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NFC North Preview: 2013 NFL

200715_27If you’ve been keeping track at all, the NFC North has only won one Super Bowl title in the past 12 years (Green Bay, Super Bowl XLV) and Chicago, Detroit and Minnesota have only one championship between them. What they do have on their sides is raw star power.

The North has a real gem in the league’s top receiver, Calvin Johnson, superstar running back Adrian Peterson, who superseded his position last season in the field, and without question its top notch quarterback in Aaron Rodgers.  If those players weren’t enough, the league also has Julius Peppers, Clay Matthews, Jared Allen and Brandon Marshall. The NFC North is certainly a force to be reckoned with in terms of talent.

While Green Bay might be the favored for the 2013 season, there are so many possibilities with the way that this season could end up.   There are probably four possibly playoff teams and on the flip side, at least three that could totally tank.

Here’s a peak at the NFC North Division:

Chicago Bears-

With the hire of new head coach Trestman, a sea change in approach for the Bears has been launched.  Trestman got rid of former coach Lovie Smith’s defense-first philosophy and implemented a CFL-honed offensive stylings.  Things should go better for Cutler this year, but with so much change, anything is possible. The Bears will be quite formidable with the football, especially with Martellus Bennett.  While defense last year was a top 5 set, Trestman has his work cut out for him this year.  Things look very good for the Bears in 2013.

Detroit Lions:

The Lions should be pretty middle of the pack this season.  Hopefully somewhere between their 2012 and 2011 seasons. The players to watch are Stafford, Johnson and Bush, and especially Ryan Broyles.  The offensive line and defense are still worrisome.  While this seasons seems markedly improved over last year’s, playoff potential still seems questionable.

Green Bay Packers:

Thought Green Bay won a second straight division title, last season was annoying for the Packers. They couldn’t match up against the NFL’s elite, ending in a 45-31 playoff loss to San Francisco.  While they are down a couple decent players this year, like Jennings, the Packers seem to be better poised.   GB added a few superb run-game players, and Rodgers will be that much more of a threat. Green Bay once again seems to be the the team to beat in this division and an almost expected Super Bowl contender.

Minnesota Vikings:

Adrian Peterson totally ran the show last year.  While he is a phenomenal player, the rest of the team needs to pull their weight if they want to keep ahead of the Bears and the Lions and beat the Packers in order to become Super Bowl contenders.  Things are stacking up well for the Vikings, if Ponder and Cassel can keep the team in line and quit with the excuses.  The Vikings are capable to go the distance this season, but there is not much room for error.

What do you think of how the teams are looking in the NFC North for 2013?