2007 NFL Regular Season Questions

Now that we are finished with four long weeks of “exhibition” games, I thought it was time to revisit and update our questions for the 2007 NFL regular season.  

 

AFC North

 

Baltimore Ravens

 

Are MLB Ray Lewis and QB Steve McNair too old and beat up to continue to be the locker room leaders of the Ravens and will they finish this season healthy?

Will the NFL’s 2nd rated defense from 2006 (only allowed 201 points) have to carry this team again?

Will RB Willis McGahee be reborn with the Ravens after being a malcontent in Buffalo?

Do the Ravens have any fight left after an embarrassing divisional round home playoff loss to the Colts?

Will their offensive line anchored by aging OT Jonathan Odgen hold up for the entire year and can Supplemental Draft pick Jared Gaither replace Ogden if needed?

 

Cincinnati Bengals

 

Was the division title in 2005 the peak for this team and their Head Coach?

After 4 seasons in Cincinnati and no playoff wins, Is Head Coach Marvin Lewis on the Hot Seat with the Brown Family?

Will the Bengals after 9 off the field criminal related events, clean up their act in 2007?

Are the Bengals too “Fantasy Football” based? Sure they have all the offensive weapons in the world, but they are too inconsistent.

How will the team survive the distractions related to the suspension (8 games) of WR Chris Henry?

 

Cleveland Browns

 

Is this the last year for Head Coach Romeo Crennel and is Bill Cowher waiting in the wings?

How long will it take for Brady Quinn to take over the quarterback position from Charlie Frye and will he hold out?

At the age of 30 and with several years of carries, does Jamal Lewis have anything left?

Will younger players step up to replace injured players OLB Willie McGinest and C LeCharles Bentley and can the veterans come back from the Physically Unable to Perform list?

Did the Browns over pay in bringing in free agent G Eric Steinbach from the Bengals?

 

Pittsburgh Steelers

Will new Head Coach Mike Tomlin establish his program and lead the Steelers back to the playoffs at the tender age of 35?

Are the Steelers including QB Ben Roethlisberger (17 INT’s) over their Super Bowl “hang over”?

How will the loss of LB Joey Porter, O-Line Coach Russ Grimm, and Offensive Coordinator Ken Whisenhunt effect the team?

How will the Steelers incorporate aspects of Tomlin’s Cover 2 scheme into Dick LeBeau’s 3-4 blitz based defense?

How will potential free agent Pro Bowl G Alan Faneca perform now that he knows he probably not get an extension (S Troy Polamalu received extension in training camp)?

 

AFC East

 

Buffalo Bills

 

Will the Bills finally put it together enough to end their 7-year playoff drought?

Have the Bills had too many quality defections (RB McGahee, MLB Fletcher, OLB Spikes, CB Clements) since last year?

Will owner Ralph Wilson get the new stadium he is seeking or are the Bills moving?

Is this the year that JP Losman lives up to his first round draft grade (2004)?

Will the draft additions of LB Posluszny, RB Lynch, S Wendling, QB Edwards, and others impact the Bills roster?

Is GM Marv Levy too old to develop the roster necessary to get back to the playoffs?

 

Miami Dolphins

 

Will new Head Coach Cam Cameron help re-establish the Dolphins after a 6-10 record with 3 straight losses to end the season?

Will the highly rated defense from 2006 (only allowed 283 points) have to carry this team again?

Is new quarterback Trent Green healthy enough (concussions) at age 37 to be an effective starter?

How are the Dolphins going to utilize 2007 1st Rd pick WR/KR Ted Ginn Jr?

Will Ronnie Brown stay healthy enough to have an impact season and quiet Head Coach Cam Cameron?

 

New England Patriots

 

With all of the moves that the Patriots have made (WR Moss, WR/KR Welker, DB James, TE Brady and others) are they as good as the Colts?

Is this Bill Belichek’s last season in New England?

Will Brady improve upon his passing numbers (61.8%, 3529 yards, 24 TD’s, and 12 INTs) now that he has a whose who of WR’s?

Is the core of the Patriots defense (LB Bruschi, LB Vrabel, S Harrison, LB Seau) too old?

