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Behind Enemy Lines

Thoughts on the Season

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So here it isthe real thing. Thursday night it started all over again, with the Steelers and the Titans in prime time, and for this fan it only gets better from there. If Thursday was the real thing then 4:15 today in the New Jersey Swamp will be even better than the real thing (apologies to U2I just like the phrase).

Today we start to answer the questions, find out about the future and get a glimpse behind the curtain that came down over Redskins Park after the lose to the 49ers last year.

Will Jason Campbell improve again this year and become a QB to be feared by defenses in this league? I think so.

Will the offensive line provide the protection necessary? Yes, to at least start the season. By Week 10well, we will wait for Week 10 to discuss that.

Will Big Al be worth that big paycheck? Im pretty sure we saw the answer to that in the Pats game. If you have any questions, you might try asking Tom Brady.

Will the Skins finally get consistent big play out of a top draft pick early with Brian Orakpo? Again, I think so but even though what we have seen in the preseason is encouraging, we all know the regular season is a whole new game. No doubt every Offensive Coordinator on the schedule for the next 4 weeks has a surprise in store for Mr. Orakpo. I expect them to go at him early and often, at least until he proves that he is the next Defensive Rookie of the Year.

And thats just 4 questions of many. We have not yet touched on Zorn, Kelly, Davis, Thomas, Special Teams or a whole host of others.

So what does the season hold for the Skins in the mind of this fan?

I will spare you the drama and say up front that I think this team ends with a winning record and a trip to the playoffs. Part of that has to do with a weak schedule (how can any schedule with the AFC West on it be anything but weak?) and part of that is my belief that both the offense and defense will be better than last year.

First, the schedule

This team finished in last place in the NFC East but would have been tied for first in the AFC West and finished just a game out of first in the NFC West. As a consequence it gets a last place schedule. It has the usual 6 games with the Giants, Eagles and Cowboys, 4 games each with the NFC South and AFC West and games with the last place teams of the NFC North and West (Lions and Rams, respectively).

- First, NFC East I see no worse than a 3-3 record here and perhaps as good as 4-2. I think the team sweeps the Eagles again (their defense looks seriously suspect and the offensive line isnt much better in my mind) and a split with the Cowboys. That just leaves the question of whether they can pull one out over the Giant.
- Second, AFC West Easily the worst division in the NFL and to make things even better for the Skins they get the best team, the Chargers, for the very last game of the season. By then, the Chargers should have the division title sowed up and rest some key guys. The Skins should win these 4 games but wont. Every year they drop at least one game to some team they shouldnt so figure 3-1 here.
- Third, NFC South I think this is the most over rated division in the NFL. Not bad, just over rated. As a bold prediction in BDs thread I said the Skins sweep the NFC South. Not sure I buy that as much now but I said it in print so I will stick with it.
- Fourth, last place NFC teams If they cant beat the Rams and Lions

So12-4.

That is what I call a bold prediction. 10-6 is much more realistic but with this schedule, if this team plays better than last year on both sides of the ball as most seem to think they will, I have a tough time finding 6 losses.

Of course, that is why I am professional geek and not making a living in Vegas as a handicapper.

I think both Zorn and Campbell are back next year but then I want them to be back so I might be projecting a record that will achieve that goal.

I think Orakpo leads the D in sacks this year and the D sets a new team record for sacks in a season.

I think Kelly leads the team in catches and in receiving TDs.

So there it isIm on record and fully prepared to be right or wrong.

Hail the start of games that are games and mean something!

Updated 09-13-09 at 04:13 PM by Neophyte

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