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NFC West: Arizona, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle
The NFC west is a tough division, with three teams that finished above .500 last year,
it’s no wonder they had a Super Bowl winner in their division.
The Arizona Cardinals who finished 2nd in last year’s standings, look to try and get back
to the playoffs behind the young talents of Kyler Murray and Dendre Hopkins. The QB
and his wide receiver immediately connected well when Hopkins first arrived in Arizona
from Houston, the duo quickly shook up the division and made their talent known. They
have had some trouble though, especially on the side of Kyler Murray. Murray has had
some trouble with Arizona’s front office and there have been rumors of a trade brewing
for the talented QB. All of those have settled now but Murray is still in the hot seat and
he has to get back and connect with Hopkins if the Cardinals want to stand a chance
against their division rival and Super Bowl winners, the L.A. Rams. The Cardinals have
proved well in the defensive category and their offense has proved well also, but both
need to be in the top 10 if the Cardinals want a shot at making a solid run through the
regular season and securing a nice playoff spot. The Cardinals open up the season at
home against a tough Kansas City Chiefs team and hope to start the season 1-0 to get
an edge on the Rams while they can.
Sean McVay and his L.A. Rams were world champions of the 2021-22 NFL season.
They look to make it back to back championships as the Rams have really not lost
anyone crucial from their roster. Matthew Stafford and Cooper Kupp both return for
another season in L.A. while Aaron Donald will be coming back as well on the defensive
side. With adding another key wide receiver in Allen Robinson for Stafford to throw to, the Rams also have A’Shawn Robinson, and Jalen Ramsey to help out their defense. A
solid defense last year that was in the middle and an offense that tore apart every team
in the playoffs, McVay and Stafford look to get back to another Super Bowl, which would
be remarkable since Stafford could never get there with his beloved Detroit Lions. Los
Angeles opens up their 2022 season at home against the best defense and favorite to
win the Super Bowl, Buffalo Bills, where it should be a good test to actually see if
Stafford belongs on the top 5 QB’s in the NFL list.
The San Francisco 49ers are a team that have seasons from the lowest of lows and
highest of highs. Finishing first in the division back in 2019 and making it to the Super
Bowl and losing to the Kansas City Chiefs, San Fran has struggled to maintain a QB at
the starting position. After having a successful Super Bowl run with Garoppolo, the
49ers thought they were set and named Jimmy as the starter for the next season. It was
until then they realized that Garoppolo was injury prone, just like a lot of NFL stars who come
out of nowhere. The team flip flopped between Mullens and Garoppolo being their top
passers for the past 3 seasons and with having a star TE like George Kittle and a
receiver like Aiyuk, San Fran has some work to do. Their defense proves well as it was
in the top 10 last year in the NFL and looks to stay right in the same spot. Giving away
most of their pick for this past draft and not being able to pick until the 5th round, the
49ers don’t have much of a depth chart and will struggle if they see any injuries
especially on the RB side. The 49ers open up in Chicago against the Bears and look to
start the season off well, traveling back home to play Seattle the next week.
Let’s just say the Seattle Seahawks are looking for answers on their side of the country,
with QB Russell Wilson departing for the Broncos in a trade that shook up both teams.
Seattle received two first round draft picks that included this last year’s draft and next
year’s 2023 draft. Two second round draft picks which included this year’s 40th and
next year’s 2023 pick, this year’s 5th rounder, TE Noah Fant, QB Drew Lock and
defensive end Shelby Harris. You could say that Seattle won that trade with everything
they got to build back up after losing their star QB. Although Denver did not have to give
up their best receiver in Jerry Jeudy. Seattle is looking for lots of answers as they
drafted well, taking an offensive tackle in the first round and securing a LB and Michigan
State’s Kenneth Walker III in the second round. Seattle looks to have a promising
rebuilding year, hoping to make the playoffs but they understand that if they don’t, it
won’t be the end of the world. The Seahawks start the season against ex-quarterback
Russell Wilson and his new Denver Broncos, which would prove a statement in Seattle,
that they don’t need Wilson anymore if they can secure a win against him.
With all of that, who will be taking the NFC championship? Will it be Matthew Stafford’s
LA Rams, which could mean two NFC Championships and two Super Bowl
appearances in the first two seasons, or will it be Tom Brady’s Buccaneers? It could
even be the Detroit Lions or maybe even the Philadelphia Eagles that come out on top,
it will be an interesting season in the NFC.