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2020 NFL Predictions: A Way Too Early Look at All 32 Franchises’ End of Season Records

The recent release of the 2020 NFL schedule means one thing and one thing only for most and that is that the football season is getting closer by the day.

Missing the NFL campaign during the off-season is nothing new for most but due to COVID19 and the lack of other sports entertainment, we all seem to have been missing it just that little more than usual.

Luckily for us fans, this off-season has been one of the most exciting to date. We have already witnessed an excellent virtual draft filled with no end of talent and been treated to some huge unthinkable trades across the board.

It has been busy to say the least and there are still a lot of moves to be made between now and September, like, who the hell is going to take Cam Newton?

But, with all that said, it isn’t going to stop me writing a way too early win total prediction list. @UK_Pigskin if you want to direct your anger anywhere after dissecting this.

AFC North

Baltimore Ravens (2019 Record: 13-3)

2020 Prediction: 12-4

The Ravens were outstanding in 2019 and performing to anywhere near that level will prove extremely hard to replicate.

However, having said that, Baltimore had what looked to be a very exciting draft and will be keen to improve on last year’s failed play-off run.

Cleveland Browns (2019 Record 6-10)

2020 Prediction: 11-5

Cleveland Browns were one of the disappointments of the last campaign. An off-season that promised so much turned into a year that delivered little and for that, Freddie Kitchens was shown the door in January.

It is now Kevin Stefanski’s turn to take the reins and 11-5 may seem generous but they certainly have the fire power to pull it off.

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Pittsburgh Steelers (2019 Record: 8-8)

2020 Prediction: 11-5

The Steelers’ 2019 season was plagued with injuries from the minute Ben Roethlisberger hobbled off in week three and it was pretty much a null season from then on.

Defensively, Pittsburgh were extremely sound though and if Big Ben can stay healthy all year – expect a bounce back season from Mike Tomlin’s side.

Cincinnati Bengals (2019 Record: 2-14)

2020 Prediction: 6-10

Despite holding the worst record last season, the Bengals showed glimpses of promise with their young side in 2019 and things can only be looking up with the arrival of Joe Burrow at quarterback.

A tough division won’t help their record but we should definitely see an improvement in Cincinnati come September.

AFC South

Tennessee Titans (2019 Record: 9-7)

2020 Prediction: 9-7

The Tennessee Titans were one of the pleasant surprises of 2019. Ryan Tannehill’s rebirth and Derrick Henry’s monster season the main factor in them not only reaching the play-offs but knocking off the favourites in Baltimore Ravens.

Expect the Titans to leap-frog divisional rivals Houston Texans next year.

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Houston Texans (2019 Record: 10-6)

2020 Prediction: 8-8

It’s hard to put into a short paragraph the on-goings down in Houston under the leadership of Bill O’Brien.

Replacing DeAndre Hopkins with an injury prone Brandin Cooks one of many off-season moves that should work against the Texans.

Indianapolis Colts (2019 Record: 7-9)

2020 Prediction: 6-10

If there’s anything going to flip in this division it is looking likely to be the Texans and the Colts.

Indianapolis have added the experience of Philip Rivers at quarterback but with the addition of his experience, he leaves behind his best years in San Diego and Los Angeles respectively. There are some solid players within the franchise but it looks as though it’s going to be a tough season for Frank Reich’s side.

Jacksonville Jaguars (2019 Record: 6-10)

2020 Prediction: 4-12

Many people’s early favourites for the number one overall pick in the 2021 NFL draft, it is looking likely that coming season is a write off before it has begun.

The Jaguars are lacking quality and depth in all areas of the field but that may well be the price they are willing to pay for a season if it means picking up Trevor Lawrence in April 2021.

And, on the bright-side, at least their schedule release video is the best in the NFL.

AFC East

Buffalo Bills (2019 Record: 10-6)

2020 Prediction: 8-8

The AFC East has all the ingredients to be an extremely intriguing division heading into 2020 and I see Buffalo Bills managing to go one better and taking the top spot next year.

On the whole their roster is actually a much stronger one but sadly for them and luckily for the neutral, the AFC East is also looking much stronger.

