National Football League 2017 Season Preview

NFL fans are now playing the waiting game, with the new season set for the 7th of September.

The 2016 season was exciting as ever, with plenty of close games and an incredible finish at Super Bowl LI. The season also had plenty of drama, with ‘Deflategate’ and national anthem protests grabbing the headlines.

Now is as good a time as any to make some bold predictions on what will happen in the 2017/2018 season based on the back end of the 2017 season, all the odds can be found at 888.com. There were plenty of surprises too. For the first time since 2003, neither team from 2015’s Superbowl final made it to the playoffs. The Denver Broncos had the best defense, they didn’t make it to the playoffs, whereas the Detroit Lions did, despite having the worst. There was also a major relocation for the first time in almost 20 years, with the St. Louis Rams moving back to Los Angeles.

The New England Patriots dominated the season again, going 14-2 during the regular season. Veteran Tom Brady was undoubtedly the dynamo for the team, throwing 28 touchdowns and gaining 3,554 passing yards despite spending the first four games off the field due to his ‘Deflategate’ suspension. The 40-year-old seems to be defying the aging process and it will be interesting to see if he can maintain his form next year.

Based on their record this year, the Patriots should be there or thereabouts in 2017. They have won more than 10 games for 14 seasons in a row now and any deviance from this consistency will be highly unlikely. Key breakout players from the season Julian Edelman and LeGarrette Blount may be a year older, but with their touchdown records from this season it’s easy to see why the Patriots are likely to be favourites for both a divisional win and a Superbowl appearance.

Atlanta also had a great season, winning the NFC south with only five defeats and booking themselves into the Super Bowl LI thanks to a second seed in the NFC playoffs. Next year will be crucial for them, with some great competition snapping at their heels and the shadow of lost form hovering over them as it did for the Panthers, Broncos, Cardinals and Bengals this year.

Ones to watch are 2015 Super Bowl L winners the Denver Broncos, they will want to put their poor season this year behind them, along with fellow finalists the Carolina Panthers, who also failed to make the playoffs. NFC North and West favourites the Green Bay Packers and Seattle Seahawks could also be in the mix, but it seems that all eyes are on the South and East when it comes to divisional and Super Bowl odds.

The summer will undoubtedly see further changes and other outcomes which will affect the overall odds for each of the favourites. There is always the chance of an underdog making it through to the playoffs and there is of course the drama and controversies that undeniably change player’s and team’s seasons.

AFI
American Football International is your source for news and updates about American Football outside the United States!
Skip to toolbar