Is Randy Moss healthy (Hamstring) and can he fit in?

How will the team’s chemistry be throughout the 2007 with players like Moss, troubled draftee S Brandon Merriweather, and suspended Safety Rodney Harrison?

 

New York Jets

 

With a more difficult schedule in 2007, can the Jets repeat their 2006 success and can the young brain trust of Mangini and Schottenheimer keep it up?

Can Chad Pennington stay healthy for the 2nd year in a row?

Is Thomas Jones ready to replace Curtis Martin or will it be RB by committee?

Will the Jets find some explosiveness at the WR position?

How will the Jets utilize the new ‘Slash’, former college QB Brad Smith?

 

AFC South

 

Houston Texans

 

Will Matt Schaub live up to the expectations of being the starter (only two starts in his career), his trade return compensation, and $48 Million Dollar contract?

Will 2006 1st Overall Pick Mario Williams live up to his draft status and pay after only 4.5 sacks in ’06?

Will running back Ahmad Green have a rebirth in Houston or are his best days behind him?

Can the Texans find an adequate receiving compliment to Pro Bowl WR Andre Johnson?

Will their offense find the explosiveness needed to compete with the Colts (Only scored 267 Pts in 2006)?

 

Indianapolis Colts

 

How do they avoid the Super Bowl hangover of injuries, defections, complacency, money, and other factors?

Will Peyton Manning and Tony Dungy be more relaxed now that they have won their Super Bowl?

How will they handle the defections from their defense (S Mike Doss, CB Nick Harper, CB Jason David, and Cato June) and the retirement of OT Tarik Glenn?

Are RB Joseph Addai and rookie OT Tony Ugoh ready to assume the roles of the featured players?

Are they ready to turn back the contenders to their title, especially the Patriots, who have loaded up for this season?

 

Jacksonville Jaguars

 

Now that Byron Leftwich is gone, Can David Garrard assume the role of starting quarterback (5-5 as starter in 2006)?

How will the Jags share the rushing workload between aging 1,000 yard RB Fred Taylor (32) and up and comer Maurice Jones-Drew (13 TD’s)?

After 4 seasons in Jacksonville and no playoff wins, is Head Coach Jack Del Rio on the Hot Seat?

Will any of the highly drafted WR’s (Reggie Williams, Matt Jones, or Ernest Wilford) take the next step to becoming elite receiver?

Is their star studded D-Line of DT Stroud, DT Henderson, DE Hayward, and DE Spicer still as effective as a couple of years ago?

 

Tennessee Titans

 

How will the team survive the distractions related to the suspension (season) of infamous CB/KR Adam “Pacman” Jones?

Will Vince Young continue to mature after a breakout rookie year (R.O.Y – over 2,000 yards passing w/ 12 TD’s and over 500 yards rushing w/ 7 TD’s)?

Which WR (David Givens, Brandon Jones, Justin Gage, or others) will step up to assume the number #1 position vacated by Drew Bennett and can Givens return from a bad knee injury?

Will Jeff Fisher be staying or going after the season (13 years w/ team and didn’t sign an extension in off-season)?

Who is going to be the featured running back on this team (Retread Chris Brown, Draftee Chris Henry, or underachieving LenDale White)?

 

AFC West

 

Denver Broncos

 

With the trade/retirement of Jake Plummer, is 2006 1st Rd Pick Jay Cutler ready to assume the role as the starting quarterback (9 TD’s and 5 INT’s)?

How will the team handle the end of season collapse including losing at home to the 49ers that knocked them out the playoffs?

Will RB Travis “Big Daddy” Henry (Career year in ’06 having 1211 yards w/ 4.5 ypc) adapt to the Broncos zone-blocking scheme and will he be productive in his 3rd NFL stop?

Will Mike Shanahan be staying or going after the season (12 years w/ team)?

With all of the moves that the Broncos have made (CB Dre Bly, TE Graham, DT Kennedy, DT Adams, and others) can they challenge the Chargers for AFC West dominance?

 

Kansas City Chiefs

 

After winning the starting job in training camp, is Damon Huard (Career Year in 2006, 11 TD’s and 1 INT) ready to be the leader of the Chiefs?

