The league captain wants to have access to the playoffs in the NFL. During 2019, only six out of 16 teams participated in every conference on the field, and this gave NFL Interval participation rate is lower than two peer leagues (NHL and NBA) with retention prior to Major League Baseball. So in 2020, the NFL Added a seventh playoff team per conference, which not only created more playoffs but also kept more teams in the race until later in the year. This had a snowball effect in creating more important competitions in the regular season as well.
In theory, the change should also result in fewer teams experiencing long dry spells between appearances in the NFL playoffs. Right now, eight teams – the league quarter – are mired in a slump of four seasons or longer without a play-off coming up. The New York Jets are suffering from a 10-year drought. The Arizona Cardinals and the Cincinnati Bengals missed the postseason five years in a row. The Las Vegas Raiders, Miami Dolphins, New York Giants and Detroit Lions are all sitting in a four-year absence from the playoffs.
Which of those slips has the best chance of ending in 2021? And which one might last longer? Here’s a closer look at these teams and an assessment of how optimistic their fans are.
It doesn’t look good
These teams should remain among the worst in the league, at least for 2021. They’re staring at lengthy rebuilds and/or don’t have the chops to compete just yet.
New York Giants: Quarterback Daniel Jones It was a strange choice When the Giants took him seventh in the 2019 draft, it doesn’t look any better now that Jones has played for two years and He finished 34th in the league In yards adjusted pass per attempt during that time period. He is unlikely to bring the giants back into the competition. Although the team He had a nice 2021 projectThey won’t get to the real level until someone better than Jones throws the ball.
Detroit Lions: The Lions are your best bet to be the worst team in the NFL this year. After failing to win with talented quarterback Matthew Stafford, the organization mercifully traded him with the Los Angeles Rams due to underachievement and Jared Goff’s limitations. Being so bad for so long has allowed the Lions to add some top-class talent in recent drafts, including offensive tackle Penny Sewell this spring. But as with the Giants, things won’t really bounce back until someone else plays QB – or at least until they surround Geoff with as much talent as the Rams did. You can do the NFL playoffs with Goff, but that takes a lot of effort from everyone on the roster.
Hang a little a little longer
New York Jets: There is some hope on the horizon for the team with the longest post-season drought in the league. Jets BYU QB Zach Wilson drafted seventh overall in April, and there’s a good chance he’ll be the guy that will bring the team back to the NFL playoffs (eventually). He also has some talented receivers at his disposal, and left-footed Mekhi Becton is the star of the present and future.
But the Jets’ defense, especially in high school, will have a lot of trouble stopping other teams. Eliminate some of the anticipated growing pains for Wilson, and the Jets still likely will be really bad this year. But at least it should be fun to watch, and better days will come.
Cincinnati Bengals: Some pieces are in place for Cincinnati. QB Joe Burrow, top pick in the 2020 draft, must take positive steps as long as he recovers from He suffered an ACL tear and other knee damage late last season. Burrow also has three high-ranking receivers in veteran Tyler Boyd, sophomore T. Higgins, and former Burrow’s LSU teammate Ja’Marr Chase.
So why lower expectations? For one thing, it’s the offensive line Probably well below average. On the other hand, the defense suffered last year and then lost arrogant Carl Lawson in free agency. The Bengals may need a little more time before a playoff.
Denver Broncos: Broncos does not have a suitable QB. The 2019 second-round pick Drew Lock was arguably the worst QB in the NFL in 2020, especially if you look at the numbers. Advanced stats like estimated points added for each game and completion percentage on prediction (you can find these stats over here) Draw a clear picture of the lock: it doesn’t amount to snuff.
But the Broncos are not hopeless: their defense must be very strong. They have one of the league’s best players in Bryce Callahan, and their key player, outside full-back Von Miller, will return this year after. Missed the year 2020 With dislocated ankle tendon.
Las Vegas Raiders: The Raiders’ offensive line probably isn’t that great, but other than that, there’s a lot to like about Jon Gruden’s team. QB Derek Carr is not a world class player, but he is one of the best passers in the league. Other offensive highlights include two talented riders, one of the league’s best tight ends in Darren Waller, and a sexy sneaky reception leg led by Henry Rogers III in the first round of 2020.
The defense should get helpful passing assist from free agent Yannick Njakwe, and the defensive front has a few other great talents, including Maxx Crosby and Clelin Ferell. If the high school holds up — which it might, especially if safety rookie Tryvon Mohrig plays well — Vegas could make the playoffs.
It’s time to compete now
Miami Dolphins: Dolphins have one of the best passing defenses in professional football, highlighted by the impressive backstroke duo of Xavien Howard and Byron Jones. Howard might be on his way out, but the secondary player still has enough chops to defend the pass well. Their linebackers and linebackers need to improve a lot, and they might, because some of the injured players will return to those positions, and the Dolphins forged a strong momentum in Gillan Phillips, who played last season at the University of Miami.
But much of Miami’s success or failure is due to Tua Tagovailoa, the former Alabama star who struggled as a freshman QB in 2020. If Tagovailoa brings them together, the Dolphins should make the NFL playoffs. If he doesn’t, they won’t, and coach Brian Flores will have to make another choice.
Arizona Cardinals: QB Kyler Murray, the 2019 draft’s first overall pick, has gotten a little better in his second year on the job at Just for every statistic category. He even made the Pro Bowl. But he hasn’t had a breakthrough season yet to establish himself as one of the best QBs in the league, and if one of them is coming, it should happen now. It’s Murray’s third year under head coach Cliff Kingsbury and his second year with the NFL’s top receiver, Deandre Hopkins.
It’s also time for the Cardinals to rise in defense. In the past two years, they’ve drafted two of the most versatile linebackers ever to enter the league—Isiah Simmons of Clemson and Zaven Collins of Tulsa. If they’re good, and if new defensive lineman JJ Watt plays anything like his old self, defense should give Murray some margin of error.
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