Miami Dolphins (2019 Record: 5-11)

2020 Prediction: 7-9

After trading away their entire roster in 2019 and acquiring 127 draft picks along the way, the Miami Dolphins are bound to look like a completely new outfit in 2020.

2020 looks to be more of an embedding year with the goal to kick on into 2021. The future certainly looks bright in Miami.

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New York Jets (2019 Record: 7-9)

2020 Prediction: 6-10

The Jets blew hot and cold throughout near the entirety of 2019 and despite having a solid post season draft, nothing suggests to me that that will change with an extremely tough looking 2020 schedule.

New England Patriots (2019 Record: 12-4)

2020 Prediction: 5-11

It almost feels too wrong to even write and I am furiously second guessing myself every time I look at this prediction.

The truth is that this Patriots side will intimidate next to nobody heading into 2020 and that is half of the battle won for most.

Would it surprise anyone to see Bill Belichick lead the six time Super Bowl champions to a positive record? Probably not. But it will be some achievement if he does.

AFC WEST

Kansas City Chiefs (2019 Record: 12-4)

2020 Prediction: 11-5

The Super Bowl champions will go into next year with many believing that they are capable of the same feat.

Andy Reid added running-back Clyde Edwards-Helaire in an absolute steal of a pick at number 32 to bolster their already electrifying offense. Whether they can win back-to-back Super Bowls is yet to be seen but the AFC West looks a certain once more.

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Los Angeles Chargers (2019 Record: 5-11)

2020 Prediction: 9-7

Los Angeles Chargers have been a nearly team for far too long now and 2020 looks to be finally the year that they break that hoodoo and cement a play-off berth.

Chris Harris Jr. is a solid pick-up and the addition of quarterback Justin Herbert brings with it a new era in LA.

Denver Broncos (2019 Record: 7-9)

2020 Prediction: 6-10

The Denver Broncos have an extremely exciting looking offense on paper heading into 2020 but there are still question marks surrounding the defensive side of things.

A lot of Denver’s games may well come down to who can outscore who which is excellent for the neutral but with a tough looking schedule it begs the question of just how often that is possible.

Las Vegas Raiders (2019 Record: 7-9)

2020 Prediction: 6-10

Aside from the fact it still seems bizarre writing Las Vegas Raiders instead of Oakland Raiders, nothing much looks to have changed on the pitch.

The addition of Cory Littleton looks a good one defensively and the ever-exciting Josh Jacobs will only improve but unfortunately for the Raiders, they now sit in one of the best divisions in the AFC and 2020 will be a tough one in their new home.

NFC North

Green Bay Packers (2019 Record: 13-3)

2020 Prediction: 11-5

A very impressive 13-3 record in 2019 for the Packers is one that surprised many and will certainly be a difficult one to replicate.

With the controversial selection of Jordan Love in the first round of the draft, don’t be surprised if it puts a chip on Aaron Rodgers to exceed expectations once more.

Listen to what The Athletic’s Ryan Conway thinks of the Packers chances in 2020 in this interview here.

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Minnesota Vikings (2019 Record: 10-6)

2020 Prediction: 9-7

Despite the first round pick-up of the impressive looking wide-receiver that is Justin Jefferson, the Vikings still have a huge void left in their ranks after the departure of Stefon Diggs.

The Minnesota roster is arguably better than that of the Green Bay Packers but it’s hard to bet against Aaron Rodgers in this divisional race.

Chicago Bears (2019 Record: 8-8)

2020 Prediction: 5-11

Nick Foles has been brought in to more than likely take up the QB1 role after the Bears declined Mitch Trubisky’s fifth-year option and when Foles is the most exciting player on your offense you know you’ve got some issues.

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Detroit Lions (2019 Record: 3-12-1)

2020 Prediction: 5-11

Despite a pretty impressive looking off-season, it will be difficult for the Lions to add many wins to their 2019 total and that’s with the prediction that Matthew Stafford stays healthy.

There has no doubt been significant improvement in Detroit but the play-off charge looks to still be a year or two away.

NFC South

New Orleans Saints (2019 Record: 13-3)

2020 Prediction: 12-4

There are a few things that are certainties in life. Death, taxes and New Orleans Saints winning the NFC South.

