Madden 16 - Pro 10 - NFC North Preview
JA15 - Chicago Bears
Well, looking at the Bears roster, we all must appreciate Joe's fandom as Chicago's rosters seems to be quite a maze to be subtle. First of all, it's obvious that Jay Cutler is regressing, still boosts one of the strongest arm's in the league but be honest, he is not the answer. RB Matt Forte is a dual threat from the backfield behind arguably one of the best offensive lines in recent years in Chicago. The most exciting part of the team, is no doubt the WR core. Jeffery is a stud possession receiver while rookie Kevin White will stretch the field with his blazing speed. Moving on to the defense I can see the Coach scratching his head thinking, what the hell should I do here. Jared Allen and Lamarr Houston are outside linebackers, which is ludicrous, in the Bears's new 3-4 system that doesn't really have the fitting personnel up front either. Will the Coach be forced to move back to 4-3? We shall see. The secondary also looks a bit weaker after the Bears recently cut long time CB Tim Jennings while the safeties need a bit of upgrading too. All in all, it's one of the games biggest rebuilding project that Joe took on his back with ageing ex stars of the game on most positions. Pretty tough task in a strong NFC North if you ask me.
Pats UK - Detroit Lions
I think PatsUK made good decision relocating to Detroit. They look like a solid madden project. They can compete while you can also rebuild and form them the way you want. They hold one of the most exciting offensive weaponry in the NFC with Stafford-Megatron connection, strong tight end core and solid veterans in the backfield with rookie Abdullah trying to crack the starting lineup. The defense looks to build on a strong 2014 campaign with young players fighting for stardom. Ansah is bound to have a great season with Ngata encoring the dline in the middle. The linebacking core is flawless, the two safeties are one of the best in the business and cornerback Darius Slay looks to dominate too with his blazing speed at the position. All in all, I expect PatsUK to get back to his winning ways of his Coach of the Year campaign and liberate the city of Detroit once and for all
Dr Volki - Green Bay Packers
Volki is another coach who gets to play his favourite team this season (seriously gotta be a record this year) and what a great timing for that. The offense looks ridiculous with super strong run game and arguably the games best passing attack. Led by Rodgers, best QB in the league, they shall wreak havoc in a division that not necessarily famous for it's pass defenses. We all know Cobb and Nelson are game changers but they have young talents such as Adams and Montgomery too with potential on the perimeters. Oline is fantastic and they shall provide enough time for Lacy to walk through holes, even with his somewhat questionable speed. Defense is a question mark, though not too big. Packers fans cry back the time when Matthews was an outside linebacker but he should be able to get after the quarterback from all front seven positions. Well, maybe not DT but we are still not sure how much power that hair's got. The secondary is packed with young talent as all starters should be in Green Bay for the reminder of the league. Evaluating this team's potential takes no time at all. Playoff or bust, right volki??
McManus - Minnesotta Vikings
Mcmanus must have been really happy as the Vikings fell to him on draft day. Fun team to play and rebuild, every coach's dream. Young QB, check, best RB in the business, check, solid young defensive core, check. Who wouldn't want that. The secondary overflows with potential, Rhodes and Munnerlynn are both great starters while you have rookie Waynes to take care of the slot till his time comes to be the man. Linebackers are good, not great, looking to see good things from rookie Kendricks. Safeties are among the elite with great size and speed that many covet at the position. If Kev can develop his running game to be effective, that he didn't have with the Giants last year, I expect him to seriously push the limit with this team. Not an easy division to get out on top but this team should provide enough talent to do so.
Rayski's Final Word
What a division. I seriously envy the bunch of lads who got in here and I expect cracking games from all of them through all four seasons. All serious and respected coaches in the community who dare to think big and push to be contenders. Well, maybe not with the Bears but impossible is nothing. Apparently. Hopefully. Jokes aside, this division looks awfully competitive and it is a tough task to predict anything but it's my duty now so I have to. Year One is definitely Green Bay's to lose with that offensive talent (especially oline) it's unquestionable but I expect the Vikes and the Lions fight for a Wildcard playoff birth. Bears are in tough situation. In my opinion, if they shift some ageing talent for draft picks or some young talent, in a defensive system that fits JA's style, they might be able to push to be Wildcard contenders in Year 2.
Good luck to all in the NFC North, I will surely try and follow them close this season.