The Patriots won this division last season just like they seem to do every season. But with Brady out the first four games is there anyone that can unseat them as AFC East champs?
New England Patriots
2015 record: 12-4
The Patriots are without Tom Brady for the first four weeks, but that shouldn’t prevent them from winning this division. They still have some very good playmakers in Julian Edelman, Rob Gronkowski, and the returning Dion Lewis. With these weapons, Jimmy Garropolo should be good enough to win the Patriots at least 2-3 games. They bolstered their defensive line witht the additions of Terrence Knighton and Chris Long which should assure their defense is at the very least solid.
Projected record: 11-5
2015 record: 8-8
While they only finished 8-8 last year, there’s a lot to be encouraged by from the 2015 season. Tyrod Taylor gave them the best quarterback play they’ve seen in a long time and maybe they’ve finally found that quarterback they’ve desperately needed. He’s surrounded by exciting talents like LeSean McCoy and Sammy Watkins and if those guy are healthier this year, then you can expect better things from their offense. The Rex Ryan defense will at least be decent. You should count on that.
Projected record: 9-7
2015 record: 6-10
The Dolphins were disappointing last season, but what’s new? The Dolphins fired their coach midseason, but that didn’t really help matters get better. But we expect them to be at least better this season than they were last. Especially with some new additions on defense. Still not a playoff team, but they’re making progress, albeit slow progress. But if they don’t reach the postseason this year, then how much longer can they stick with Tannehill as their QB?
Projected record: 7-9
New York Jets
2015 record: 10-6
Yes the Jets went 10-6 last season, but that was with Fitzpatrick having arguably the best season of his career. Sorry Jets fans, but we don’t expect him to put up those kind of numbers again. His go-to receiver, Brandon Marshall, isn’t getting any younger. Even with the addition of Forte, who himself is getting up in age, we see the Jets scoring much fewer points this year. The D-line is still great but they lost Cromartie in the secondary and Revis isn’t the same player he was in his first stint with the Jets. This defense won’t be able to make up for their offensive shortcomings.