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NFC North Predictions

Where Brad Coustan and I discuss the NFC North.

Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

(To preview the upcoming season, Brad Coustan and I, Brian Stultz, will exchange emails to discuss our predictions for each conference.  My (Brian Stultz) emails are in italics.  Up now:  NFC North.)


So, the NFC North is interesting this year.  The Packers defense is, well, still the Packers defense.  The Bears look like the team to beat, but who knows what Jay Cutler will do.  Plus, that field they play on is always a mess.  The Vikings have Matt Cassel at quarterback, which means eight men in the box to stop Adrian Peterson.  The Lions hired JIM FRIGGING CALDWELL!  What were they thinking?  That guy couldn't coach a Pop Warner team. How do coaches like him get hired again?


1. Bears (11-5)

2. Packers (10-6)

3. Vikings (8-8)

4. Lions (6-10)

5 Things I Like About the NFC North

1. Calvin Johnson - I still remember a catch he made against Auburn when playing at Georgia Tech.  He was unbelievable back then.

2. Adrian Peterson - Poor guy has never had a quarterback

3. Smoking Jay Cutler and his "Don't Give a Crap" Attitude


5. Alshon Jeffrey - He's the best

5 Things I Don't Like About the NFC North

1. Jim Caldwell and his thousand-yard stare

2. Bears fans doing Superfan impressions

3. My good friend and long time Lions beat writer Tom Kowalski dying three years ago

4. Brian Urlacher and his worshippers

5. Aaron Rodgers commercials

5 Players I Like

1. Calvin Johnson

2. Jeffrey

3. Rodgers

4. Stafford

5. Bears defense

5 Players I Don't

1. Eddie Lacy (overrated)

2. Cassel/Bridgewater

3. Packers defense

4. Peterson after Week 12

5. Mike Ditka

I anxiously await your reply!



In just one short preseason the NFC North has morphed into the NFC West as the toughest division in football.  The Arizona Cardinals defense lost a ton of players and the 49ers can't stop violating NFL policy so their defense is shot as well.  Meanwhile the NFC North offenses have enough firepower to blow through ISIS and the Russian involvement in the Ukraine.  Maybe we should just send Trestman, McCarthy, Norv and Joe Lombardi overseas to fight our wars.  Maybe they can all line up under General Schwartkopf and take care of business.  What?  Another 80's reference.  Gulf War and all?  OK - maybe early 90's but just as good right?

My predicted order of finish is a lot different than yours.  Last year Cutler and Rodgers went down and nobody wanted to win the division until the final game when Rodgers came back and threw a long pass to Randall Cobb (my fantasy kryptonite) to beat the Bears for the division.  As a Bears fan that was heartbreaking.  As a guy who dropped Cobb after he broke his leg it was even more heartbreaking.

But the real issue with the NFC North last year was the Lions.  The Lions had everything going for them.  No Rodgers, no Cutler, a horrible Minnesota Viking team and the STILL didn't win the division.  I blame the coach.  Jim Schwartz was a grade A bonafide idiot.  He did less with more than any coach in NFL history other than Wayne Fontes (another 80's reference - you can look him up) so I am GLAD they hired Caldwell because this team needed to CALM DOWN.  Schwartz was a hot head (see Jim Harbaugh handshake) and the team was out of control.  This year they will play more under control.  Joe Lombardi comes in as their offensive coordinator and spreads the ball around.  Calvin won't get as many targets and the WR2 in Detroit will finally be relevant.  On the other side of the ball, they have a DEFENSE and in the land of the blind the one eyed man is king.  So the DETROIT LIONS, in an upset, win the North.

Predicted order of finish:

Lions 10-6

Packers 10-6

Bears 9-7

Vikings 4-12

5 Things I Like About the NFC North:

1.  Offense.  And a lot of it.

2.  The Tundra

3.  Sold out Soldier Field

4.  Wind Chills

5.  Diiiiiiitka

5 Things I Hate About the NFC North:

1.  People who wear cheese on their heads

2.  The Lambeau Leap

3.  "Minnesota Nice" - it doesn't exist.  Trust me.

4.  Guys who take their shirts off in below zero weather

5.  That Detroit plays every Thanksgiving even when they suck

5 Players I Like

1.  "Fat" Eddie Lacy

2.  Matt Stafford - will be a top 5 fantasy QB this year

3.  Golden Tate - who?

4.  Cutty

5.  AP - love AP.  Picked him up in an auction draft at a 20% discount to McCoy and Charles a few nights ago.

5 Players I Hate

1.  Greg Jennings

2.  Ndamukong Suh

3.  Eric Ebron - almost unfair to hate a rookie but ... I do anyway

4.  All the long haired guys on the Packers

5.  Brett Favre - I can still hate him can't I?



We might have to start taking these previews more seriously.  Apparently Yahoo! picked up our AFC North prediction.  I am hoping it is because our friend Christian gave an interview to Yahoo! about our wonderful writing.  I love that guy.

Schwartz might have been the only guy more crazy than Jerry Jones in the NFL last year.

I don't like the cold weather games when Ed Hochuli is involved.  Those guns MUST be shown at all times.  He works out all year so he can show those puppies off every Sunday in the fall.  The cold weather and sleeves just brings him down.

Brett Favre is still very much a jerk so yes, you can still hate him.  I swear to this day that if I ever see Joe Montana in person I will punch him in his face.  Damn those 49ers!

Wait, you have the Lions winning this division?  I thought your drunk vacation was over!  And why are you a Bears fan?  You don't even have a mustache!



Yahoo!  You mean we hit the big time? Holy Tarnowski!  I guess now I am going to have to spell check and punctuation check everything.

Would love to see Schwartz and JJ in a cage match. I think JJ would kick his butt. He's a crafty old dude.

I am a bears fan because I grew up in Chicago. However, when I became a Yankee fan after moving to New York I shaved the mustache for Mr. Steinbrenner.

Yes. It's the Lions my good friend. Even Caldwell can't screw this one up.

The only thing missing from this division is Tom Coughlin's cracking red face.


Yes, YAHOO!  I received a text from our esteemed editor Ray saying that our preview was blowing up more than that Hilton know, I just can't do it.

Our preview is blowing up more than Chris Farley after every SNL.

Our preview is blowing up more than the Hindenburg!

I have plenty more, but am afraid to use many of them.