The 2017 NFL regular season is set to begin with the Kickoff Game on Sept. 7, but will that one game give any indication as to how the whole year will go? That game will feature the Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots taking on the Kansas City Chiefs, and if USA Today is right, those teams won’t even be close in the standings by season’s end. The media outlet has made their 2017 record projections for all 32 teams and it appears there is a clear-cut favorite to win it all.
With training camps starting up this week and all 32 teams ready to have veterans and rookies ready to report, media outlets are going to start making all their season projections. USA Today revealed their full 2017 record predictions for every single team and have their playoff teams in place.
It will be interesting to see just how many they get correct, but they certainly appear confident in their picks, and that is especially true for the New England Patriots. Yes, USA Today has the defending champions going undefeated in the regular season with a perfect 16-0 record.
For the rest of the league? Some of the picks may surprise some fans, but at least it looks like the New York Jets and San Francisco 49ers will get the first picks in the 2018 NFL Draft.
— USA TODAY Sports (@usatodaysports) July 24, 2017
As you can see, the Patriots are going to dominate the AFC, but there will be some surprise divisional winners throughout the rest of the league. The NFC appears to run part for the course with these six landing in the playoffs:
- Dallas Cowboys
- Green Bay Packers
- Atlanta Falcons
- Seattle Seahawks
- New York Giants – Wild Card
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Despite making a number of changes on both sides of the ball, the New Orleans Saints aren’t even predicted to have a sniff at the playoffs with a projected finish of 8-8. That would keep them behind the Minnesota Vikings, Arizona Cardinals, and Philadelphia Eagles who are all projected to miss the playoffs as well.
As for the worst in the NFC, that distinction goes to the San Francisco 49ers who are projected to end up with a 2-14 record in 2017.
If the projections of USA Today end up being correct, these are the six teams that will land in the playoffs from the AFC:
- New England Patriots
- Pittsburgh Steelers
- Tennessee Titans
- Oakland Raiders
- Los Angeles Chargers – Wild Card
- Baltimore Ravens
Just missing the playoffs will be the Houston Texans at 8-8 and Miami Dolphins at 7-9. The New York Jets are predicted to have the worst record in the entire NFL with just one victory and the Cleveland Browns are actually getting some credit with a projected record of 4-12.
These record projections made for the 2017 NFL regular season are simply that of USA Today and may have absolutely no reflection on how things will actually go. Yes, there is a good chance the New England Patriots will go undefeated and the Dallas Cowboys will get into the playoffs, but will the Jets only get one win? Will the Saints miss the playoffs again? Will the Titans actually dominate the AFC South? Only time will tell how this season will go, but the first kickoff is right around the corner.
[Featured Image by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images]