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Ranking The AFC 2022-23


corta765
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We are at the point rosters are more or less set outside of some camp battles and you have a general idea of who most teams are. Given the moves this offseason across the conference and league I can't see much happening in preseason that will change peoples opinions. I did this last year ranking each conference with a little blurb for each team. Today is the AFC and later the NFC this week. Agree, disagree, tell me I am idiot and the reason for all of the worlds issue, whatever lay out your thoughts lol:

 

The Class of the AFC:

Baltimore- Fun fact they were 8-3 and the 1 seed before the plague destroyed their team in 2021. Whether you love and don't love Lamar (count me as love) they have a strong defense and will impose their will. I believe they are due for a breakthrough postseason wise sooner then later

Buffalo- Super Bowl or bust no way around it between the addition of Von Miller and overall depth that has been added

Cincinnati- I think this Cincy team is better then last years but the record may only move up to 11-6 because of the division and conference. Regardless they are an explosive group

Kansas City- Tyreek takes a scary factor away on offense, but Mahomes is still there and until they are out they are always what feels like the team to beat after 4 straight AFC titles.

Los Angeles Chargers- Talent wise they can match anyone and they missed the playoffs off of playoff tiebreakers in 2021. I always question what they can do as ownership has forever been cheap and they have no homefield advantage in LA which feels like it will catch them. Either way if you said they are in the SB come February I wouldn't be the least bit shocked.

 

Playoff Contenders

Denver- Could Russ and crew take the crown year 1? Absolutely, but I think their best football will be in a year or two as a new coach and system is established. Regardless with Russ they are a playoff team.

Las Vegas- If you think they should be up higher I wouldn't disagree. But I would like to see the Raiders do more then just a wildcard appearance as that has been it with Carr.

Miami- Regardless of your belief in Tua (I think he's average with flashes) he just has a stacked lineup around him that he just needs to do enough to make the Phins a playoff team. Biggest issue is their schedule is a buzz saw up and down.

 

Cleveland*- They are their own category as no one for sure knows how long Watson plays. On paper, strictly paper they are incredibly solid at every spot and Watson pushes them up. But football is loaded with teams who on paper look great and flame out because of pressure and noise. I think they lose Watson for 12 games and limp to a 7-10 season as the pressure and noise mixed with no Watson beats them down. Could they do better? 100% but I honestly think no one has a solid read here.

 

Could be a playoff team, Could be 6-11 

Indianapolis Colts- If you buy Matt Ryan then they are a playoff contender, if you think he is past his prime they need the collective whole to carry this team. I am not a fan of their WR corp and I don't know how much more Taylor can do to carry the load.

Jacksonville Jaguars- Doug Pederson has take a young QB and went places before and now has one who pure talent wise is better then Wentz. I can easily see the Jags offense becoming good pretty quick if they can help build Lawrence confidence and decision making up. Urban wrecked things so bad people forget the hype and talent T Law has. The major question is if the defense can go from being an EZ-Pass to something that can hang around in games. For the record they are my dark horse pick this year and I have them winning the South.

New England Patriots- I actually think Mac Jones is pretty decent and could have a better year. I also look at what NE surrounded him with and outside of a Marino type heroic performance they have a tall task to compete to the playoffs. BB can only do so much to cover their holes against an AFC loaded with fast aggressive offenses and defenses not based in 1990 conservative football.

Pittsburgh Steelers- Their skill position group on offense can make noise, can Mitch or Kenny drive the car fast enough to stay up with the rest of their division? The defense will do enough to keep them in games, it is on the offense being potent enough.

Tennessee Titans- There is data that Derrick Henry already has started to decline going back to last year. They look weaker across the board and while I love Bobby Woods he is not AJ Brown. Their playoff hopes hinge on the Colts staying neutral and winning the division. 

 

On To The Draft

Houston- A successful season could be 3-14 as Mills shows he can be the guy and the rookies develop OR Mills isn't the guy and the rest of the young roster improves while getting a top 3 pick for QB

NY Jets- They already had a daunting task before the Wilson injury with the way the AFC is. Now you hope Wilson shows tangible improvement in less games then desired played, the offense has some pep while the defense becomes a formidable unit, and they finish 5-11 while getting wins over MIA and NE at home.

