Each NFL team has played two games so far, and you know what that means:
Time to freak the fuck out!
Just kidding. But though it’s too early to make any definitive judgments about each team, and some teams that look good now will eventually be not-so-good, and some that look bad will eventually be not-so-bad, we can be pretty certain of this: The Steelers, Browns, Jaguars and Bucs look terrible so far.
Sure, there are other 0-2 teams in the league besides those four, but somehow we’re not as worried about the Giants, Redskins, Vikings and Panthers. They might not make the playoffs either, but they don’t appear as laughably bad as our first/bottom four, and could even turn things around entirely. From what we’ve seen of the AFC North’s cellar and the two teams from Florida that aren’t Miami, 2013 is going to be rough.
Popular opinion around the league right now is that the Jaguars suck worse than anything ever assembled, and they could be facing an historically big spread against the Seahawks this week. But it’s a long season, and there’s plenty of time for any of these sad franchises to win the Jadeveon Clowney sweepstakes.
Which team is worst? Let’s start at the “top.”
How do they look so far?: Worse than expected. This year was already going to be an uphill battle against the rising Bengals and defending champion Ravens, but injuries to the offensive line, running back and linebacker positions have derailed hopes of seriously competing. The plan appears to be to let Ben Roethlisberger carry this team to some wins, but Big Ben hasn’t looked good throwing the deep ball this year and thus all hope is essentially lost.
How do things look going forward?: Not bad. Their strength of schedule before the season was only 22nd in the league, but they’ll face surprise teams like the Bears and Dolphins. Then again, they haven’t even played the Browns yet.
How does our Pretty Much Screwed prediction look?: 7-9 seems bold at this point. If the Steelers got to six wins, that’d be a surprise.
How do they look so far?: Slightly worse than expected. This is a team that was expected to take a step forward this year behind Trent Richardson and a stout defense. But the poor play of, and injuries to, 99-year-old second-year quarterback Brandon Weeden has already forced a change to Brian Hoyer, who isn’t going to strike fear in the hearts of men, or even small dogs.
How do things look going forward?: Like the Steelers, the Browns had a relatively week SOS, but they’ll play a few upstarts like the Bears and Chiefs. There are a few gimmes in there still, however, and we still have high expectations for that defense and run game.
How does our Pretty Much Screwed prediction look?: Again, 7-9 was a bold choice. 6-10 is still possible, but it’ll be considered a win for the season.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
How do they look so far?: On the field, the Bucs are who we thought they were. Off the field, they’re a god damn mess. Greg Schiano probably won’t finish out the season, and he might be taking Josh Freeman with him.
How do things look going forward?: There are only two games this season that I would feel confident in picking the Bucs to win (Cards, Rams), and they might steal one from the Panthers. Beyond that, no faith in this crew at all, especially if they keep throwing away sure wins with boneheaded plays.
How do they look so far?: OH MY GOD.
How do things look going forward?: OH JESUS THEY PLAY THE 49ERS, BRONCOS, TEXANS TWICE, COLTS TWICE AND THE CHARGERS?
How does our Pretty Much Screwed prediction look?: I CAN’T BELIEVE WE SAID THEY WOULD WIN THREE GAMES, THAT’S INSANE. That’ll be 1-15 and Mr. Clowney, please.
Photo via Getty