Since we’re hoping the mashup that is the AFC North begins to sort itself out this weekend, it might be prudent to check the latest news, injury reports, and tidbits to see what to reasonably expect.
Because most of our predictions have gone horribly awry, it’s starting to seem pointless to offer any suggestions or infer that any team is capable of moving up in the standings. Therefore, I’ll hand you some links to see how foolish some other prognosticators look…
Punter Sam Koch has been invaluable this season.
My Take: The Ravens have always heavily relied on defensive field position to create pressure, and Koch has been an integral part of that this season. He may have a Pro Bowl berth in the near future.
Tight end Gary Barnidge has been a real asset this season, excluding his diva-dating history.
My Take: Given starter Jordan Cameron’s injury struggles, the Browns should feel fortunate to have a solid option like Barnidge on the depth chart. If they capture the division, he’ll be a big reason why.
Examining the upcoming matchup of Saints tight end Jimmy Graham v. the Bengals’ defense.
My Take: As undermanned as they are, I can’t see the Bengals limiting Graham’s production. Pressuring quarterback Drew Brees is the only solution they realistically should entertain.
The Steelers’ secondary is in flux.
My Take: I don’t expect that (Titans quarterback) Zach Mettenberger to offer much of a test for the Steelers, who will undoubtedly apply as much pressure to the rookie as possible. The secondary should have an easy day.