Sep 30, 2012; Stanford, CA, USA; General view of a pink ribbon on the exterior of Sports Authority Field at Mile High in recognition of breast cancer awareness month during the NFL game between the Oakland Raiders and Denver Broncos. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE

NFL Standings Aren't Looking Familiar

Yep, you read that right. If the Bears lose in Dallas tonight, the NFC North will have the Minnesota Vikings in sole possession of first place at 3-1 after the first month of the season. Not bad for a team that many predicted would be lucky to win 3 games all season, eh? No matter what, the Lions will be in last – again, all by themselves – at 1-3. Talk about deja vu!

The Cowboys will either be tied with the Eagles (with a win) or tied for second in the NFC East with…well, all the OTHER NFC East teams at 2-2.

The NFC East is arguably the toughest division in the NFL. With no teams with a losing record, the only other division that can say that is the unlikely NFC West.

Strange, strange happenings in the standings a month in.

Mediocrity reigns in the AFC East with everyone at 2-2 besides the Dolphins. Miami lost 2 consecutive overtime games to get there in the league’s hardest-luck story so far. The Patriots are off to an uncharacteristic slow start at 2-2 but poured it on this past week and look like they’ve regained their swagger after some stumbling out of the gate. The Bills’ D is much more highly paid than they were last year without showing any real improvement on the field. In fact, they’re the team that gave up those 52 points to the Pats yesterday and the Jets seem to have reverted to the Jets of old…I’m talking about years ago when they were bad for so long. They can’t score, and they can’t stop people. That’s gotta hurt.

To start the season, it was almost a foregone conclusion that the AFC North would be a two-team horserace for first place. Baltimore, last season’s division winner, was to be one of them and they are. The other? For now, it’s the Bengals…who haven’t beaten a team with a winning record since 2010. The Steel Curtain in Pittsburgh is showing rust and the Browns are still the Browns.

The AFC South is the one division that seems to be shaping up more or less as advertised – Houston and then everybody else. The Texans are undefeated in the easiest division in the NFL and have a 3-game lead after 4 contests. They’ll probably be the first team in the NFL to clinch a playoff spot as they have more wins (4) than the other 3 teams combined have with 3.

Things rarely do go as planned, and the NFC South is another prime example. Atlanta and New Orleans were to fight over first place with the Panthers possibly making a Wild Card run. A month later, the Falcons kept up their end but the Saints have yet to chalk up their initial victory. The Panthers have stumbled and gave the Falcons their 4th win on a silver platter, served up with all the trimmings last Sunday while the young Tampa Bay Buccaneers looked good in defeating the Panthers in the season opener. They haven’t won since then.

The NFC West has a single undefeated team perched on top, looking down at the rest. 99.44% of all people would have said that team would be the San Francisco 49’ers on September 1st…but it’s October first, and the undefeated team is the unlikeliest one of all…the Arizona Cardinals.

It’s yet another predictably unpredictable NFL season. It’s one of the few certainties in the NFL from one year to the next and a big reason to keep track of the entire league’s games each week. We could be watching Minnesota and Arizona face off in the NFC Championship game at this rate.

Now, pardon me while I go watch a bunch of Chicago Bears players wearing pink undergarments play against a Cowboys team wearing similar attire.

Yep, nothing to see here…

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Tags: NFL Standings

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