I have been an NFL fan since I was, I’m guessing, 8 years old; my first favorite team was the Baltimore Colts, and my hero was Johnny U. I picked up the Steelers the season they went, I think it was, 5-9, and they’ve been my main team ever since. In other words, I’ve watched a lot of NFL football…and in all my years, I’ve never seen a season in which there were so many AWFUL football teams. “Bad” doesn’t do these teams justice; there are some bad teams out there, but I’m talking gut-wrenching awful. The Miami Dolphins are a bad football team, but they’re not awful; the Buffalo Bills are pretty close to awful, but I’ll just call them bad. The Jacksonville Jaguars are a bad football team. But after that, there are better than half a dozen teams that are just utterly pathetic.
The Oakland Raiders are an awful team. Hideous. Miserable.
The Kansas City Chiefs are an awful team.
The Tennessee Titans are, inexplicably, an awful football team–though I still think that Jeff Fisher will get this team to at least 5 wins on the year. We’ll see…but right now, this team is just plain awful.
The Cleveland Browns are monstrously awful.
The St. Louis Rams are perfectly ghastly, a thoroughly pitiful, awful team.
The Detroit Lions aren’t the worst team in football, and they’re better than last year–but they’re still awful.
The Washington Redskins are horrid. Putrid. I don’t care if they have two wins, they’re still just an awful team.
The Carolina Panthers likewise have two wins, and they are likewise awful.
Finally, the Tampa Bay Bucs, in a rebuilding year, are an awful football team.
That’s better than a quarter of the teams in the NFL that aren’t just bad, but horrid, despicable, awful teams, and I think I’m being charitable, despite their three wins, for not putting the Bills in that category.
I’ve never seen a season like it. Now, one or two of these teams will manage to win six games, simply because they play each other (and somebody has to win) and there’ll be the occasional “what happened there?” upset (witness the Oakland win over the Eagles). But that fact doesn’t alter the reality: there are some pitiful teams in the league this season, more than any season I remember.