Edited by corta765
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Title Contenders: Bills, Chiefs

Teams that could make the AFC Championship Game: Chargers, Bengals,

Teams that should make the playoffs: Broncos, Raiders, Ravens

Teams that could make the playoffs: Steelers, Titans, Dolphins, Jags

 

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31 minutes ago, corta765 said:

We are at the point rosters are more or less set outside of some camp battles and you have a general idea of who most teams are. Given the moves this offseason across the conference and league I can't see much happening in preseason that will change peoples opinions. I did this last year ranking each conference with a little blurb for each team. Today is the AFC and later the NFC this week. Agree, disagree, tell me I am idiot and the reason for all of the worlds issue, whatever lay out your thoughts lol:

 

The Class of the AFC:

Baltimore- Fun fact they were 8-3 and the 1 seed before the plague destroyed their team in 2021. Whether you love and don't love Lamar (count me as love) they have a strong defense and will impose their will. I believe they are due for a breakthrough postseason wise sooner then later

Buffalo- Super Bowl or bust no way around it between the addition of Von Miller and overall depth that has been added

Cincinnati- I think this Cincy team is better then last years but the record may only move up to 11-6 because of the division and conference. Regardless they are an explosive group

Kansas City- Tyreek takes a scary factor away on offense, but Mahomes is still there and until they are out they are always what feels like the team to beat after 4 straight AFC titles.

Los Angeles Chargers- Talent wise they can match anyone and they missed the playoffs off of playoff tiebreakers in 2021. I always question what they can do as ownership has forever been cheap and they have no homefield advantage in LA which feels like it will catch them. Either way if you said they are in the SB come February I wouldn't be the least bit shocked.

 

Playoff Contenders

Denver- Could Russ and crew take the crown year 1? Absolutely, but I think their best football will be in a year or two as a new coach and system is established. Regardless with Russ they are a playoff team.

Las Vegas- If you think they should be up higher I wouldn't disagree. But I would like to see the Raiders do more then just a wildcard appearance as that has been it with Carr.

Miami- Regardless of your belief in Tua (I think he's average with flashes) he just has a stacked lineup around him that he just needs to do enough to make the Phins a playoff team. Biggest issue is their schedule is a buzz saw up and down.

 

Cleveland*- They are their own category as no one for sure knows how long Watson plays. On paper, strictly paper they are incredibly solid at every spot and Watson pushes them up. But football is loaded with teams who on paper look great and flame out because of pressure and noise. I think they lose Watson for 12 games and limp to a 7-10 season as the pressure and noise mixed with no Watson beats them down. Could they do better? 100% but I honestly think no one has a solid read here.

 

Could be a playoff team, Could be 6-11 

Indianapolis Colts- If you buy Matt Ryan then they are a playoff contender, if you think he is past his prime they need the collective whole to carry this team. I am not a fan of their WR corp and I don't know how much more Taylor can do to carry the load.

Jacksonville Jaguars- Doug Pederson has take a young QB and went places before and now has one who pure talent wise is better then Wentz. I can easily see the Jags offense becoming good pretty quick if they can help build Lawrence confidence and decision making up. Urban wrecked things so bad people forget the hype and talent T Law has. The major question is if the defense can go from being an EZ-Pass to something that can hang around in games. For the record they are my dark horse pick this year and I have them winning the South.

New England Patriots- I actually think Mac Jones is pretty decent and could have a better year. I also look at what NE surrounded him with and outside of a Marino type heroic performance they have a tall task to compete to the playoffs. BB can only do so much to cover their holes against an AFC loaded with fast aggressive offenses and defenses not based in 1990 conservative football.

Pittsburgh Steelers- Their skill position group on offense can make noise, can Mitch or Kenny drive the car fast enough to stay up with the rest of their division? The defense will do enough to keep them in games, it is on the offense being potent enough.

Tennessee Titans- There is data that Derrick Henry already has started to decline going back to last year. They look weaker across the board and while I love Bobby Woods he is not AJ Brown. Their playoff hopes hinge on the Colts staying neutral and winning the division. 

 

On To The Draft

Houston- A successful season could be 3-14 as Mills shows he can be the guy and the rookies develop OR Mills isn't the guy and the rest of the young roster improves while getting a top 3 pick for QB

NY Jets- They already had a daunting task before the Wilson injury with the way the AFC is. Now you hope Wilson shows tangible improvement in less games then desired played, the offense has some pep while the defense becomes a formidable unit, and they finish 5-11 while getting wins over MIA and NE at home.

Can you imagine the chaos if the Cleveland Browns, led by Deshaun Watson, made it too the Super Bowl?

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1 minute ago, Rocky Landing said:

Can you imagine the chaos if the Cleveland Browns, led by Deshaun Watson, made it too the Super Bowl?


Honestly I can’t right now. It would be a very bad and sad situation 

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Tiers are kind of in order but not really.

