A Fan’s Guide to the NFL Pre-Season


A Fan’s Guide to the NFL Pre-Season

~ Amy Lignor



Fans… Are you ready for some football? No offense against any other sport, but the most watched is getting nearer. The camps have begun and it’s time to gear up for, what many assume, will be one of the most turbulent and exciting NFL seasons ever.


NFL Football Season, football fans, pre-season, 'first early picks' of division winnersIt is news time, shopping time, event time. If you ask the New York Giants’ fans, it is even the time to
make grandstands bend under the weight of them all who show up to nab autographs from big names. Official blogs are up and running, and, as always with this mobile world, apps can be downloaded for each team. Official websites are where to get tickets, rosters, pre-season schedules, and head to the team stores to make sure that your “Cheesehead” is brand new before Aaron gets that first ball thrown for a touchdown.


Already the “experts” out there are putting their first stamp on the season regarding the pros, cons and eventual winners. Here is one quick list to let the debates begin:


AFC East

Winner: Patriots


Bills: Can Rex Ryan do it as coach? He has all the right people to work with, but QB Mark Cassel is the one to watch. With him on target, the Bills have a shot.


Dolphins: Tannehill is the key here…the exhausted key, because his “potential” seems to be as fictional as “The Hobbit.”
Patriots: It’s important to note that every time something controversial happens, Brady, Gronk, and his guys never waver. Will they be Super Bowl bound again? Yes.


Jets: The Lombardi is as distant for this team as Oz is to everyone but Dorothy.


AFC North

Winner: Steelers


Ravens: WR Steve Smith is getting older by the minute, but one awesome season last year could definitely flow into another.


Bengals: They do have it all. Look closely; solid receivers, a defense that delivers, good running game. What don’t they have? A QB they can trust. Andy Dalton has to shine.


Browns: They broke the bank for “Johnny Football,” and the sting is not over.


Steelers: QB is ready; the defense needs to be ready too. But the Steel Curtain definitely has the best shot at taking the AFC North.

AFC South

Winner: Colts

Texans: Defensive tools will be standouts, but…QB Hoyer will (again) have to improve for his offense to make a mark.


Colts: In Indianapolis, Gore needs to run and Andy Luck needs to send it flying. With this balance, the Colts take it.


Jaguars: Let’s just say, they have surprises up their sleeves that will make fans extremely happy.


Titans: An RB must come out of the woodwork for the Titans to see a shot. Trouble is, in the running department, they are running on empty.


AFC West

Winner: Broncos


Denver Broncos: They say Coach Kubiak will bring back the toughness. Manning is still great, but less numbers will appear on the scoreboard. Even with that, the Broncos will win.


Chiefs: Throw the ball down the field – not 10 yards, not 20…DOWN the field. Until that occurs, forget it.


Raiders: Learning. This team is in “building” mode and they are doing a heck of a good job at it. No shot at the Lombardi this time around, but soon. Very, very soon.


Chargers: The defense is good, just not good enough.


NFC East

Winner: Giants


Cowboys: Never a dull moment. But will they pay for their huge losses and dumb payouts to a member who can’t even step on the field? McFadden is desperately needed to bring about a perfect season. Romo needs help.


Giants: May just own the second best offense in the NFL when all is said and done.


Eagles: The “in your face” to Dallas for stealing away the best RB in football is fun. Trouble is, they didn’t steal the best (or even second best, third, fourth, fifth, etc.) QB to go along with it.


Washington: RGIII is over. This season, fans will have to accept that.


NFC North

Winner: Packers


Bears: Jay Cutler needs to awaken or simply go home. Chances are that “waking up” is not on Cutler’s radar.

Lions: Nine wins at the very most. Suh was necessary for the defense, and the Packers retain the driver’s seat.


Packers: An offense that cannot be stopped. Rogers is on track for the Super Bowl appearance AND the win, and he is surrounded by the best go-to guys in the NFL.


Vikings: Adrian Peterson has something to prove to fans and management. Will he? Yes. Will it be good enough? No.


NFC South

Winner: Saints


Falcons: Dan Quinn HAS to fix the defense. As past Seattle defensive coordinator, he has the skill to do it. But every piece can’t be mended in one season.


Panthers: Cam Newton needs to be protected. This guy has proven he has a body as strong as Thor but, unfortunately, he is not a god.

Saints: Some say Brees will struggle; others say it’s his time. Either way, he should still be better than the rest in this division.


Buccaneers: QB Jameis Winston will be great on the field, but controversy awaits.


NFC West

Winner: Cardinals


Cardinals: Sorry Seahawks fans, the QB has the power, and the defense has the ability to shove Seattle aside.


