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Preseason Week 1: State of the NFC South

How will the NFC South fair this season?

NFL: New Orleans Saints Training Camp Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The NFC South is one of the most interesting divisions in all of football. While it may not be the best in terms of play, it has a ton of exciting storylines this upcoming season. Today we’re going to discuss the NFC South and what you can expect from each team.

Carolina Panthers: Record prediction 7-10

The Carolina Panthers took Alabama QB Bryce Young with the first pick in this year’s NFL Draft. The team revamped its offense by signing Adam Thielen, D.J. Chark, and Miles Sanders. The team lost star WR D.J. Moore in a trade with the Chicago Bears, which allowed them to select Bryce Young.

The Panthers have some talent on the defensive side of the ball. With the likes of Jaycee Horn, Bruan Burns, and Derrick Brown, this could be a sneaky good defense. The Panthers success will all depend on how quickly Bryce Young adapts to NFL football. I believe Young has a lot of talent, but the lack of offensive line and playmakers may result in him struggling to start the season. The Panthers should be a competitive team but not anything too crazy.

Atlanta Falcons: Record prediction 8-9

I think The Atlanta Falcons will be a sneaky team this upcoming season. The team made a ton of moves in free agency signing Jesse Bates, Eddie Goldman, Calais Campbell, and Mack Hollins. They also snagged two big pieces from the Saints defense in David Onyemata and Kaden Ellis.

The Falcons biggest move of the offseason was drafting HB Bijan Robinson. The former Texas Longhorn is thought to be the next elite HB. The Falcons had a strong rushing attack last year with Tyler Allgeir. They could have one of the best rushing attacks in the league with Robinson and Allgeir.

The big question mark with Atlanta is second year QB Desmond Ridder. To be quite frank, this writer isn’t expecting much for Ridder. The Falcons will likely replace him in next year’s loaded QB class. The Falcons will win games based on their excellent ground-and-pound attack and defense.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Record prediction 4-13

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will not be good. After QB Tom Brady retired, they failed to land a long-term option at QB and signed Baker Mayfield. The former Number one overall pick is currently in a QB battle with former University of Florida QB Kyle Trask. Both of these QBs are near the bottom of the league.

The team will likely compete in some games due to their talented defense. The Bucs still have one of the best LB duos in football in Devin White and Lavontae David. They also have a solid WR duo in Mike Evans and Chris Godwin. Overall, I just don’t trust the QB situation or HC Todd Bowels to win games.

New Orleans Saints: Record prediction 10-7

I know this prediction will upset some fans but hear me out. The Saints are a solid team, but not without its question marks. The team has a lot of new pieces, and while I expect good things, I’m rather cautiously optimistic.

The Saints have some great playmakers on both sides of the ball. I expect huge things out of Chris Olave, and Rashid Shaheed should have a solid year two. My biggest concern on the offensive line is Andrus Peat and that guard spot. Peat has been underwhelming since signing his extension and has had his issue with injuries. If Peat goes down the team will have to rely on its guard depth, and that is a scary situation.

My other fear for the Saints is their pass-rushing ability. Last year the team couldn’t get any pressure on opposing QBs. The team has a new, revamped defensive line. Will it pan out? I’m not totally sure.

Now on to the positives; the Saints may have one of the most underrated rushing attacks in football. I have very high hopes for Alvin Kamara, Jamaal Williams, and Kendre Miller. To go along with this the Saints may have one of the best LB duos in football. Demario Davis and Pete Werner should be a force to be reckoned with this season. The team has a top-ten CB in football with Marshon Lattimore. Overall, the team has a lot of talent and should be competitive all season long. If everything goes right, I could see us winning twelve games, but for now, I’ll remain with my ten-win prediction.

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