Now that holdout RB Larry Johnson has a new contract, will he be effective without playing in training camp?

Will the Offensive Line be the same after the retirement of Pro Bowl G Will Shields this off-season and OT Willie Roaf in 2006?

Can Herman Edwards continue to build up the Chiefs defense (315 Pts Allowed)?

Will any of the WR’s including 2007 1st Rd Pick WR Dwayne Bowe step up and take some pressure off of TE Tony Gonzalez?

 

Oakland Raiders

 

Is recently named starter Josh McCown the answer at quarterback or will Daunte Culpepper parlay his stellar pre-season into a starting job?

Can new and very young Head Coach Lane Kiffin (32) finally get this team back to respectability (2-14 in 2006)?

Will 2007 1st Overall Pick QB JaMarcus Russell ever sign with this team and if he does will he see the field in this season?

Will the jettisoning of malcontent WR Randy Moss and the re-emergence of WR Jerry Porter finally solidify the offense?

Can the defense perform at a high level again in spite of the problems on offense (Allowed only 20 pts a game despite the offense only scoring 168 pts all year)?

 

San Diego Chargers

 

Will the team be the same after the firing of former Head Coach Marty Schottenheimer?

Can new Head Coach Norv Turner continue to maintain the Chargers record and get them further in the playoffs (NFL Best 14-2 record in 2006)?

Will any of the WR’s including 2007 1st Rd Pick WR Craig Davis step up and take some pressure off of TE Antonio Gates.

The Chargers have better personnel on offense and defense than almost every team, but can this team take the next step into contending with the Colts and Patriots?

Will Phillip Rivers continue to mature after a breakout first year as a starter and can RB LaDanian Tomlinson duplicate his amazing MVP numbers from last year?

 

NFC North

 

Chicago Bears

 

How will the team survive the distractions related to the release of enigmatic DT Tank Johnson?

Can the Bears avoid the Super Bowl loser problems (Injuries, Karma, Defections, Infighting, etc)?

Is Cedric Benson ready to assume the role as the featured back?

Now that holdout franchised player LB Lance Briggs is in camp, will he perform at the same level as in ’06 and how has Briggs been affected by his sports car accident?

Will Rex Grossman find the consistency needed to be a championship level quarterback (23 TD’s and 20 INT’s) and will Lovie Smith stick Rex Grossman throughout the season?

 

Detroit Lions

 

Can 2nd Year Head Coach Rod Marinelli finally get this team back to the playoffs?

Will franchise RB Kevin Jones return from a serious foot injury?

Are there enough balls for everyone (Williams, Furrey, McDonald, and others) including 2007 1st Rd pick Calvin Johnson?

Will QB Jon Kitna live up to his big expectations from playing O-Coordinator Mike Martz’s offense (Predicted he would throw 50 TD’s)?

Will GM Matt Millen survive after this season (3 Coaches, No Playoffs, 24-72 record)?

 

Green Bay Packers

 

Will this be the year that Brett Favre finally says goodbye to the NFL or will he stick around after the good feelings from a 4 game winning streak at the end of 2006?

Will any of the WR’s including 2006 2nd Rd Pick WR Greg Jennings step up and take some pressure off of QB Favre and how healthy is #1 target Donald Driver’s foot?

With RB Ahmad Green going to the Houston Texans, will featured RB rookie Brandon Jackson be able to fill Green’s shoes?

Will the defense be better with the maturation of AJ Hawk and the addition of 2007 1st Rd pick Justin Harrell (Allowed 27 pts per game in 2007)?

Can the Packers young O-Line continue to protect the 38-year-old Favre (237 Consecutive Starts)?

Minnesota Vikings

 

Can QB Tavaris Jackson live up to the expectations of being a full time starter in 2007or should the Vikings have a plan B?

Will RB Adrian Peterson live up to the hype of being the first RB selected in the 2007 Draft and will there be enough carries for Peterson and Chester Taylor?

Will owner Zyggi Wilff get the new stadium he is seeking or are the Vikings moving?

Will any of the WR’s including 2005 1st Rd Pick WR Troy Williamson step up and take some pressure off of QB Jackson?

