Last week we looked at five teams who were quietly making their way into playoff contention for the NFL Super Bowl.
This week is a role reversal, having a glimpse at the teams who have proved to be disappointing so far.
Here are my top five sides, in a manner of speaking.
5. Cleveland Browns
We weren’t expecting the Browns to follow in the footsteps of their NBA brothers the Cavaliers, but we thought there may at least be at least one win on the board. New head coach Hue Jackson was seen as the saviour pre-season, yet he has to turn around a team that has a turning circle of a barge.
Washington Redskins failed quarterback Robert Griffin III was brought in to alleviate their issues behind centre. He lasted one game before injury hit. Veteran Josh McCown took over and was far from impressive and now they have turned to rookie Cody Kessler, who may miss the rest of the season due to multiple concussions.
Former quarterback Terrelle Pryor has turned out to be a good target for 724 yards, with the next best wide receiver being rookie Corey Coleman at 270.
It says a lot for a side when you’re 30th of 32 for points for, but also 31st for points against. Hopefully Jackson wears brown pants to work from now on.
4. Carolina Panthers
They were oh so close to winning their first evert title last season on the back of Cam “Superman” Newton’s outstanding MVP season.
Newton currently sits 22nd on the overall season passing yards with 2186 and is equal 20th with 11 passing TDs. The dab machine has the third lowest completion percentage in the competition with 56.7%.
He is not entirely to blame for the franchise, but his dip in numbers illustrates how vital he was to last year’s outstanding run. Only 268 rushing yards with four touchdowns shows his running is not as fierce as it was.
Receiver Kelvin Benjamin was supposed improve the attack upon his return from injury, however overall the yards have not been great. Running back Jonathon Stewart looks like he’s slowing down, and now defensive leader Luke Kuechley, who leads his team tackles by almost 30, is set to be sidelined with injury.
Overall a disappointing season for Panthers fans.
3. Arizona Cardinals
Carson Palmer must have cuts on his head because he’s undoubtedly been scratching it a lot. What happened to the side that were only one win away from the last Super Bowl?
Their offence was an enormous threat and this year they have gained just 2632 yards via the air, much lower than expected. For such an offensive weapon, their total of 226 points across 10 games ranks just 18th of the 32 teams.
The legend Larry Fitzgerald is leading the way via receptions again with 749, while running back David Johnson has excelled as a duel threat, with 510 receiving yards to go with his 863 rushing yards.
Former Patriots linebacker Chandler Jones has been a solid pick up with eight sacks and 26 tackles, however star safety Tyrann “The Honey Badger” Matthew’s injury issues have hurt the Card’s ability to be nasty on defence.
2. Green Bay Packers
This one hurts as I stuck my neck out pre-season to proclaim the Cheese Heads could be a smokey for the title. Fast forward to now and they are sitting 4-6 and their star quarterback Aaron Rodgers looks a shadow of his former self.
Like last season injuries to key players have hurt. In their match against the Atlanta Falcons, the Packers were missing eight first choice starters. I don’t care who you are, that is going to have an impact.
So many young players have been thrust into important starting positions, especially on defence, means the team hasn’t gelled as well as they would have liked.
1. Indianapolis Colts
Having Andrew Luck back from injury was meant to be the driving force to sending the Colts into the playoffs. They may still do so, but that will only be if Luck continues to carry his side.
Three late come from behind victories by bare margins were orchestrated by Luck and in general the Colts have not hit top gear. While Indianapolis rank seven for points gained this season, 26th out of 32, conceding a total of 273 points.
They have the scoring power, but if they can’t stop opponents from hitting the end zone then they won’t be featuring in playoff action.