The NFC South has seen significant improvement this off-season but it shouldn’t be enough to stop the Saints marching towards yet another divisional crown.

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Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2019 Record: 7-9)

2020 Prediction: 10-6

It’s been a quiet off season in Tampa Bay, hasn’t it?

Aside from an evident significant improvement within this franchise, expect far less pick-sixes over the course of 2020.

Atlanta Falcons (2019 Record: 7-9)

2020 Prediction: 9-7

Positives and negatives going into 2020 for the Atlanta Falcons. The positives being that they have certainly improved, negatives being so have their divisional rivals.

The introduction of Todd Gurley has the potential to be a great one. Gurley will have a chip on his shoulder after being cut by the Los Angeles Rams and a fired up running-back will only work in favour for Atlanta, provided he stays healthy.

Carolina Panthers (2019 Record: 5-11)

2020 Prediction: 5-11

There looks to be no end to the negative records in Carolina which is a shame when you have a stud like Christian McCaffrey in your back-field.

The additions from the 2020 draft combined with the arrival of Teddy Bridgewater and PJ Walker in the quarterback department are positive ones but they still look a way off the rest of the pack.

NFC East

Dallas Cowboys (2019 Record: 8-8)

2020 Prediction: 10-6

The uncertainty surrounding the future of Dak Prescott with Dallas shouldn’t be enough to stop the Cowboys reclaiming their spot on top of the NFC East.

With the experienced Mike McCarthy now at the helm and some exciting off-season additions both on the player and coaching front, ‘America’s Team’ will provide a real threat next season.

Philadelphia Eagles (2019 Record: 9-7)

2020 Prediction: 7-9

The Philadelphia Eagles spent 2019 plagued with injuries and it was a credit to themselves that they managed to grab a play-off spot.

Having said that, their division was arguably the worst in football and a lot of their success in 2020 will come down to whether or not Carson Wentz can stay healthy. Something that has proved to be nothing but a fantasy in recent years.

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New York Giants (2019 Record: 4-12)

2020 Prediction: 6-10

2019 was always going to be a slog the second explosive running-back Saquon Barkley went down injured against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in week 3.

The Giants are still very much in a transition phase heading into next season but with a fit Barkley and another year behind Daniel Jones, we should see a definite improvement in New York.

Washington Redskins (2019 Record: 3-13)

2020 Prediction: 3-13

Don’t shoot the predictor.

Ron Rivera has a huge task on his hands to improve the fortunes of a Washington franchise in turmoil and that is going to take a lot more than just one off-season to turn things around.

NFC West

San Francisco 49ers (2019 Record: 13-3)

2020 Prediction: 12-4

An outstanding year for the 49ers in 2019 saw them come up one short when they lost to the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl 54.

Offensively, losing Matt Breida and Emmanuel Sanders will be a loss but with arguably still one of the best defensive lines in the NFL, they should give it another real go.

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Los Angeles Rams (2019 Record: 9-7)

2020 Prediction: 11-5

The Los Angeles Rams had the classic post Super Bowl syndrome year in 2019 after their humiliating touchdown-less game with the New England Patriots the season prior.

Despite being distinctively average for the majority of the campaign, the Rams lost numerous games by a Field-Goal or less and Sean McVay will take promise from this.

McVay has a lot to prove in 2020 and that can work in favour of the Rams.

Seattle Seahawks (2019 Record: 11-5)

2020 Prediction: 8-8

Seattle were good but not great in 2019 and relied on a lot of Russell Wilson magic to get them through on numerous occasions.

With Jadeveon Clowney still clowning around the Seahawks could lose a vital part of their defence and in turn, will just miss out on a play-off spot in an improved division.

Arizona Cardinals (2019 Record: 5-10)

2020 Prediction: 8-8

The most notable improvements in not only the NFC West but in the entire NFL look to fall at the feet of the Arizona Cardinals.

Giving Kyle Murray more protection was vital this off-season and they look to have addressed this with multiple picks in the draft.

Isaiah Simmons at number eight was a steal and the addition of DeAndre Hopkins would excite any team. This could be the start of something great in Arizona.

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Have we over-estimated or vastly underestimated your team? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @UK_Pigskin