AFC

Denver Broncos 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Broncos betting on Case Keenum
Denver Broncos 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

In quiet moments of reflection, Broncos defensive end Derek Wolfe wondered how it all happened. How did a team that won Super Bowl 50 match its longest losing streak in 50 years and sink into the AFC West basement? “It was miserable. We have to get our confidence back and move forward,” Wolfe says.

 

Oakland Raiders 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Second Gruden era set to begin in Oakland
Oakland Raiders 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

The Raiders have generated plenty of buzz for a team that followed its first trip to the playoffs since 2002 with a disastrous 6-10 faceplant last season. All it took was for owner Mark Davis to convince Jon Gruden to leave the Monday Night Football broadcast booth and return to Oakland for a second stint as Raiders coach. Gruden signed a 10-year, $100 million contract to replace Jack Del Rio, whose reign in Oakland ended after three seasons.

 

Kansas City Chiefs 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Chiefs have a playoff roster... and an unproven quarterback
Kansas City Chiefs 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

The Patrick Mahomes era officially started March 14 when the 2018 league year started and the Chiefs sent quarterback Alex Smith to Washington in exchange for cornerback Kendall Fuller and a 2018 third-round pick.

 

Los Angeles Chargers 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Strong finish leads to big expectations in L.A.
Los Angeles Chargers 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

The Chargers’ self-proclaimed “Fight for LA” might be a lost cause, at least for the time being, because the Rams have proven to be much more popular in Los Angeles. After all, they made the playoffs last season while the Chargers didn’t. However, there appears to be legitimate hope for the Bolts after they painfully missed the playoffs by one game last year, their first after moving north from San Diego.

 

Indianapolis Colts 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Even if Andrew Luck is healthy, Colts need work
Indianapolis Colts 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

He knew his first season as the Colts general manager would be a challenge, but Chris Ballard loathed what he saw with alarming frequency from his 4-12 team last year. Granted, a roster lacking in talent and depth was dramatically impacted by cornerstone quarterback Andrew Luck not taking a single snap due to shoulder surgery. But what resonated with Ballard was how often his Colts weren’t tough enough in the trenches.

 

Houston Texans 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Healthy stars will be key for Texans
Houston Texans 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

In Brian Gaine’s first offseason as GM, he signed nine free agents and added eight draft choices to a team that was destroyed by injuries in coach Bill O’Brien’s fourth season. Twenty players, including 13 starters, were placed on injured reserve, including rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson. The result was a 4-12 record -- O’Brien’s first losing season -- and a demotion to the AFC South basement after back-to-back titles.

 

Tennessee Titans 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

New coach, but playoff core remains
Tennessee Titans 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

The 20th season of the Tennessee Titans will be celebrated with a rebranding. The Titans will don new helmets and uniforms on the field and welcome first-year head coach Mike Vrabel on the sideline. Vrabel, 42, was an NFL linebacker from 1997-2010, winning three Super Bowls with the New England Patriots before coaching under Urban Meyer at Ohio State and Bill Belichick disciple Bill O’Brien with the Houston Texans, most recently serving as defensive coordinator in 2017.

 

Jacksonville Jaguars 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Expectations rise for young Jags
Jacksonville Jaguars 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Now comes the tough part for the Jaguars: prosperity and expectations. That is the new territory for the previously downtrodden franchise. Following a decade filled with coaching and front-office changes, quarterback instability and, most of all, losing, the Jaguars improved last year by seven wins and reached the AFC Championship Game. All of which meant nothing this spring when coach Doug Marrone addressed his players. Every team has the same record. Every team is starting over. Last year’s foundation must be built upon, not admired.

 

Cleveland Browns 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Nowhere to go but up for Browns
Cleveland Browns 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

The Browns bottomed out last season, following up a 1-15 season by going winless. They kept Hue Jackson as head coach but put John Dorsey in charge of personnel last December, and there will be greater than 50 percent roster turnover by the time the season begins.

 

Pittsburgh Steelers 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

New season, same faces in Steel City
Pittsburgh Steelers 2018 Team Preview and Prediction

Pittsburgh was too good, too electric on offense, too experienced where it matters, to have its 2017 season end prematurely at the hands up the upstart Jaguars in the AFC divisional round. Their long-anticipated rematch with the Patriots never materialized, and the Steelers were sent into an offseason with plenty to mull. Months later, the roster is barely changed, and neither have the expectations. There’s no telling how much longer their vaunted triple-B trio will be together, but the Steelers expect to be nothing less than Super Bowl contenders in 2018.

 

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