Here are some bold predictions concerning players for the 2010 NFL season:
Tony Romo will be the best statistical quarterback in the league this season. This could very well happen, and it’s definitely not the boldest prediction you’ll see in this article. The Cowboys might end up being the offense that every fan wants to get NFL tickets to see. Romo will be supported by a running game that features three good backs and has a number of weapons at his disposal through the air.
Miles Austin emerged as an elite wide receiver last season and he and Romo seem to have great chemistry, while Jason Witten is one of the premier tight ends in the league. These two targets alone would be great for any signal caller, but Romo also has Roy Williams and Dez Bryant. I wouldn’t be surprised if Romo broke the 35-TD mark this season.
Chris Johnson will not lead the league in rushing. Everyone seems to be assuming that Johnson is going to approach 2,000 yards again, including himself, but I’m not as confident. Most backs to reach 2,000 yards rushing have struggled the following year, and Johnson’s small frame doesn’t make me feel any better about that trend. I’m not sure who will lead the league on the ground, but Adrian Peterson is an obvious candidate.
Calvin Johnson will add himself to the conversation for best wide receiver in the league. Johnson is one of the most physically gifted players to ever play in the National Football League, which is saying something. He struggled with injuries in 2009, but could be poised for a huge year in 2010. Matthew Stafford is entering his second season and the team brought in a number of new weapons to take some of the attention off Johnson. The writing is on the wall.
Larry Fitzgerald will struggle with Matt Leinart under center. Now, don’t expect Fitz to disappear completely this season, but I think Leinart is going to have a tough time in 2010, which will hurt Fitzgerald’s production. He’ll still make plays for the team, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see a major statistical regression.
Shonn Greene will have a huge season. I don’t think 1,200 yards rushing and 15 touchdowns is completely out of the question for Greene in his first season as a starter. Offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer not only saw what Greene can do in the postseason last year, but he also saw how it benefitted Mark Sanchez. The Jets are going to run the ball, and behind one of the best offensive lines in the league Greene should show himself to be a star.
Chester Taylor will emerge as the best running back on the Bears. Matt Forte just didn’t look like the same back last season, and though reports this preseason are encouraging, Taylor is a better fit in Mike Martz’s offensive system. Taylor’s versatility will make him a Martz favorite from the get-go and I think he will actually see more work than Forte this season.
Ricky Williams will have one last big season. Is there any reason to believe in Ronnie Brown’s ability to stay on the field at this point? Williams showed that he still has something left in the tank and I think he’ll be looking at 1,200 yards rushing and double-digit touchdowns by the end of the season.
Pierre Garcon will show signs of taking the Colts’ number one wide receiver spot away from Reggie Wayne. Garcon was the go-to guy in the postseason last year, not Wayne; I think that speaks volumes. Sure, defenses paid more attention to Wayne, but it’s not like they could focus on him too much with so many playmakers on the Indy offense. Garcon has real potential and I think he takes a big step in his development in 2010.
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