 

Tier 1: Proven playoff winners

Bills, Bengals, Chiefs

Tier 2: Good shot at making the playoffs

Ravens, Chargers, Titans, Broncos, Raiders

Tier 3: playoff hopefuls

Browns, Dolphins, Colts, Patriots, Steelers

Tier 4: doo doo

Jete, Jags, Texans

 

Crazy to think that at least 1 (and probably more) of those teams in the first 2 tiers will miss the playoffs.

Edited by gobills404
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44 minutes ago, GoBills808 said:

Imo the Chargers are pretenders and Bengals miss the playoffs

 

Herbert's the real deal and has the same amount of head to head wins against the chiefs and Mahomes that Allen does. I'm not necessarily buying their SB hype because they haven't even been to the playoffs yet with Herbert but all the talent is there (on paper) for them to be among the league's elite teams.

 

Also I would be very surprised if the Bengals miss the playoffs unless they get hit with serious injuries like the Ravens did last year. Speaking of the Ravens too me they are a team everyone is sleeping on and I see them among the leagues elite teams this year if they are relatively healthy again.

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In the AFC, and especially in the east, there is the Buffalo Bills, and then a bunch of other teams, that I struggle to remember their names…, 😂🍸🚬

 

Go Bills!!!

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IMO Raiders are probably going to be much better than people expect which is hard to say about a WC team from the previous season. Everyone talking about Chargers and Broncos taking down Chiefs but Raiders could be one of those grimy teams that sneaks up everyone.

 

Jones/Crosby easily the best DE combo in the league and Adams will put that offense over the top. Still think Carr is much better than people give him credit for too and is the best QB McDaniels has worked with not named Tom Brady.

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33 minutes ago, gobills404 said:

Tiers are kind of in order but not really.

 

Tier 1: Proven playoff winners

Bills, Bengals, Chiefs

Tier 2: Good shot at making the playoffs

Ravens, Chargers, Titans, Broncos, Raiders

Tier 3: playoff hopefuls

Browns, Dolphins, Colts, Patriots, Steelers

Tier 4: doo doo

Jete, Jags, Texans

 

Crazy to think that at least 1 (and probably more) of those teams in the first 2 tiers will miss the playoffs.

 

I think the Bengals could take a step back this year like the Bills did last year. 

 

I also think the Titans miss the playoffs.

Edited by Big Turk
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Pretty good list.

The AFC is loaded, but I definitely think Buffalo should be the favorite.

 

The Chiefs have been the class of the AFC for the last 3 seasons, but I think this is the season we finally pass them.  With Patrick Mahomes and Andy Reid, they will still be a very dangerous offense.  But without Tyreek Hill, they will lack some of that downfield explosion.  They probably can't afford those games where they fall asleep for 2-3 quarters, and still manage to win.  That plus the brutal AFC West competition will cost them homefield at Arrowhead.

 

 

The Patriots will challenge the Jets for last place.  Last year's resurgence was a fluke, always catching teams at the worst times.  The roster is not very good, and I think Mac Jones has already peaked (think Baker Mayfield 2.0).  Continuity is underrated, and they will really miss Josh McDaniels.  Bill Belichick is a great coach, but he's also an @$$, and I think his attitude won't fly when his team is losing.

 

 

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7 minutes ago, HOUSE said:

There is only one legit team in the AFC, the rest are just fluff

 

Are you really just going to leave us hanging like that?    :)

 

I think the Bills are the favorites for a reason, but the AFC is tough. We just need to go out and win the games. It sounds so simple!  We may or may not make it to the SB, but it should be an entertaining ride. Do NOT panic during the rough patches. Peak in the playoffs! 

 

 

(Remember when the mere idea of playoffs seemed like a stretch?) 

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Here is my order.  This may not be how the season records go but it is how I see the teams. The AFC West might have 4 teams with 9 wins and all 4 teams will be in playoff contention right up until the end.  The Colts might win 12+ games because their division is terrible yet will be the worst Div winner.  If Ryan is terrible they could still win the division with an 8-9 record.  I gave the Browns an asterisk. My guess is Watson is suspended for the year and they win 6 games.  But if his 6 game suspension is upheld, they can challenge for a WC spot. I would have had Jets at 11 prior to Wilson injury.  This is the year the Patriots hit rock bottom.  They will struggle to win 5 games this year.  

 

1. Bills

2. Chargers

3. Ravens

4. Chiefs

5. Bengals

6. Broncos

7. Raiders

8. Colts

9. Dolphins

10. Browns*

11. Titans

12. Jags

13. Jets

14. Patriots

15. Steelers

16. Houston

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