49ers: This should be interesting. Either a rehabilitation or a full-scale destruction.


Seahawks: Graham has been added but Marshawn Lynch will still get the plays. Carroll as head coach screwed up last year, and coming back will not happen.


Rams: The offense is nonexistent and that’s one side out of two that you definitely need.


Now, fans…let the debates begin!


For movies opening October 28, 2016

  OPENING THIS WEEK Kam's Kapsules Weekly Previews That Make Choosing a Film Fun by Kam Williams For movies opening October 28, 2016 BIG BUDGET FILMS Inferno (PG-13 for action, violence, profanity, disturbing images, mature themes and brief sensuality) Third installment of The Da Vinci Code franchise finds symbologist Robert Langdon (Tom Hanks) suffering from amnesia and on the run with his physician (Felicity Jones) from a billionaire geneticist (Ben Foster) with a … [Read More its Good for You...]


Nat Turner’s Mental and Military Motivations

  Nat Turner's Mental and Military Motivations By Ezrah Aharone   Nate Parker's movie  has revived the question: What caused Nat Turner's 1831 uprising? Turner, first of all, was not a deranged misfit who acted outside of a historical context of previous African freedom fighters.  Throughout slavery's duration, resistance was not only constant and fatal, but twofold . . . Africans equally resisted both slavery and … [Read More its Good for You...]


ART EXHIBITION: 150 Years After The Civil War

  Cynthia Groya 150 Years After The Civil War: A Contemporary Perspective January 10 - March 6, 2016 Artist's Reception: Sunday, January 24, 3:00 - 5:00 pm Nassau Club 6 Mercer Street  Princeton, NJ 08540 The ideas reflected in Groya's paintings express a conversation about struggle for equal rights in our culture, in our time. The origin of this struggle can be traced to The Civil War in our country, which ended 150 years ago. The … [Read More its Good for You...]

Real Estate

Castles in America

  Castles in America by Amy Lignor   Robin Leach and his “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous” taught us all long ago that we absolutely love to sit and view ridiculous luxury (usually owned by people who inherited all of it and didn’t work a day in their lives). See that? We had to complain about something as we were beguiled by the amount of money people would send to own or create the “best of the best.” Even though some things were referred to as the “gaudiest of … [Read More its Good for You...]


It’s Not Your “Grandma’s” Pumpkin Anymore

  It’s Not Your “Grandma’s” Pumpkin Anymore by Amy Lignor   As times move forward, technology expands. However, so does the imagination. No, I’m not talking about a new cell phone or animatronic device that creates pumpkins; I’m talking about some seriously cool ways to carve pumpkins that are popping up all over the internet. Unique, awesome, colorful – people across the U.S. have used their imaginations during the 21st century to create some of the most stunning … [Read More it Good for You...]


Finally, a Boat Shoe You Can Get Wet

  Finally, a boat shoe you can get wet   By Craig Lamb   I am happiest with wet feet. For me, that means wading a shallow saltwater flat, casting for tailing redfish. Or paddling aboard my sit-on-top kayak, cruising a river in search of smallmouth bass. Not my favorite, but when the fish are biting, fishing in the rain.   Yep, I do like getting my feet wet, but it can get downright annoying when my shoes stay wet. Footing is a challenge when shoes … [Read More its Good for You...]


Saying Goodbye to Legends…

    Saying Goodbye to Legends… by Amy Lignor   When someone you admire departs the Earth, it is extremely sad to come to terms with. In the days just passed, people and fans had to deal with the departure of two men from the world of sports. Although one perhaps was not a surprise, seeing as that the gentleman lived a good, long life, the other departure was shocking. One was a legend, while the other was on the road to becoming just that.    When … [Read More its Good for You...]


The Business of “Fear” Brings in $8 Billion a Year

  The Business of “Fear” Brings in $8 Billion a Year by Amy Lignor   There are aspects of Halloween everyone knows about. From the scary boogeyman to the haunted houses set up in cities and counties from sea to shining sea, the world certainly understands that the “frightening” is also the “entertaining” when it comes to All Hallows Eve. What most may not know, however, is the fact that Halloween is a billion (yes, BILLION) dollar industry. People are more than … [Read More its Good for You...]


I Double Dare You!

  I Double Dare You! by Amy Lignor   Haunted houses, zombie-filled corn fields, small towns that like to get together and light up the night with scary-faced pumpkins – there are all different types of Halloween events and haunts you can take the kids to and have a good time. And we’ve researched and reported on the best of them. But if you’re one of those…those who like the macabre…there are places around the globe that offer far more than just a “spooky” … [Read More its Good for You...]