We have peeped the NFC East and North, now it’s time to check out the NFC South. The NFC South was ran by the New Orleans Saints last year. Atlanta and Carolina finished tied for second in the division as both had losing records. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers finished last and they only won five games. New Orleans reached the NFC title game but fell to the Rams in controversial fashion. The Carolina Panthers hit rock bottom after a great start. Atlanta fell victim to the injury bug as they suffered on both sides of the ball. Tampa Bay didn’t make the playoffs for the 12th consecutive season. Who will win the NFC South division in 2019?
The biggest hurdle the Falcons will have to face in 2019 is injuries. In 2018, Atlanta lost players early and often due to injury. Those injuries hurt their chances of returning to the Super Bowl to the point they didn’t make the playoffs. Atlanta brought back Dirk Koetter and this could spell trouble for the rest of the league. Julio Jones and Atlanta are still working on another contract, but he’s healthy coming into camp. The Falcons defense was without several key members last season because of injury. They gave Grady Jarrett a contract extension as he’s one of the better defensive linemen in the league. Will the Falcons challenge New Orleans for the NFC South crown?
Carolina seemed to be cruising to the playoffs last season before the wheels fell off. The Panthers lost seven of their final eight games last year. Cam Newton played with an injured shoulders, which required surgery this offseason. While the Panthers made a few moves during the offseason, the health of Newton is the key. If Cam Newton is healthy, this team have a chance to win the division. With an unhealthy Newton, Carolina won’t have a chance in the division. Will Newton be healthy enough to play the entire season?
New Orleans Saints
The last two seasons, New Orleans have been closer to the Super Bowl. Two years ago, the Minnesota Miracle prevented them from reaching the NFC title game. Last season, the controversial “no-call” against the Rams in the NFC title game. This season the Saints are hoping to finally reach the Super Bowl. They won’t have Mark Ingram as he bolted in free agency. Alvin Kamara will be the featured back, and this could be a blessing in disguise for the Saints. On the defensive side, the Saints will boast one of the tougher defensive lines. Can they repeat as division champs and make the step to the Super Bowl?
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Tampa Bay is trying to remove themselves from the cellar of the NFC South. They tried clearing cap space by cutting long time Buc, Gerald McCoy. They’re hoping that Ndamukong Suh can man the defensive line in his absence. They drafted Devin White out of LSU to be the future of the Bucs defense. The biggest move made by the Bucs was bringing Bruce Arians. Arians will bring discipline and a star-studded coaching staff with him. Arians have always been great with QBs, will he resurrect the career of Jameis Winston? Can the Buccaneers somehow be competitive in the NFC South this season?
My Division Picks
- Atlanta Falcons
- New Orleans Saints
- Carolina Panthers
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers
How do you see the NFC South playing out? Will the Saints dominate this year, or will the Falcons or Panthers challenge them? Leave some feedback below about anything related to the NFC South.