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The Guys' 2015 NFL Picks Revisited

{SPORTS}

The Guys' 2015 NFL Picks Revisited

Shaun Cordingley

Unlike most of the parts the Internet who talk about sports, we are going to take ownership of our pre-season picks and prognostications, that way you can judge us according to what we say (as opposed to just judging us for fun and/or no reason). Our picks were made in the final {PODCAST} before the beginning of the season, as we do every year, and we picked division winners, and wild card teams, as well as some random questions like "surprises". 

Overall, I would say that both Dave and I were equally deluded, and in some cases, just horribly, horribly wrong. That said, we also nailed a few things, which makes us easily as accurate as everyone else out there: 

AFC EAST- Patriots 

Dave: Patriots

Shaun: Patriots  

This felt a bit like a gimme pick, because it is the Patriots, and it was hard to see anyone beating them over the course of the season for the division. Finishing at 12-4 (albeit losing 4 of their last 6 games) despite all the injuries, the Patriots rolled for another division title and gave both of us that warm, fuzzy feeling of getting a pick right.  

AFC NORTH- Bengals

Dave: Steelers  

Shaun: Steelers  

There was no way that I would not pick the Steelers, being the Steelers fan that I am, so really, Dave suffers worse here. In the end, injuries, and that young defense affected the Steelers a bit more than expected, however the Bengals really demonstrated that they were one of the most consistent and well balanced teams in the league. Now the question becomes: "can the Bengals finally show up in the playoffs, or will they crumble apart yet again?"...especially considering their wildcard matchup with the aforementioned 10 win, wildcard Steelers. 

Imagine that. The North playing itself in the playoffs. Again. 

AFC SOUTH- Texans

Dave: Colts  

Shaun: Colts 

Well this was a painfully apparent misstep as of Week 2; what a crazy misjudgment we had here with Indianapolis. There was something seriously wrong with this team from the very beginning, and this was primarily on defense (can someone say soft? How about underwhelming? Bad?), but the injury trials and tribulations of Andrew Luck did nothing to help an imbalanced and inconsistent offense. As for the Texans? Oh, we will get to them in a second, as I have some gloating to do.  

AFC WEST- Broncos

Dave: Broncos  

Shaun: Broncos  

This was a lot closer than either of us figured, especially with Kansas City's massive winning streak at the end of the year. The surprising thing to me is that Denver has won as many games as they have, largely in spite of their offense.  Neither of us saw the dramatic decline of Peyton Manning coming, and those 17 INTs to go with a spectacular record (largely maintained by some effective Brock Osweiler play) are a real surprise. However, Manning was very impressive coming in against the Chargers this last week, and we will see how the Broncos do as a #1 Seed. 

WILD CARDS-  Chiefs & Steelers

Dave: 

Bengals- obviously a solid wild card pick, essentially just needing to switch who won the north and who was the divisional wildcard. 

Chargers- I cannot speak for Dave here, but let's just say he feels really bad for anyone who listened to him. Can't predict injuries, but tough to be successful against both the Broncos and the Chiefs this year, and that young defense just did not have enough.

Shaun:  

Bills - I had bigger expectations for the Bills this season, as I liked their defense, and felt that their offense was going to be productive enough. Buffalo did really suffer with inconsistent play from their quarterbacks (injuries, of course) but it is apparent that there are some holes in the squad that Rex Ryan needs to fill

Texans- Gosh this one feels nice: that defense is just so effective, my only concern was on offense, and it sure looked like I was crazy early in the year as the quarterback carousel wanders through the season, and then finally the team I expected showed up and suddenly they won the division.  Again, having felt the Colts were a Super Bowl contender, I could not pick the Texans higher than Wild Card, and here we are. 

Worst AFC team- Titans

Dave: Titans  

Shaun: Titans  

Though tied with the perpetually awful Cleveland Browns at 3-13, the Titans are considered to be in last place, so this is a...uh....win(?) for both of us. Looking at the roster, this was not a surprise, as we all saw the Titans are just staring a full on rebuild. They'll be better with anise year, and a first overall draft pick.  

Cleveland however...  


