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Breaking Down the NFC South

In the last article we took a look at the NFC North and East divisions, now we will look at
the NFC south and see how it will match up.

NFC South: Atlanta, Carolina, New Orleans and Tampa Bay

Jan 2, 2022; Orchard Park, New York, USA; Atlanta Falcons tight end Kyle Pitts (8) walks off the field following the game against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

It’s no secret that the Falcons used to be one of the hot teams in the NFL about a
decade ago, but a lot of things have changed since then and Atlanta has some talent on
their team but in one of the toughest divisions to use that talent. With the recent trade of
Matt Ryan to the Indianapolis Colts, the team from Georgia couldn’t be in a tougher spot. After last year’s draft of TE Kyle Pitts, who has really proven himself after
his rookie season, the Falcons are looking to Marcus Mariota at the QB position or so
he thinks. A lot of people were wondering what Mariota was going to bring to the table
after signing a two-year deal with Atlanta, but with the 2022 draft, the Falcons selected
Desmond Ridder from the University of Cincinnati. This still has Atlanta fans
questioning, will the Heisman trophy winner from Oregon be the 1st string? Or could the
rookie be getting the starting spot even after Atlanta signed Mariota? Atlanta opens up
their season against division rival New Orleans at home where they could pull a fast one
and steal the first game of the season from the team down in the bayou.

Jun 8, 2022; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers running back Christian McCaffrey drills during Carolina Panthers minicamp at Bank of America Stadium Practice Facility. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

The Panthers have had a rough off season, trading players around and making moves
to try and fix their team as fast as they can for the upcoming season. Carolina started
out last year by adding QB Cam Newton to the roster after he was released from New England to try and get a spark back to the team for some wins. Unfortunately, Carolina
has had a rough past ever since their trip to the Super Bowl in 2015.
They have only
made the playoffs once and have relied way too much on star RB Christian McCafferey.
McCafferey came into the NFL and made an impact quickly but has had trouble staying
healthy and has gotten injured just about every season he has been pro. With their past
draft, Carolina took an OT to try and help make holes for McCafferey to get through,
and possibly gain more yards to help further the team’s success. Carolina plays against
their newly traded for QB’s old team, the Cleveland Browns for the first game of the year.
Baker Mayfield was acquired in a trade where Carolina sent a 5th rounder in exchange
for Mayfield, where hopefully he can make an impact on a new team, but will have to
show it and get the depth chart spot away from Sam Darnold. Carolina has a lot of work
to be made but they can definitely make a run for the Wild Card spot if they can get
everything worked out.

ORLANDO, FLORIDA – JANUARY 26: Alvin Kamara #41 of the New Orleans Saints points to the photographers as he is introduced before the 2020 NFL Pro Bowl at Camping World Stadium on January 26, 2020 in Orlando, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)

New Orleans definitely has the talent to make a playoff run, but can they get everything
figured out on the offensive side of things? The Saints had an incredible team a few
seasons ago, with Veteran QB Drew Brees leading the way, Alvin Kamara tearing up
the backfield with his remarkable running ability and Michael Thomas with his strategic
and impeccable route running. Again though, that was a few seasons ago. The Saints
have not necessarily had horrible seasons, but not seasons like they should be having.
With their remarkable defense that is coming together and most of their offense coming
back healthy this year, the Saints should have a good shot at the division title this year.
They just signed Jameis Winston to a new deal and with his height and ability to throw the ball, New Orleans should be just fine. After Kamara serves his short suspension, he
will be back and ready to keep doing what he does best, and Michael Thomas is
returning as well, after having ankle surgery that was supposed to bring him back in
October of last year, but decided it was best to continue rehab and become healthier to
play longer. New Orleans starts off the season in Atlanta to take down their division
rival, in what hopes to be a positive start to the season.

Creator: Dylan Buell | Credit: Getty Images Copyright: 2021 Dylan Buell

The Buccaneers have had a promising last couple of seasons. One of them being a
Super Bowl victory and another, a small playoff run to try and make it back to back
Super Bowls that was cut very short by the eventual Super Bowl winners, the Los Angeles Rams.
With Tom Brady retiring and then coming back out of retirement, Tampa Bay looks for
another shot at what could be another Super Bowl run with the G.O.A.T himself leading
the way after many unsuccessful seasons they have had before him going through
multiple coaches and players. Having a great defense and a good backfield as well as
strong receivers, Tom Brady and the Bucs should have no issue taking the division and
the NFC championship back to Tampa Bay and making it to another Super Bowl. The
fans also wonder, when is Tom Brady going to retire, because he has that contract with
Fox Sports that spans over 10 years as the lead analyst for $375 million. The
Buccaneers open up the season in Dallas where they should have no problems
securing a victory, since the Cowboys struggle to figure out how to beat big name

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