2. NFC Team Regression
While some teams took a step forward this offseason, other teams took a step or two backward. The Dallas Cowboys lost several key playmakers, while Dak Prescott looked more ordinary than extraordinary last season. The Washington Redskins added Alex Smith, but they lost Kirk Cousins among others. In the desert, the Arizona Cardinals are starting over at quarterback with the retirement of Carson Palmer.
Turnover is going to happen every year to every team. The key to consistency is internal development and replacing the lost production. The New England Patriots have been the NFL model of consistency for nearly two decades. They have shown they are not afraid to trade anyone, no matter how large the production is, but they always find a way to replace that lost production.
The NFC features several teams that were either in the playoffs or right outside of it that regressed, but they don’t appear to have replaced their lost production. The Cowboys are now slated to trot out Deonte Thompson and Terrance Williams as their top two receivers. Arizona added Sam Bradford and Josh Rosen, but neither has the pedigree of Palmer. The Packers will move up the conference due to the war of attrition.