Season Preview

NFL

ByTheMinNFL

It's September.......the dog days of August are over, Major League Baseball has it's pennant races in full swing, Sky Sports are cleaning up the mess Jim White left behind after Moussa Sissoko made Everton a jilted bride and the NHL is about to unleash the World Cup of Hockey.

But.....none of that matters. It's time for football. The NFL is back.

Welcome to the bytheminute.co preview of the 2016 season and the long road to Superbowl LI, which will be held in Houston on Feb 5th, 2017. Surely LI would've been ideal for holding in China

We'll start with the AFC East. Numbers in brackets are last season's record.

Buffalo Bills (8-8) What's good, and bad, about the Bills this season can be summed up by the word Ryan. With Rex as Head Coach and Rob "managing" the D, they will be entertaining, but mostly for the wrong reasons. They have a premium RB in LeShaun McCoy and a deep threat in WR Sammy Watkins. Keeping QB Tyrod Taylor healthy is key, but backup EJ Manuel will see game time.

Miami Dolphins (6-10) New season, new coach. Adam Gase is the latest man on the hot seat at what is now Hard Rock Stadium. Sadly for him Ryan Tannehill is a significant downgrade on last season's Peyton Manning. They'll rely on London born Jay Ajayi and the ghost of Arian Foster to run the ball. At least they have Jarvis Landry waiting for Tannehill to get the ball vaguely in his direction.

New England Patriots (12-4) The evil empire, led by Sith Lord Belichick will be without Tom "Soft Balls" Brady after his 4game deflategate suspension finally was confirmed. Jimmy Garoppolo will stand in, but really, they could win with Janneane Garofalo at QB. It'll be the usual 10man RB committee and Gronk. There will be 2 games where they run the ball fewer than 10 times and still win.

New York Jets (10-6) The summer long standoff ended and the Jets finally stumped up for another year of Fitz-magic. Or maybe not. Ryan Fitzpatrick has made a career of one bright season followed by concentrated crap, but when the backup is Geno Smith......The defensive front 7 will keep them in games, and Revis Island is still a restricted flight zone, but rest assured, this lot will Jets it up.

bytheminute.co predicted standings: New England 12 - 4 NY Jets 8 - 8 Miami 6 - 10 Buffalo 5 - 11 Patriots book their annual playoff jaunt. A pissed Tom Brady will once again carry this team. The Jets overachieved against a week schedule last year. Rex will be the first coach to go this year.

Next up, the AFC North, it's a Springsteen album in football form.