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Predicting the top 5 performing teams of the upcoming NFL season

NFL Team Cincinnati Bengals www.allproreels.com — Washington Football Team vs. Cincinnati Bengals from FedEx Field, Landover, MD, August 20, 2021 (All-Pro Reels Photography)

Following an offseason conquered by blockbuster trades, unexpected signings, and one monumental retirement, the 2023-24 NFL season is gearing up to be one the hardest to predict in reason memory. 

Teams like the reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs and the Super Bowl-losing Philadelphia Eagles haven’t suffered much roster turnover. Meanwhile, teams like the lowly New York Jets and the long-dismissed Detroit Lions have made a number of key signings that point to potential playoff runs. 

With the best teams suffering minimal losses and teams that were on the brink of the playoffs in 2022 making a splash in free agency and trades, it seems as though more teams than ever are ready to make a run in the playoffs. 

Despite this, there’s only going to be two conference championship winners and one Super Bowl winner. Thus, it helps to get an idea of which teams have the best chance of winning one of those titles by ranking their potential. We’ll start off with the fifth best team, and move onwards and conclude with who I believe will win the Super Bowl this season. 

5. New York Jets

The New York Jets have long been riding the quarterback carousel, moving through first round quarterback after first round quarterback with minuscule potential on their rosters. Lately though, the Jets have managed to build a solid roster – one focused around the franchise’s head coach Robert Saleh. 

Saleh and the Jets have had a rough go thus far despite the promising roster, but much of the blame could be placed on troubles at the quarterback position. Now, with the Jets’ moving closer and closer to the acquisition of star quarterback Aaron Rodgers, the Jets might finally solve the quarterbacking issue they’ve struggled with for over a decade. 

If Rodgers has anything left in the tank, he’ll have a fair shot at a playoff run in New York. Questions remain about whether or not the Jets promising yet inexperienced lineup can combat the loaded AFC for a Super Bowl ticket. 

If they can, Rodgers will have a chance to follow in the recently retired footsteps of Tom Brady and win a Super Bowl in his first year with a new team.

 

4. Buffalo Bills

The Buffalo Bills are an interesting case. They haven’t gotten any worse, but they haven’t necessarily gotten any better either. 

The biggest questions with the Bills surround their running game and the ball security of their quarterback Josh Allen. Tied for first in the league in interceptions with 17, Allen struggled with ball security throughout the season. 

On the ground, the Bills struggled to maintain any sort of consistent rushing attack – something that likely played into Allen’s high interception count. Without a firm running game, the Bills have consistently relied on Allen’s arm as their only way of moving the ball downfield. 

Unless they can fix these issues, it seems unlikely that the Bills will take the extra step and finally win a Super Bowl with Allen.

 

3. Philadelphia Eagles

I firmly expect the Eagles to visit the Super Bowl again in 2025. Simply put, there’s little to no competition in the NFC for the Super Bowl ticket. As long as the Eagles can maintain quarterback Jalen Hurts’ great play, they’ll likely glide through the NFC playoff race and reach the Super Bowl for a second consecutive season.

2. Kansas City Chiefs

The Chiefs are another team that didn’t get terribly worse but simultaneously hasn’t done much to get better. Their greatest losses were wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and left tackle Orlando Brown Jr. 

Schuster, the team’s number-one receiver last season behind tight end Travis Kelce, has signed with the New England Patriots. There now stands a gaping hole at the wide receiver position due to this loss. 

The loss of Brown will likely plague the offensive line this upcoming season. While they managed to sign Jaawan Taylor to replace Brown at left tackle, Taylor has only ever played right tackle. Questions remain regarding his ability to adjust quickly, along with how well he’ll compare to Brown in general. 

While quarterback Patrick Mahomes’ generational talent as a quarterback and head coach Andy Reid’s play calling will inevitably lead the team to the playoffs, I’d hesitate to call them a sure thing to win a playoff game. 

With their top receiving target, Travis Kelce, currently 33 years old, it’s hard to say that the Chiefs will be able to come out atop of a crowded AFC playoff race. 

That being said, the Chiefs are the Chiefs. Patrick Mahomes is Patrick Mahomes. Andy Reid is Andy Reid. They’ll find their way to the playoffs despite the holes. 

1. Cincinnati Bengals

The Bengals seem ready to make the next step, and thus I believe they’ll win the Super Bowl in the upcoming season. They have arguably the best receiving core in the league, an all-star running back, a solid defense and a revamped offensive line. 

The Bengals’ biggest obstacle thus far has been that offensive line. Considering their recent signing of previously mentioned left tackle Orlando Brown Jr., quarterback Joe Burrow will finally have some blindside protection. 

The Bengals lost  Super Bowl LVI to the Los Angeles Rams just one season ago, and they seem poised to make a return this season and with a vengeance. 

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