2020 NFL Preview: A Quiet Adieu to 16-Game Seasons

Can the Chiefs become the first team to repeat as Super Bowl champs since the 2003-04 Patriots?

It’s a shame it had to end this way.

The 2020 NFL season already felt like it was going to be unique, ever since the whispers of a potential 17-game season began last fall. The noise grew louder as CBA talks heated up after the Chiefs’ Super Bowl LIV win, and came to a crescendo at the worst possible time. On March 15, as the world was scrambling to buy toilet paper, hand sanitizer, and cleaning wipes, lost in the shuffle was the announcement that the new agreement came to pass. Yet another black eye in this “pile it on” 2020.

So here we are, a day away from kickoff. In what figures (not officially, but in all likelihood) to be the final, logical NFL season of 16 games, the season will begin in front of fans — but only about 16,000 of them at normally-raucous Arrowhead Stadium, celebrating the 2019 champs from Kansas City.

The question now becomes, will this final 16-game slate actually be 16 games? In this prison sentence known as the Covid Era, can the NFL season survive without a single postponement (which could result from something as benign as an asymptomatic locker room attendant). We will soon find out.

Oh, yeah, but like, what about football itself? Well, we can dream (I know I will). I created my own schedule, and at the time began to fantasize how the season would play out before we realized most of it would be in empty arenas. So here goes another year of DraftAmerica predictions, even though this is a year when every sports title will have some sort of asterisk and really doesn’t even feel like normal sports. But I want to pick a Super Bowl champion for 2020, while still holding out hope Raymond James Stadium will be packed to the gills (perhaps with Dr. Zach Binney’s suggestion of 70,000+ vaccinated front-line workers?) on February 7, 2021. This, of course, to culminate a now-14-team playoff field. Don’t even get me started…

So without further ado, here goes (*-denotes wild card team):


AFC East

1. New England (10-6)

2. Buffalo (8-8)*

3. Miami (6-10)

4. New York Jets (4-12)

AFC North

1. Pittsburgh (13-3)

2. Baltimore (11-5)*

3. Cleveland (9-7)*

4. Cincinnati (3-13)

AFC South

1. Indianapolis (10-6)

2. Tennessee (8-8)

3. Houston (6-10)

4. Jacksonville (2-14)

AFC West

1. Kansas City (12-4)

2. L.A. Chargers (7-9)

3. Las Vegas (6-10)

4. Denver (3-13)

NFC East

1. Dallas (12-4)

2. Philadelphia (10-6)*

3. New York Giants (4-12)

4. Washington (3-13)

NFC North

1. Minnesota (12-4)

2. Green Bay (10-6)

3. Chicago (7-9)

4. Detroit (7-9)

NFC South

1. New Orleans (12-4)

2. Atlanta (11-5)*

3. Tampa Bay (10-6)

4. Carolina (4-12)

NFC West

1. Arizona (12-4)

2. San Francisco (10-6)*

3. Seattle (8-8)

4. L.A. Rams (6-10)



AFC Wild Card Round

Kansas City 36, Buffalo 18

Indianapolis 24, Cleveland 14

Baltimore 27, New England 13

NFC Wild Card Round

New Orleans 31, Philadelphia 16

San Francisco 16, Minnesota 14

Dallas 24, Atlanta 10

AFC Divisional Round

Pittsburgh 19, Baltimore 12

Kansas City 38, Indianapolis 27

NFC Divisional Round

Arizona 23, San Francisco 17

New Orleans 29, Dallas 10

Championship Round

New Orleans 23, Arizona 16

Pittsburgh 20, Kansas City 16

Super Bowl LV

New Orleans 38, Pittsburgh 36

MVP: Drew Brees

Be the first to comment on "2020 NFL Preview: A Quiet Adieu to 16-Game Seasons"

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.