We’ve written about so many potential Super Bowl contenders and teams with potential to go far this season, but what about the others? You know, the losers of the NFL now that we’re eight weeks in. Which teams should we just go ahead and give up on this season? Here are five of the worst looking teams right now.
Hey, at least they’ll get a good draft pick next year…
The Buffalo Bills
Aside from that stunner of a game against the Minnesota Vikings, the Bills are looking pretty dreadful at 6-2 and holding strong at the bottom of the AFC East. They’ve replaced quarterback Tyrod Taylor, but young and tough (and unimpressive) rookie Josh Allen is still raw. And now he’s got an elbow injury, so they’re working with Derek Anderson who threw three interceptions and fumbled in their 37-5 loss to the Colts on his first start. (They’ve traded away AJ McCarron, who was injured in the preseason.) Along with the Arizona Cardinals, the Bills probably have the worst offense in the league. After getting to their first playoff game in forever last season, it doesn’t look like it’s gonna happen for them again this year. But the tickets are cheap and at least the tailgating is good, right?
The Oakland Raiders
Jon Gruden is making a mess of the Raiders. He traded away their best player when he sent Khalil Mack to the Bears and now they’ve lost Amari Cooper to the Cowboys. Gruden embraces a style of play (and player) that was popular 10 years ago (when he last coached). He’s stockpiling veterans like it’s going out of style (it is). The Raiders seem to blow any early lead they manage to acquire, the defense can’t stop the run or rush the passer, and, well, QB Derek Carr isn’t great either. They are currently 1-6, with their only win being against the Cleveland Browns… and that was only by three points! Sure, maybe they really are “rebuilding” this year, but the players are frustrated and it looks like the team has totally checked out. They might be the worst.
The Arizona Cardinals
The Cardinals are bad, no doubt, but what makes it worse for them is that they have to play a tougher schedule in a much tougher NFC conference. New rookie quarterback Josh Rosen has his work cut out for him. Their offense wasn’t great last year, but this season it’s been hit with injuries and they’ve only managed to pull off two wins in eight games so far. Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald is probably their best player, but he’s 35 and this might be his last year with the Cardinals. With lots of veteran turnover on defense, they are struggling to stop opposing teams. Maybe it’s not that they’re bad, because they do have some great players, but they’re definitely underperforming. They did just pull off a come-from-behind win over the 49ers who have a pathetic 7-1 record of their own. In fact, the only team they’ve beaten this season is the 49ers… twice.
San Francisco 49ers
Yeah, they couldn’t beat another one-win team on Sunday. Somehow, the 49ers managed to blow a fourth-quarter 15-3 lead. The team is playing under its backup quarterback CJ Beathard and he looks skittish and mediocre. Their pass defense is terrible and their pass offense might be even worse. The O-line needs a lot of work too, but despite all that, it looks like Head Coach Kyle Shanahan’s job is secure. It’s not all gloom and doom though. Well, not quite. Marquise Goodwin is a fast and talented running back and an often injured Richard Sherman is still solid at cornerback… but they can’t do it all. Right now, the 49ers stand to get the number-one draft pick. They play the Raiders next week to find out which team is slightly less horrible.
The Cleveland Browns
Obvi. Despite all the Baker Mayfield hype and breaking their two-year losing streak, these guys can’t seem to get it together. The Browns just fired Head Coach Hue Jackson and offensive coordinator Todd Haley along with him. Talk about mid-season chaos. Jackson was with the team for two and a half seasons and left with a record of 3-36-1. Ouch. He’s blown a lead more than a few times with his coaching decisions. Mayfield is talented and shows a lot of mental fortitude but there’s only so much he can do with the Brown’s current offense. Running back Nick Chubb and cornerback Denzel Ward are also great players, but it doesn’t look like anybody is going to lift them up from their current position in last place in the AFC North. Although they appear to be heading in the right direction, they’re not going to do anything crazy to surprise us this season.
Oh, and we’ll throw an honorable mention to the New York Giants and a struggling Eli Manning, whose misery we’ve already covered here.