When it’s still a few months away from the start of the NFL regular season, it can be sometimes hard to predict who’s going to be among the best teams in the league. However, it’s actually a bit easier to predict who will be among the worst, especially if it’s past the NFL Draft and they still have a weak roster. With that in mind, here are my early predictions for who will be the five worst teams in the NFL in the 2017 season, and thus the teams who will be picking first in the 2018 Draft.
5. Cleveland Browns
It may actually be surprising for some to see the Browns as the “best” choice on this list. However, they do have a couple decent offensive weapons with Isaiah Crowell and Corey Coleman. And they had three first round picks, which included Myles Garrett, who is expected to help out the team drastically on defense. The biggest reason these guys are still on the list is their reputation—these guys just don’t know how to win, and when it’s legitimately possible that Brock Osweiler might be the QB—even if not for the whole season—that’s a problem since he couldn’t even win with DeAndre Hopkins, Will Fuller and Lamar Miller helping him out. But there’s just enough talent on the roster that they’ll do “better” than last year.
4. Los Angeles Rams
Although on one hand it might help that Wade Phillips is now the defensive coordinator, they still have a lot of issues on offense. Sure, Jared Goff’s in his second year now and sure, they have Sean McVay as their head coach, the guy who led one of the top offenses in the league as Washington’s o-coordinator the last two years. But it won’t matter when they have no weapons and a terrible offensive line that Todd Gurley can’t get past. With Kenny Britt gone, their best receivers this year are Tavon Austin and Robert Woods. That’s not good.
3. Chicago Bears
Things are truly unfolding here. Although they seem to be trying to add as many cheap weapons as they can in hopes that some of them work out (they signed Kendall Wright, Markus Wheaton, and Rueben Randle this offseason) and they have a great young RB in Jordan Howard, they can’t seem to decide at QB. They gave Mike Glennon a large contract, but then they traded three picks just to move up one spot to get Mitchell Trubisky. Something definitely is the matter down there if they felt the need to still do that. Oh yeah, and they have no defense. I almost forgot to mention that part. I feel bad for John Fox, the few weapons they do have, and even Glennon, since this was supposed to be his big chance. None of this will likely end well.
2. San Francisco 49ers
Be prepared to see this team picking in the top five of the NFL Draft a lot for a while. Even though they have a somewhat better roster right now with pickups and have a strong offensive mind with Kyle Shanahan as the head coach, they still don’t have a QB who can actually get them out of their current rut. I like Brian Hoyer, but it’s not going to work out for him. Besides, this is just too poorly run an organization right now to be winning any time soon.
1. New York Jets
Well, here’s a true mess of a team right now. Brandon Marshall is gone. Matt Forte is basically finished. Their QB this year might be Josh McCown, a guy who’s not that bad but will also be 38 at the start of the season. Their only weapons are Eric Decker and Quincy Enunwa, and Decker still is dealing with recovery from a season-ending injury. They have no legit starting TE. They have no defense. They have an RB who’s on his last legs. I am convinced at this point they’re just tanking the season to get a QB at #1 in 2018, since apparently they weren’t interested in this year’s ones. Of course, that won’t work either next year if they don’t get some help at the other positions.