The 2012 NFL Breakdown – Part 2 (The AFC)
By: Josue “Josh” Alvarez Mapp (a.k.a. DJ Mappquest)
So NFL Network has been focused on how a team’s schedule may make or break coaches careers. I do not necessarily agree that a schedule is enough to make or break a coach. His schedule will dictate a bit, but all teams know six of their 16 matches for the season. In general though, there are many coaches, regardless of strength of schedule and who they face, who are currently on the hot seat and need to produce with their team if they like where they are at.
When you think of coaches in the AFC, and hot seat, the first coach that should come to mind is Rex Ryan, right? 2009 and 2010 seasons were phenomenal seasons with the rookie turned sophomore quarterback Mark Sanchez. 2011 was less impressive. Last season ended in drama for the Jets. Tons of questions and no answers. They can take solemn in knowing they can pray, however, thanks to their new team chaplain Tim Tebow. It is hard for me to grasp how a team goes from back-to-back AFC Championships to shambles like this, but it happened. New York is relentless. Tebow or not Tebow, the Jets have to make it to the playoffs to show last year was just a bad year. Otherwise, the NFL and all of us fans will be short one talkative coach who gives us plenty to talk and write about. What a shame?
On the opposite shore, to a team that considered Rex Ryan, is the Chargers. The Chargers has always been associated as the “sleeper” – the team you will have to watch out for “when it wakes up.” They are a solid team come late October until December. However recently, their performance leaves a bit to be desired. Norv Turner will have to put together a plan so the team makes it to the playoffs, either in sleeper fashion or overall dominance of the AFC West – which ever comes first. Anything else may just be too lack luster.
Another AFC West team that has to win and perform well is the Denver Broncos. I don’t care how much you hate Tim Tebow for whatever reasons – he got the team to the Divisional Round of the playoffs (however lucky or skillful it was, it is what it is). Now with Peyton Manning and the entire escapade around him, the Broncos have to produce. Not only that, they need to get to the Divisional Round of playoffs. If not, I give permission for the Bronco fans to stormthe castle (Mile High) and de-throne John Fox and John Elway. If Tebow is truly so terrible and Manning so great, he can do what Tebow did and better, in a better style. That’s it. No if’s, and’s, but’s about it.
Remember this is just the AFC teams and coaches that should be concerned this upcoming season. Check out my NFC listing for teams and coaches who should be worried. There are a lot of teams the experts mention that I don’t and vice versa. Clearly it is all clearly out of opinion. Just remember though, if things get crazy in any of these teams, DJ Mappquest told you what is up.