Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Got Parity?

We’re about halfway through the season, and man, there are some shitty teams in this league. I can’t remember there being a year when this many teams were marginally competitive at best. I’ll leave Carolina out because, while they’re having a really down year, they showed last week that they still have the talent to beat playoff caliber teams. Below are the 11 teams that I feel fall into the “Damn, they’re bad!” category. I list their remaining schedules and mark in red the games that they are likely to lose.

Washington Redskins (2-5)
Why they’re bad: Poor play from Jason Campbell; a porous offensive line; can’t blame the defense
Remaining games: @ATL, vDEN, @DAL, @PHI, vNO, @OAK, vNYG, vDAL, @SD
Possible/Likely final record: 3-13

Detroit Lions (1-6)
Why they’re bad: Bad offensive line; breaking in a rookie QB; no receiving threats outside Megatron; pass defense has allowed 18 TDs (Tennessee worst at 19)
Remaining games: @SEA, @MIN, vCLE, vGB, @CIN, @BAL, vARI, @SF, vCHI
Possible/Likely final record: 2-14

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-7)
Why they’re bad: Uncommitted ownership; miserable offseason planning and implementation; wretched coaching; horrid tackling on defense; 3rd worst in the league with 162 rushing yards allowed per game; also 3rd worst with 11 sacks on the year; very little receiving talent
Remaining games: vGB, @MIA, vNO, @ATL, @CAR, vNYJ, @SEA, @NO, vATL
Possible/Likely final record: 0-16

Seattle Seahawks (2-5)
Why they’re bad: One of the worst offensive lines in football; Matt Hasselbeck’s injury; relying on Julius Jones as a starting RB;
Remaining games: vDET, @ARI, @MIN, @STL, vSF, @HOU, vTB, @GB, vTEN
Possible/Likely final record: anywhere from 6-10 to 3-13

St. Louis Rams (1-7)
Why they’re bad: Really bad defense; no receivers; Marc Bulger has a worse QB rating than Trent Edwards
Remaining games: vNO, vARI, vSEA, @CHI, @TEN, vHOU, @ARI, vSF
Possible/Likely final record: 2-14 or 3-13

Buffalo Bills (3-5)
Why they’re bad: Trent Edwards can’t get the ball downfield; worst run defense in football; Dick Jauron needs to go
Remaining games: @TEN, @JAX, vMIA, vNYJ, @KC, vNE, @ATL, vIND
Possible/Likely final record: 4-12 at best IMO; I think they lose 2 of those 3 unmarked road games

Cleveland Browns (1-7)
Why they’re bad: Mangini sucks; shoddy QB play; a defense that allows a league worst 401 yards per game
Remaining games: vBAL, @DET, @CIN, vSD, vPIT, @KC, vOAK, vJAX
Possible/Likely final record: 3-13 at best but likely 2-14; I see them losing at least 2 of those unmarked games

Jacksonville Jaguars (3-4)
Why they’re bad: Very little talent at WR; really bad pass defense; NFL worst 5 sacks; I like Del Rio, but I think they need a fresh start
Remaining games: vKC, @NYJ, vBUF, @SF, vHOU, vMIA, vIND, @NE, @CLE
Possible/Likely final record: 5-11 or 6-10

Tennessee Titans (1-6)
Why they’re bad: Kerry Collins is the 29th rated passer in the league, and the defense allows more yards per game than any team other than the Browns; they’re worst in the league vs. the pass
Remaining games: @SF, vBUF, @HOU, vARI, @IND, vSTL, vMIA, vSD, @SEA
Possible/Likely final record: 3-13; it will be tough for them to get to 3 wins let alone 4

Oakland Raiders (2-6)
Why they’re bad: Al Davis is still alive; JaMarcus Russell has been the worst starting QB in the league since he got his job; NFL worst 215 total offensive yards per game; piss poor run defense
Remaining games: vKC, vCIN, @DAL, @PIT, vWAS, @DEN, @CLE, vBAL
Possible/Likely final record: 3-13 or 4-12

Kansas City Chiefs (1-6)
Why they’re bad: Very little talent across the roster; big WR talent drop off after Dwayne Bowe; Larry Johnson is done; OL has allowed an NFL high 27 sacks; 3rd worst yards allowed per game on defense; equally bad against the run and the pass
Remaining games: @JAX, @OAK, vPIT, @SD, vDEN, vBUF, vCLE, @CIN, @DEN
Possible/Likely final record: 4-12

How I see them ending up (with possible 1st round draft preferences):
1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (0-16) - DT
2. Detroit Lions (2-14) - OT
3. St. Louis Rams (2-14 or 3-13) – QB
4. Cleveland Browns (3-13) – QB
5. Tennessee Titans (3-13) – QB, T, safety to pair with Michael Griffin
6. Oakland Raiders (3-13) – who the hell knows?
7. Washington Redskins (3-13) – QB, T
8. Kansas City Chiefs (4-12) – T, WR, DL, LB
9. Buffalo Bills (4-12) – DL, QB
10. Seattle Seahawks (6-10, 3-13) – T, RB
11. Jacksonville Jaguars (5-11) – DE, DB, WR, QB

Going by this list, that’s over 1/3 of the league that isn’t competitive on a weekly basis, and if my numbers turn out to be close, this will be the worst groupings of bad teams that I can recall. The records would be even worse if a lot of these teams weren’t playing each other down the stretch.
So is parity out the window, or are there just some chronically bad teams? Is it the coaching? Is it the talent in front offices? Is it the financial situations of owners? More importantly, what does Tampa Bay do to rectify the slop that is the '09 season? Do they pretend to contend once again? It ain’t pretty folks, in more cities than just Tampa.


  1. The road to defensive respectibility for our Bucs begins with N. Suh, so you can understand my mixed feelings upon seeing the team display signs of life. I feel a little better after watching the Browns last night, in that if they were to do the asswipe leapfrog over the Bucs in the 2010 draft order that they'd go QB. KC is probably set with Cassell, so they worry me (they went DL last year, and the tempatation would be to put together a Henderson-Stroud type tandem), as do the Raiders. No one in their right mind would let the J. Russell experiment continue, but Al Davis is not in his right mind, so, I could see him bypassing some of the elite QB prospects and taking either a) Suh or b) a very fast DB that was projected to go in the 4th round. That leaves Detroit and the Rams. What do they do? THEY DRAFT SUH WITHIN TWO SECONDS OF BEING ON THE CLOCK. Please offer me consoling words that we will see Mr. Suh in pewter next year.


  2. Hey TPE. I'm in the process of finishing a piece pertaining to the draft, so you'll see what I think real soon.

    I think the Titans, Raiders, and Bills would be our biggest competition for Suh, and I think it's safe to assume that the Titans and Bills both finish with a better record than the Bucs. The Raiders still play the Redskins and Browns, so they could get end up with 3 or 4 wins.