With a quarter of the season down so far, here are my early season projections for how the season will play out;
NFC North Champ: Minnesota Vikings - The Vikings are atop the MBC power rankings and after their trade for potential MVP Carson Wentz, they will have too much talent for the upstart Lions to overtake for NFC crown. The Lions will continue their hot start and do enough to snag one of the two NFC wildcard spots.
AFC North Champ: Cincinnati Bengals - The first domino of this race will fall week 6 when the Bengals/Steelers face each other. The winner of this game will have a leg up on the other team, but I feel it will ultimately come down to their week 17 matchup where the Bengals will upset the Steelers and take the AFC North crown sending the Steelers to be the top wildcard team.
NFC East Champ: Philadelphia Eagles - Too much talent for the Redskins to overtake despite getting off to a fast start for Washington. Despite missing out on the NFC East, Washington will grab the last wildcard spot in the NFC.
AFC East Champ: New York Jets - The race between two teams(Jets/Buffalo) that most thought would be irrelevant for the first few years. Ultimately, the Jets have been 2-0 under Lamar Jackson and will start to pull away from the Bills for the division. I do believe for the second year in a row, the Bills will do just enough to squeak into the playoffs.
NFC South Champ: Atlanta Falcons - Falcons are off to a slow 2-3 start but I think there is just too much talent for them not to be able to overtake the division.
AFC South Champ: Houston Texans - Texans are off to a fast start and are starting to pull away from the rest of the division. The Jaguars have a chance in week 7 to pull closer in the division during their head to head matchup, but will have to continue to improve to turn their week 17 matchup into a division title game.
NFC West Champ: Los Angeles Rams - Seattle has done a good job hanging with the Rams during the earlier start to the season, but the Rams have too much talent and in week 5 came away with a 22-13 win to put them in great position to start pulling away in the division.
AFC West Champ: Kansas City Chiefs - The Chiefs have already beaten the Chargers and Broncos this season. I don't see any of the offenses in the AFC West improving enough to keep up with Mahomes and all of his weapons.
NFC Wildcard: Detroit Lions, Washington Redskins
AFC Wildcard: Pittsburgh Steelers, Buffalo Bills
MVP/OPOY: Todd Gurley, RB, Rams - Gurley is the workhorse for the Rams and will get the ball more than any other playmaker in the league. Hunt and Bell are off to great starts as well, but just don't get the ball at a pace to hang with Gurley. Wentz at QB is the only one in position to challenge Gurley, but will need to limit his interceptions while maintaining his big play ability to have a chance.
DPOY: Myles Garrett, DE, Browns - It's hard not to go with hometown current sack leader, Kerry Hyder Jr, but Garrett has much more talent and is more likely to consider his success in getting to the QB.
OROY: Lamar Jackson, QB, Jets - Now that Jackson is starting on a new team he will have a chance to showcase his talents. Josh Allen, Derrius Guice and Calvin Ridley have the best chance to challenge Jackson.
DROY: Shaquem Griffin, OLB, Seattle - Shaquem has carved out a role in the Seahawks defense and already snagged 3 interceptions. No one has really established themselves as a front runner, so this is probably the hardest one to pick.
Coach of the Year: Coach Bird - They will be the top seed and top team in the power rankings.