This is my choice for “Worst Division in Football” for 2008. You can argue that the NFL Worst is trying to repeat, but they had stiff competition from the NFC South last year.
1) Seattle Seahawks – Because two of the other three teams suck balls and I’m not gonna get suckered into jumping on the “Arizona’s gonna be good this year” bandwagon again. Maurice Morris is a glorified change-of-pace back thrust into a starring role because Shaun Alexander caught a mental disease that caused numerous bouts of self-tackleization. Julius Jones spent the last couple years of his time in Dallas listening to fans scream for Marion Barber. T.J. Duckett is, well, T.J. Duckett. This means Seattle will be no different than last year, and they may be worse, because Bobby Engram is hurt and out a couple months, which makes them thinner at WR. Esssentially, the Seahawks will win the division thanks to Matt Hasselbeck throwing in the range of 35-40 times a game and because the rest of their division stinks. Always bet against this team if they have to travel further east than St. Louis for a game (the sole exception would be when they go to Miami). This team is no better than 10-6 and winning the division at .500 is a possibility.
2) Arizona Cardinals – Mediocre as opposed to hopelessly bad. Barring injury or a surprise case of the clap, Matt Leinart will be starting under center, and if he can’t at least sweep the Rams and the 49ers with Anquan Boldin and Larry Fitzgerald as starting wideouts (we’d mention Edgerrin James, but are still waiting for him to show up in AZ), then he truly deserves to have Kurt Warner steal his snaps. 8-8 is an “at best” for this team.
3) San Francisco 49ers – When J.T. O’Sullivan has the inside track to be your starting QB, you’ve got problems. Mike Nolan should be fired after the season is done, when Mike Martz has burned through O’Sullivan, Alex Smith, and Shaun Hill in futile attempts to run his high-octane offense with old wide receivers and forgetting that Frank Gore exists (not that it would help with the Niners’ O-line.) This is the team that threw $80 million + at Nate Clements yet the secondary is still a problem.
4) St. Louis Rams – This position is predicated upon the likely scenario that Steven Jackson will not be showing up for the regular season in an understandable holdout (RBs need to get paid before their coaches run them down into retirement), thus, defenses will be able to peg the team by double-covering Torry Holt the entire game and daring Marc Bulger to throw it to someone else. I have $50 sitting on a bet that Scott Linehan will be fired during the season. The defense will be better with Chris Long learning and Adam Carriker developing, but there won’t be enough points to be competitive.