Training camps aren’t scheduled to open until next month, but we easily can identify now Super Bowl favorites (Chiefs, Saints, Ravens) and bottom-dwellers (Jags, Redskins, Panthers). Then there are teams that have neither substantial upward mobility nor rosters bad enough to outflank the dregs for a chance to draft Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence, the presumptive No. 1 pick.
No division houses more members of this middling contingent than the NFC North. Entering 2020, this storied division has three teams firmly in the middle class. Bovada’s Super Bowl LV odds slot each between 14th and 25th.
The Vikings (14th), Bears (17th) and Lions (25th) will enter their respective seasons aiming to prove doubters wrong. But when viewed through a longer lens, this trio’s situations reveal plans that have veered off course or run the risk of doing so soon. And after the Packers’ widely panned offseason, they are in danger of falling closer to their divisional brethren.
Although each team took a different route here, the division’s franchises face similar questions about their futures.