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AFC East Preview
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AFC East Preview

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Ryan Foley,

 

 

 

 

 

The AFC East has been dominated by the New England Patriots for such a long time that kids beginning high school this year have never experienced a true multi-year losing streak as most NFL fans have at one point, and it will not start this season. Despite all the deflate gate drama and now four game suspension of QB Tom Brady, the Patriots will look to their well adjusted back-up Jimmy Garoppolo to lead the team through that time. With the Buffalo Bills and New York Jets gunning for that top spot in the AFC East, look for vast improvements from the majority of the division aside from the Dolphins, who still have a team; uniforms and everything.

 New York Jets

Record in 2015: 10-6

Key player: Quarterback- Ryan Fitzpatrick

Player To Watch: Running Back- Matt Forte

Outlook: The Jets ended their long contract negotiations with quarterback (QB) Ryan Fitzpatrick and are poised for solid well-rounded offensive attack. With a duo of Brandon Marshall and Eric Decker at wide receiver (WR), the Jets went out and signed Matt Forte to bolster the running game to keep the defenses guessing which will result in the offense opening up. Darrelle Revis is still atop of his game and the defensive line will be dominant as well after resigning Muhammad Wilkerson. If the defense is dominant as a whole with unexpected player development, the Jets could see a return to the playoffs with some good fortune. Prediction: 8-8

 

 Buffalo Bills

Record in 2015: 8-8

Key Player: Quarterback- Tyrod Taylor

Player to watch: Cornerback- Stephon Gilmore

Outlook: The Bills can hit you from all angles on offense with a backfield consisting of LeSean McCoy and Reggie Bush. Then you add 2nd year starting QB Tyrod Taylor with his duel threat abilities, their athleticism can be a problem for the division and the league. Add in Sammy Watkins on the the outside as their No. 1 WR and you have quietly one of the most dangerous offenses in the league. But how will coach Rex Ryan coach that up? Being a defensive minded and gifted coach, will he trust in offensive coordinator Greg Roman( he did have at one time Colin Kaepernick playing at the peak of his career in San Francisco)? Tyrod Taylor could be in for a huge breakout season if the game plays out as it should, the Bills should end their playoff drought and get a wild card spot. After all of the injuries and losses due to suspensions on defense, it’s imperative that the offense carries the load. Prediction 10-6

 

 Miami Dolphins

Record in 2015: 6-10

Key Player: Defensive Tackle- Ndamukong Suh

Player to watch: Running Back- Arian Foster

Outlook: If I told you that the Miami Dolphins haven’t won a playoff game since 2000, how fast would you google it? Done; fact! It’s crazy to think that Ryan Tannahill is trying to replace Dan Marino just for pure relevance, because remember, Marino didn’t win a ring. The Dolphins started a crazy draft night with the Laremy Tunsil social media debacle and in the bigger picture may have gotten a steal. Learn a lesson early in life and it’s rarely repeated. Hopefully this season the Dolphins can learn some offensive continuity as a defense lead by Ndamukong Suh, Cameron Wake, Mario Williams and Rashad Jones will certainly keep the Fins in games late. Prediction: 6-10

 

 New England Patriots

Record in 2015: 12-4

Key Player: Tight End- Rob Gronkowski

Player to watch: Defensive End- Chris Long

Outlook: The Patriots have had dominance within the division that tops in NFL history and will continue this season. Once the Pats can take the early season heat of having Tom Brady out, they will go on a highway-to-hell tour and the league better prepare for it. Brady will come out so angry with a Belichick plan and unleash his fury on the league. If you’re in any type of pool, go Pats weeks 5 and beyond. Jimmy Garoppolo will have his work cut out for him and will be looking for Rob Gronkowski. When “Gronk” is the on the field his dominance opens everything for Danny Amandola and Julian Edleman on the outside. Look for an exciting potential Super Bowl run and MVP season from Tom Brady. Prediction: 11-5

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