Will any of the high draft picks on defense step up (DE Udeze, DE James, MLB Henderson, OLB Greenway, DB Griffin and others)?

 

NFC East

 

Dallas Cowboys

 

How will the Cowboys adjust to the loss of disciplinarian former Head Coach Bill Parcells and the addition of “player’s coach” Wade Phillips?

Can Tony Romo repeat his magic from 2006 in basically his 2nd season in the NFL and without his desired contract extension?

Will Terrell Owens make through his second season in Dallas and will he continue his trend of  “big plays”, but still dropping some routine passes?

Are some of the Cowboys core too old (WR Owens, WR Glenn, LT Adams, OLB Ellis)?

Will the secondary improve on their coverage from 2006, especially the safeties?

  

New York Giants

 

Will Head Coach Tom Couglin survive another 8-8 season or is the handwriting on the wall?

How will the offense replace Tiki Barber and his over 2,000 yards of offense including 1,600 yards rushing?

Is Eli Manning ready to be the quarterback the Giants thought they traded for in 2004 and how will he deal with sniping commentaries from the NY press (Tiki Barber)?

Will the secondary improve on their coverage from 2006, especially the CB’s?

Will there be harmony in the Giants locker room, especially with former holdout DE Michael Strahan?

 

Philadelphia Eagles

 

Is Donovan McNabb healthy and what will happen if he is injured for the 4th time in 6 years and will they regret not bringing back Jeff Garcia?

Will Andy Reid let Offensive Coordinator Marty Mornhinweg continue to run the football?

Will the LB’s improve upon 3 sacks and 2.INTs now that they have added OLB Spikes, jettisoned MLB Jeremiah Trotter, promoted OLB Chris Gcong and made other moves?

Are core players FS Brian Dawkins, LT William Thomas, and DE Jevon Kearse, too old?

After letting WR Donte Stallworth leave, can 3rd year WR Reggie Brown take the next step up becoming the Eagles go-to guy?

With the changes on the D-Line can they stop the run (26th Ranked)?

Can 2nd year players DT Bunkely, OLB Gcong, G Max Jean-Giles, and OT Justice make an impact, especially first round pick Bunkley (9 TKLS)?

Can Sean Considine replace Michael Lewis and physically hold up to being an every down SS (In the Box)?

 

Washington Redskins

 

Does Joe Gibbs still have the fire in his belly for another NFL season?

Will Jason Campbell continue his maturation and become the leader of the Redskins?

2006’s High Priced Pickups (WR Randle El, WR Lloyd, DE Carter and others) live up to their expectations?

Can the Defensive Line improve on a franchise low 19 sacks?

How will the ‘Skins share the rushing workload between 1,000 yard RB’s Clinton Portis and Ladell Betts?

 

NFC South

 

Atlanta Falcons

 

How will the team survive the distractions related to Michael Vick’s guilty plea and pending sentencing in his dog fighting case?

Can QB Joey Harrington finally become a winning quarterback and replace Vick?

Will new Head Coach Bobby Petrino establish his program and lead the Falcons back to the playoffs in spite of the Vick case and being a former college coach?

Can older Falcons Gandy, Milloy, Dunn, Horn, and Jackson still produce at a high level?

How will they replace DE Patrick Kerney’s sack production (Draftee Anderson or the often injured Abraham)?

Are they going to regret trading Matt Schaub to the Texans?

 

Carolina Panthers

 

Is Jake Delhomme ready to play and what will happen if he is ineffective (David Carr in wings)?

Are core players FS Mike Minter, DT Kris Jenkins, DE Mike Rucker, and MLB Dan Morgan too old?

After cutting WR Keyshawn Johnson, can 2007 2nd Rd pick WR Dwayne Jarrett, WR Keary Colbert, WR Drew Carter, or someone else step to help Pro Bowl WR Steve Smith?

Is this the last year for Head Coach John Fox and is Bill Cowher waiting in the wings?

Now that Colts DE Dwight Freeney (6 years, $72 Million, $30 Million guaranteed) got a huge contract, will Panthers star DE Julius Peppers be looking for a similar deal?

