Around the Hill (9/9)

Mike McMaster


Picking a Super Bowl champion in September is like trying to pick out a Christmas tree in July. It’s pretty hard to get a winner. But I know a Charlie Brown tree when I see one. This year, the tree is the New York Jets and Rex Ryan is Pigpen. It could be a Hard Knocks life for the Jets this season, but it’s going to get harder behind a sophomore quarterback and a running back who has never played a full season.

Don’t pay attention to the hype. Remember, the Jets were a Curtis Painter away from missing the playoffs in 2009.

Look out for the Dolphins to win the AFC East. And don’t be surprised if they make a run deep into the playoffs.

Harry Raymond

Managing Editor

After a heartbreaking 51-45 overtime playoff loss to the Arizona Cardinals, the Green Bay Packers should rebound in a big way this year. Aaron Rodgers is the name on everyone’s lips this preseason and for good reason. Despite having a mediocre offensive line over the last two seasons, Rodgers managed to become the first QB in NFL history to open his career as a starter with consecutive 4,000 yard seasons. This year, the Cheese Heads have an array of offensive weapons. Greg Jennings, Donald Driver, and James Jones, along with TE Jermichael Finley, make up an explosive receiving core while Ryan Grant should quietly put up another 1,200 yards on the ground.

Their Achilles heel could be their defense, which forced the fewest turnovers in the NFL in 2009, though it was one of the youngest defenses in the league. With the athleticism of young linebackers A.J. Hawk and Clay Matthews along with the veteran leadership of Charles Woodson, the Packers defense should take a big step forward. If they can tighten up their D, Aaron Rodgers will be hoisting the Lombardi Trophy this January while Brett Favre cries at home like a 15-year old girl who just got braces.

Michael LeClair

Sports Editor

The 2010 NFL season will be historic and memorable. Players will set new records and new standards for future generations of athletes, but that will not be the reason why 2010 will be remembered. This year will be the first time a team wins the Super Bowl in their home stadium.

I am talking, of course, about the Dallas Cowboys. In 2009, they made a great run at the end of the season, but ended up falling humiliatingly short against the Minnesota Vikings in the Divisional Round of the NFC playoffs.

A lot of that performance was chalked up to a lack of motivation on Dallas’s part, combined with the “winning mentality” of Brett Favre. But now, Favre’s a year older, and last year’s Super Bowl champions, New Orleans, will almost undoubtedly suffer from the notorious championship hangover that plagues teams across the sporting world.

Plus, America’s Team will have that additional incentive to win the Super Bowl in front of their home fans, something that should never be discounted with a good team. 2010 will prove to be the year that Tony Romo establishes himself as an elite quarterback and he will lead the Cowboys to the Lombardi Trophy come February.