12. Arizona Cardinals
Tensions were high early in the offseason for the Arizona Cardinals as Kyler Murray was apparently unhappy with the team. However, it seems things have calmed down and he’s happy — for now.
That’s a good thing because Murray took a step forward this past season when he led the Cardinals to a 9-5 record as the starter. The problem is, they were 7-0 and then things got rough down the stretch.
Looking ahead to 2022, they’re still a team to watch even in a crowded NCF West which has the Rams and 49ers in it who both played in the NFC Championship Game.
11. New England Patriots
A one-year break from the playoffs ended last season when Bill Belichick got them back into the tournament in year two without Tom Brady. Their defense continued to be the calling card but it was the stability Mac Jones brought under center that propelled them forward.
Jones is entering his second season and will have to learn a new play-caller with Josh McDaniels now in Las Vegas. They also have to figure out what to do with J.C. Jackson, who seems bothered that he doesn’t have a new contract yet.
Whatever they end up doing, the Patriots will be a solid team once again in 2022 because they’re so well-rounded and well-coached.