 

New Orleans Saints

 

With a more difficult schedule in 2007 can the Saints repeat their 2006 success and can young Head Coach Sean Payton keep it up?

Can Drew Brees stay healthy and produce MVP type numbers for the 2nd year in a row?

Is Reggie Bush ready to have a breakout season in 2007 and will there be enough carries for Bush and McAllister?

Now that Joe Horn has moved on to Atlanta, will Marques Colston continue his impromptu rise and become the Saints number #1 WR?

Will the Saints overachieving “no-name” defense continue to excel in 2007 (Allowed 20 pts a game in 2006)?

 

Tampa Bay Buccaneers

 

Will John Gruden be staying or going after the season (Win in SB XXXVII is a distant memory)?

Can starting quarterback Jeff Garcia reproduce his ’06 magic in Tampa Bay and can Chris Simms return to the field?

Can Cadillac Williams (5’11, 204) stay healthy enough to withstand the pounding of being an every down RB (798 yards, 3.5 ypc, and 1 TD in 2006)?

Which WR (Joey Galloway, Maurice Stovall, Michael Clayton, David Boston or others) will step up to assume the number #1 position to help out Garcia?

Are core players CB Rhonde Barber, OLB Derrick Brooks, CB Brian Kelly, MLB Jeremiah Trotter and others too old?

 

NFC West

 

Arizona Cardinals

 

Can the Cardinals capitalize on having the NFL’s easiest schedule (Opponent’s winning percentage of 46%)?

Can new Head Coach Ken Whisenhunt finally get this team back to the playoffs?

How much does Edgerrin James have left at age 30 (Struggled last year with a 3.4 ypc)?

Will draftee OT Levi Brown and acquisition C Al Johnson finally solidify the O-Line after disappointing Leonard Davis left for Dallas?

Are the Cardinals too “Fantasy Football” based? Sure they have all the offensive weapons in the world, but they are too inconsistent.

Will Matt Leinart live up to his great expectations in his 2nd Season?

 

San Francisco 49ers

 

Are the 49ers really the Cinderella team for 2007 (Expectations similar to 2006 Saints and Jets)

With all of the moves that the 49ers have made (CB Nate Clements, S Michael Lewis, WR Darrell Jackson, 1st Rd Pick LB Patrick Willis and others) are they as good as the Seahawks?

After a solid season as a 1st year starter, is Alex Smith (2890 yards, 16 TD’s and 16 INTs) ready to become an upper tier quarterback?

Can the 49ers with their additions on defense improve an NFL worst 412 pts allowed (26 pts per game)?

Can Frank Gore recover from his pre-season broken hand enough to have another season like 2006 ( 1695 yards, 5.4 ypc, 8 TDs)?

 

Seattle Seahawks

 

Was the Super Bowl appearance in 2005 the peak for this team and their Head Coach?

After 8 seasons in Seattle and being stripped of the GM duties, Is Head Coach Mike Holmgren on the Hot Seat with Paul Allen?

At age 30 and with an injured foot how effective will former MVP RB Shaun Alexander be (896 yards, 3.6 ypc, and 7 TDs)?

With all of the moves that the Seahawks have made in the last few years (WR Deion Branch, DE Patrick Kerney, S Deon Grant, LB Julian Peterson, and others) can they hold off the 49ers and Rams for the division?

Will Matt Hasselbeck stay healthy and will Deion Branch become his number #1 WR living up to his trade value?

 

St. Louis Rams

 

Now that Marc Bulger has his huge contract extension in hand, can he have another 4,000-yard Pro Bowl type season?

Are core players WR Isaac Bruce, OT Orlando Pace, WR Torry Holt, and DE Leonard Little still effective after having been on the team for a number of years (members of Super Bowl team in 1999)?

Can Steven Jackson stay healthy and have another season like 2006 (1528 yards, 4.4 ypc, 13 TD’s, and 90 catches)?

Can undersized 2007 1st Rd Draft pick DT Adam Carriker (290 pounds) make the switch to NT after playing DE in college?

Can the Rams with their additions on defense from the draft improve on their bottom 5 rated unit (Allowed an average of 24 pts per game)?

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