The Philadelphia Eagles, along with the four other teams on this list, don't get the respect they deserve. This off-season, NFL fans have twiddled their thumbs and played the waiting game. With NFL season about to begin tonight, it's time to assess the teams that could prove to be the underdogs of the season.
With teams such as the Los Angeles Rams, Cincinnati Bengals, Buffalo Bills, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and several others having their praises sung, the Philadelphia Eagles, along with four other squads, in particular, run the risk of flying under the radar, but not anymore. Follow along as we discuss the five most underhyped teams going into a brand new NFL season, featuring the Philadelphia Eagles.
5. Philadelphia Eagles
The Philadelphia Eagles have grown sick and tired of playing second fiddle to the Dallas Cowboys. After winning the Super Bowl during the 2017 season, the Philadelphia Eagles have seemingly fallen off the map.
But, with the addition of wide receiver A.J. Brown and a renewed confidence in quarterback Jalen Hurts, the Philadelphia Eagles have become the odds-on favorite and popular pick to win the NFC East. The immediate competition, by and large, could serve as a springboard for the Philadelphia Eagles to have a first-round home game.
4. Pittsburgh Steelers
Quietly, the Pittsburgh Steelers have made a few subtle moves this offseason that should put them over the top this year.
Minkah Fitzpatrick will be the NFL’s highest-paid safety, and rightfully so. Also, Pittsburgh has seemingly drafted their quarterback of the future in Kenny Pickett, while signing their bridge quarterback, Mitch Trubisky.
Outside of their additions, head coach Mike Tomlin will be Pittsburgh’s biggest ace in the hole. Despite nearly two decades of coaching experience, Tomlin has never put together a losing season, including last year, as the Steelers finished just above the postseason finish line with a record of 9-7-1.
As a whole, the AFC North isn’t the most intimidating division. The Cincinnati Bengals, fresh off a Super Bowl appearance, won just 10 games during the regular season last year. The Baltimore Ravens are still attempting to placate Lamar Jackson's financial wishes.
The Cleveland Browns will look to keep their heads above water without the services of Deshaun Watson for the first 11 games of the new year. The Steelers, considering their defensive chops and coaching pedigree, should eke out just enough games to win the division.
3. Detroit Lions
Dan Campbell did his absolute best to fire up his troops each and every Sunday. And while it didn’t result in many wins, finishing with just three on the year, the Detroit Lions battled on a weekly basis.
On more than five occasions, the Lions lost a one-score game. Meaning, they found themselves on the wrong end of incredibly close matchups. Jared Goff, their current single-caller, has the credentials of a player who should be shown a bit more respect than usual.
In total, Goff has been named to two Pro Bowls, has thrown for over 4,600 passing yards twice, and pushed the Los Angeles Rams to the Super Bowl in 2018. It won’t be easy for the Lions by any means, but if they can simply have a bit more luck on their side, the close losses they endured last year should result in a number of wins.
Also Checkout:- Eagles Preseason Schedule
2. Minnesota Vikings
The Minnesota Vikings have been on the receiving end of criticism over the past few years. Most of that has fallen squarely onto the shoulders of quarterback Kirk Cousins. Yet, with the former Pro Bowl-level signal-caller putting up incredible numbers year after year, it’s been difficult to understand why this team simply hasn’t gotten it right.
This season, despite their failed attempts at building a contender, the Vikings are floating heavily under the radar. The Green Bay Packers, of course, headlined by Aaron Rodgers, have emerged as the team to beat and favorites to come out of the NFC North. But, with Davante Adams bolting town and heading to the Las Vegas Raiders, the blatant disrespect being shown to the Raiders is bemusing.
From top to bottom, the Vikings have a loaded roster, especially on offense. In addition to Cousins, Minnesota houses the talents of Justin Jefferson, Adam Thielen, and running back Dalvin Cook. Sleep on them if you want, but the Vikings are set up to make some serious noise this year.
1. New England Patriots
It may have taken Bill Belichick a bit more time than expected, but the New England Patriots appear to be a well-oiled machine now without the help of Tom Brady. Yet, due to a few quirky and interesting decisions made by Belichick during the offseason, the Patriots are expected to struggle big time.
Admittedly, the refusal to name an offensive coordinator is a bit of a confusing one. Even more head-scratching is Matt Patricia, who has protruded to the front of the line in that department. The former Detroit Lions head coach has spent the majority of his career on the defensive side of the ball.
Although not ideal, counting out the Patriots is even more bemusing. Last season, with little to no help on the offensive end, the Patriots came within one game of winning the AFC East. This year, thanks to the additions of linebacker Mack Wilson, safety Jabrill Peppers, and wideout DeVante Parker, the Patriots should challenge the Buffalo Bills for the top spot, once again, while locking up a postseason berth.