Full disclosure: I totally stole this idea from Homer McFanboy. As such, his list will probably be better than mine.
1.) Josh Morgan will end up with the most receptions on the team.
For the time being—as big a fan as I am of Leonard Hankerson—it appears that Josh Morgan likely earned himself the starting spot in the Z position opposite Pierre Garçon. While Morgan won’t have the most yards—Garçon will likely have that—Morgan’s solid route running and steady hands will leave him with the lead for receptions on the team. If Griffin III can get the same kind of chemistry with Morgan as he seems to have with Garçon, it’ll be a pretty huge improvement.
2.) Roy Helu Jr. still ends up with the most rushing yards amongst the running backs.
Mike Shanahan seems to be doing the New Orleans Saints thing, where we stockpile backs, they all get starts, they all get touches, and fantasy football owners lose their frickin’ minds. I don’t know if any one running back will reach 1,000 yards this season. But If there is one who will come close, it’ll be Roy Helu. Even though Evan Royster’s steady hand and Alfred Morris’ hard nose power running will be the focus of the run game, Roy Helu being a change of pace back will have him explode in yardage. Last year they leaned on Helu and he produced, but got hurt. This year, I expect Kyle Shanahan to pound with Royster and Morris, then insert Helu and watch the magic happen.
3.) Richard Crawford will supplant Cedric Griffin as the third cornerback
Just about no one likes Cedric Griffin. Like no one. I have not seen a single Redskins fan defend him or his play. I’ve seen more people defending Reed Doughty than Cedric Griffin. At some point this season, Griffin is going to play himself out of a job and Crawford is going to take the field. He might get picked on as a rookie, but Crawford flashed some special talent in the preseason that I don’t think can be ignored. Unless Crezden Butler just out works him in practice, Crawford will get his shot, and likely won’t disappoint.
4.) DeAngelo Hall will have a career year.
That’s right. I said it. I’m still a D-Hall guy. Though he’s still going to gamble and get burnt on some plays (it’s just what he does), D-Hall’s play will improve significantly. He will relish the role of a slot corner, having a career year in tackles, sacks, passes defensed, and tying his career high for interceptions.
5.) Brian Orakpo and Ryan Kerrigan combine for more than twenty sacks.
They already got pretty close to this last year, when Rak had 9 sacks and Kerrigan has 7.5. The combination of Kerrakpo will kerrack (ah, ah, see what I did there!?) the twenty sack threshold and approach the big 3-0 by seasons end.
6.) Robert Griffin III wins Offensive Rookie of the Year…despite having less passing yards than Andrew Luck and less rushing yards than Russell Wilson
Why? Because of overall impact on his team. Actually, I think the ultimate battle for ROTY does come down to Griffin, Wilson and Luck. But people have zero expectation for the Luck led Colt. The Seahawks are only a couple seasons removed from a playoff appearance (dubious as it may have been) and had a solid season last year.
Because it’ll be perceived that Robert Griffin III has ressurected the Washington Redskins from being the worst team in the NFL, he’ll win the Rookie of the Year, in a rare twist, since it’s usually stats that determine that award.
7.) Dezmon Briscoe has the second most receiving touchdowns on the team.
Yeah, I know; Dez (the good Dez) only had 35 receptions for the Bucs last year, and if we were going strictly on the depth chart, Briscoe wouldn’t look to get many touches. But Kyle will find a way to get Briscoe on the field, mostly in the red zone, where he did his best work. He scored 6 touchdowns with two starts in 2011, and seems to have knack for getting open in the red zone. If Dez can keep a good head on his shoulders, Kyle will make sure to feed him the touchdown in the redzone.
8.) The Redskins sweep the Giants for the second year.
It seems like every time the Giants lose to us, they swear up and down their the better team. And the their douchebag ownership will rig the system to try it keep it that way. Sorry, Giants; you’re going to lose to us twice. Again. Robert Griffin III is going to embarass you at your stadium in October, and then you get to walk into FedEx in November, in the middle of a playoff push, and you get to lose. Again.
You can suck it, Giants. Mike’s not going to let our team forget what you did to us. Get some ointment and some icepacks, because we’re going to kick your ass. How’s that for bold?
9.) Two coaching changes happen in the NFC East; neither one of them has anything to do with Mike Shanahan.
The Cowboys got off to a good start, but I can’t help but think at some point during the season, they’re going to do that thing the Cowboys do when they go through a losing stretch, and Jerry Jones loses his patience, and they miss the playoffs again or lose in the first round, and then Jason Garrett gets fired and Rob Ryan becomes the new head coach. I can’t imagine a scenario outside of a Super Bowl appearance where this doesn’t happen.
Meanwhile, Andy Reid finally decides to leave Philadelphia (it’s his choice, not Lurie’s, if he leaves) and takes a year off, probably after going 8-8 when Michael Vick gets hurt. Again.
10.) The Redskins just make the playoffs with a 9-7 record.
It’s supposed to be bold, right? Let’s make it bolder.
Week 1: @ New Orleans: L 28-20
Week 2: @ St. Louis: W 28-17
Week 3: Cincinnati: W 24-17
Week 4: @ Tampa Bay: W 27-14
Week 5: Atlanta Falcons: L 30-21
Week 6: Minnesota Vikings: W 30-17
Week 7: @ New York Giants: W 35-15
Week 8: @Pittsburgh Steelers: L 31-13
Week 9: Carolina Panthers: W 48-35
Week 11: Philadephia Eagles: L 24-14
Week 12: @Dallas Cowboys: L 31-28 (OT)
Week 13: New York: W 37-14
Week 14: Baltimore Ravens: L 17-14
Week 15: @Cleveland Browns: W 27-24 (OT)
Week 16: @Philadelphia Eagles: L 27-20
Week 17: Dallas Cowboys: W 30-24 (OT)
vs. New Orleans Saints: W 28-20
@ Green Bay: L 35-28