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Rodgers Down, Division left wide open.

This past Sunday, Aaron Rodgers went down with a season ending collarbone injury.
With no initial quarterback resolution, the Packers, who looked like a for sure playoff team, now stand with a huge question mark under center.  As for the division, The Vikings sit at 4-2 tied with the Packers.  The  underachieving Lions are 3-3, and the Bears are at 2-4 with Mitchell Trubisky grabbing his first win as a starter this past weekend.   Simply put, its anyone’s race to win.

First, here’s how each team’s next three weeks look:

Packers: Week 7-  vs Saints   Week 8-  BYE   Week 9- vs Lions

Vikings: Week 7-  vs Ravens   Week 8-  @ Browns  Week 9- BYE

Lions:  Week 7- BYE   Week 8- vs Steelers   Week 9- @ Packers

Bears: Week 7- vs Panthers  Week 8- @ Saints  Week 9- BYE

For the Packers, their bye week will be a much-needed week of recovery.  The only thing in the way is Drew Brees and a Saints team who exploded for 52 points against the Lions this past week.  After their bye comes a huge showdown with a the Lions at home.  I think this will be enough time for the Packers to find a quarterback who can at least give them a chance in games, and the Lions don’t look nearly as good as many predicted coming into the season.  Look for the Packers to be 5-3 at the halfway point.

The Vikings are shaping up to be the favorite at this point, mainly because of their defense.  As for their offense, it has been devastated by injuries to open the season.  Dalvin Cook is out for the season, and Sam Bradford’s status remains uncertain.  The only good news is Teddy Bridgewater’s return to the practice field this week.  If Bridgewater can return in the next few weeks, the Vikings should take control of this division in the near future.

The Lions have possibly been the biggest disappointment in the NFL this season.  They have a great offense, but it only shows up in the fourth quarter.  Matthew Stafford has always been known for leading the Lions to come from behind victories, but these days it looks as if they are okay with going down by two or three possessions in the first half.  This isn’t working for the Lions and if they want to make a move in this division, that has to change fast, along with their struggling defense.

The Bear’s finally pulled the trigger with Trubisky and he earned his team a win in his second start.  Jordan Howard continues to carry the load for this offense in desperate need of a star wide receiver.  The defense played well against the Ravens considering two of their touchdowns came off special teams returns.  Definitely an outsider chance at the postseason, but the league is full of parity this year, and if Trubisky can get going and find himself some receivers, this team has second half potential.  Expect the Bears at 3-5 at the halfway point.

Projected Mid-season standings:

Vikings: 6-2

Packers: 5-3

Lions: 4-4

Bears: 3-5

Projected Final Standings:

Vikings: 10-6

Packers: 8-8

Lions: 8-8

Bears: 7-9

 

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