NFC EAST- Flying Snyders  

Dave: Eagles 

Shaun: Eagles  

What a crap festival this division was all year. Chip Kelly, former coach, clearly has no idea how to be a GM, and really makes one question whether he can coach professionals, or if he should just return to the NCAA where he can run everything. Taking a roster that finished 10-6 two years in a row, and changing it into this nonsense was really a sight to see...Washington surprisingly played really well at home, and while they do not look like a real contender, totally...earned...this awful division title. 

NFC NORTH- Vikings

Dave: Packers  

Shaun: Packers  

The Packers seemed all over the place this season, never looking outright convincing, but winning a lot of games. That injury to Nelson really affected the Packers offense more than expected, and I think there has to be some changes made in the offseason in Green Bay to get more balance. The Vikings really performed well this year (more on that in a bit) so having that final, winner takes all game on the last day of the season for the North was really a good pick me up after all the odd divisional games of the rest of the day, and what a surprise to see the old school, defense first Vikings taking the division in Green Bay. Really injected some fun into the last day of the season.  

 NFC SOUTH- Panthers

Dave: Falcons  

Shaun: Saints  

Whoops. Sorry Carolina.  

Just. Yeah.  

Sorry.  

NFC WEST- Cardinals

Dave: Seahawks  

Shaun: Seahawks 

I think both Dave and I are still comfortable with this pick, and with the Seahawks comfortably moving on into the playoffs as a strong (and dangerous) wildcard team, but while I did think the Cardinals were good (as you'll see in a second), I did not think they were this good. Arizona looks legitimately dangerous too (despite the last game against Seattle), and their win in Seattle was impressive. I'm also not going to lie, and say I'm happy for the Cardinals and their fans, because I remember them being Browns level incompetent, and this is awesome football to watch. 

 WILD CARDS- Seahawks & Packers

Dave:  

Cowboys- LOL. 

Saints- Having picked the Saints in the division, I see where Dave's head was at, as it felt like a bounce back year was due, and the offense looked good...however that pass defense is just awful...injuries did not help, but there needs to be an overhaul.  

Shaun:  

Lions- I may have been drunk. Dave and I have a rule about picking for or against the Lions, in so far as we don't do it (as it always bites us in the ass), so yeah. I don't know. they were solid last season, and I did not see this giant step back coming. 

Cardinals- As I said above, I was comfortable with a very talented Cardinals team looking like a playoff team, and thankfully I stuck with it so I didn't miss both picks like somebody we know.

WORST NFC TEAM- Cowboys 

Dave: Giants  

Shaun: Flying Snyders  

We nailed the division that was going to flub it, but just did not get the right team. I was even further off than Dave, apparently picking the division winner to be the worst team in the division, but at least I didn't pick the worst team to make the playoffs. In the end, the Cowboys are still entirely reliant on one player (especially after letting their running back go in favor of three dudes who can also, kinda run). 


BIGGEST SURPRISE- 

Dave: Vikings  

I liked this pick when Dave made it, and he should be happy with it. I think we both felt that the Vikings were going to be better, but this was a really good surprise as they were a competitive and hard-nosed team all year that really turned heads, especially by winning the division. How they will fare against the red hot Seahawks remains to be seen, but the Vikings were totally a surprise this year.

Shaun: Raiders  

When I made this pick, I suggested that they would be competitive in every game they played (for the most part, check) and they would be right around .500, looking toward next year (check). I'm hoping that there's some stability in the offseason in Oakland (...or Los Angeles) and that the Raiders can build on this year to make the AFC West even more interesting next season. 

 

BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT-  

Dave: Texans  

Well now, what do we have here? Another gloating chance for Shaun! 

WHEE! DIVISION CHAMPS!  

Honestly though, Dave had a good point here, as the Texans offense was unproven and shaky at best, and they were probably one key, Watt-like injury away from fighting the Titans for worst team in the conference, but that's not what happened. 

Shaun: Bears  

I don't know if I should be counting this or not. Chicago was not good this year, at all, but did anyone expect a great year for them?  

Well, at least my disappointment was disappointing... 

There you have it folks; we were both bad at picking, and spot on this NFL season, which means we were as good as everybody else at picking the NFL season and will be fending off ESPN with a stick...

See you again next year with our sweet Buccaneers v. Raiders Super Bowl 51 predictions.  

-S (@Shauncord)