is going to have to take it to the next level. Maybe Jake can do it, but I think it\'s going to be too much for Jake and the receivers to shoulder. If this team loses a few of those close ones, the ones they lucked up and won, their confidence will be tested. Count this team in for a Super Bowl slump.

Atlanta -- Mike Vick is back and they\'ll be dangerous on offense. The offensive line is suspect, but should be slightly improved. The D-line is highly suspect and it\'s going to prove to be the downfall of their season. Jim Mora Jr. will go through the normal growing pains as a rookie coach. It\'ll be interesting to see how Vick and the rest respond to Mora if they lose a few games early.



[Edited on 12/5/2004 by GumboBC]

LordOfEntropy 05-12-2004 11:24 AM

Division Foes
 
Quote:

Those Falcon fans are eerily similar to LSU fans aren’t they?
Nah, LSU fans aren\'t fans only when they\'re winning. The vast majority of fans up here are Braves fans, i.e. they\'re only Falcons fans when they\'re beating somebody. And since the Falcons have never had back to back winning seasons, that makes them inconsistent fans at best.

WhoDat 05-12-2004 01:52 PM

Division Foes
 
Tough, tough, tough. At this point it is hard to tell. I think Carolina won a lot of close games last year, it was the textbook cinderella story. I imagine their LUCK (ha ha) will run out this year and they, like most Super Bowl teams of recent, will fall to mediocrity.

Their passing attack improved steadily throughout the year, but everyone knows the story. Stack the line, stop Davis and Foster, and then put pressure on Delhomme and keep Steve Smith in front of you. Their defense will still be tough, but I think they will be around .500.

Atlanta will get much better simply by bringing Vick back into the fold. Plus, I think Mora Jr. will have their defense playing well by year\'s end. Atlanta will improve the most. How much is another question. My guess is they end up around .500 also but play really well down the stretch (which is bad b/c that\'s when we play them twice).

Tampa seems unimpressive to me. Gruden is a great coach, but that team is just devoid of playmakers. Rice and Brooks are about it. With Charles Lee and now Clayton, their passing game should get better. They still won\'t be able to run the ball and their defense will not be what it was, or has been.

Honestly, if I had to pick a favorite right now, I would have to say our Saints. We\'re the most talented, we need the fewest big changes to help our team improve. Don\'t get me wrong, we might only hang around .500 too, but...

This is all subject to change, of course, but I really think the difference b/w first and last in our division might be two or three games this year. You might see 10-6, 9-7, 8-8, 7-9.

Screw it - in my new attempt to be more upbeat about the 04 season, I\'ll say:

1. Saints
2. Falcons
3. Carolina
4. Bucs

Go Saints!

Chuck 05-12-2004 01:57 PM

Division Foes
 
Are you guys really worried about Mora, I really don\'t remember the 49er defense being a power house, plus, will he be able to keep vick healthy, I haven\'t seen that yet and we know what happens to that team when they loose vick.


In 2003 the 49ers ranked 13th in total defense
In 2002 the 49ers ranked 14th in total defense

Thats slightly above average, I think you might need more than that to help Atlanta

In 2003 the falcons ranked 32 in total defense
In 2002 the falcons ranked 20 in total defense

[Edited on 12/5/2004 by Chuck]

BrooksMustGo 05-12-2004 02:08 PM

Division Foes
 
If we start Brooks for all 6 divisional games, we do no better than 3-3, but probably more like 2-4. If we start O\'Sullivan in all 6 of those games, we go 4-2 minimum.

GumboBC 05-12-2004 02:09 PM

Division Foes
 
What? We got WhoDat picking the Saints to finish first in the division!! Boy\'s and girls, go get your playoff tickets now. Cause if WhoDat sees us getting there this year, then you just got to believe there\'s something good in store -- ;)


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