BUFFALO, NY – The NFL Preseason is in full swing, which means it’s time for more Hot Topics For Rugby NFL Fans. Until the beginning of the regular season, or one of our ruggers turned ballers makes the news I will discuss two Hot Topics from one of the conferences in the NFL. This week I’m focusing on the AFC. Enjoy!
Will a rookie quarterback start Week 1? Last season we were showered with rookie success from Andrew Luck, to Robert Griffin III and Russell Wilson. Last year’s draft class was considered to be one of the best quarterback classes this past decade. However this year was not the case. With last year’s rookie success for quarterbacks, many feel that the bar has been raised too high for this year’s class.
Really, there are only two rookie quarterbacks that have a chance to start Week 1 for their team: EJ Manuel of the Buffalo Bills and Geno Smith of the New York Jets. Manuel is facing competition from newly acquired free agent Kevin Kolb, who is yet to find his footing in the league. Smith is up against incumbent starter Mark Sanchez. I give the edge to Manuel because this Bill is the type of player that can light this league on fire. With his size and athleticism, he can lead Buffalo to success in a division that is a little uneasy at the moment. If Buffalo wants to beat New England Week 1, they should start the rookie.
Do the New England Patriots still have a stronghold on the AFC East? It has been a rough off season for the Patriots this year. With Aaron Hernandez and Wes Welker gone and Rob Gronkowski coming off too many injuries to count, the Pats’ offense is left in shambles. Yes, Tom Brady is still the quarterback – but he’s aging and no longer has anyone to throw to. And for those of you who think New England has a good running game, just stop with that silliness. New England’s run game was built off of their passing game last year… which is no longer existent.
As for the New England defense? It’s just not impressive. Did they let up a lot of points? No. But they let up way too many yards. Teams marched up and down the field on this team and without a good offense that will prove to be a big problem.
And the off-the-field problems certainly won’t help. Hernandez cast a very dark shadow over this team and it will linger throughout the season… New England will be looking over their shoulders, because the rest of the division is coming after them.