Predicting each NFC South team's record for the 2019 NFL season
The NFC South is known as one of the leagues more intriguing and dominant divisions, primarily based on the number of star players each team possesses. Drew Brees and the Saints will be looking to capture another NFC South title, while Matt Ryan and the Falcons will be looking to bounce back from an injury-plagued season.
Meanwhile, Cam Newton and Jameis Winston will be looking to help guide their respective teams into the postseason in 2019. Here's how I believe each NFC South team will fare, record-wise, in 2019.
#1 New Orleans Saints: 11-5
I believe the Saints will dial it back a bit in 2019, solely based on the fact that there are other NFC teams that have more talent. Yes, the Saints are an offensive powerhouse with Drew Brees showing no signs of declining anytime soon. Despite the departure of Mark Ingram (Ravens), Alvin Kamara looks to take his place as the Saints' #1 running back. After all, he and superstar wide receiver Michael Thomas (1,405 receiving yards and nine touchdowns in '18), are two of the most productive and dominant players in the entire league.
There's no questioning the dominance of New Orleans' offense. Their pass defense, however, concerns me a little heading into this season. In 2018, the Saints were 14th in total yards allowed per game with 349.1. They also ranked 29th in passing yards allowed per game with 268.9, too. Regardless of the Saints' weaknesses, I still believe their juggernaut of an offense will guide them to an 11-win season, as they secure yet another NFC South division title in 2019.
#2 Atlanta Falcons: 10-6
Let's just call last season a dud for the Falcons. I mean, when you consider the plethora of injuries they had defensively, how can we call it anything else? In fact, the defense was so depleted, their overall rankings took a drastic turn downward in 2018.
Last season, Atlanta ranked 25th in points allowed per game with 25.6, 28th in total yards allowed per game with 384.5, 27th in passing yards allowed per game with 259.6 and 25th in rushing yards allowed per game with 124.9.
But have no fear, Falcons fans. Your team is completely healthy and looking to make a strong push at the 2019 postseason. With the return of several key defensive starters like linebacker Deion Jones and safety Keanu Neal, the Falcons' defense can focus on returning to their dominant form.
Look for 'Matty Ice', Julio Jones and a much improved offensive line that includes two brand new additions in Chris Lindstrom and Kaleb McGary, to help guide Atlanta to a 10-win season and a spot in the 2019 postseason.