SANTA CLARA, CA—Following persistent safety concerns regarding the playing surface throughout the regular season, the NFL made firm assurances Friday to both the Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers that the bottomless pit in the middle of the field at Levi’s Stadium will be fully repaired before Super Bowl 50.
- Strength: Coach Mike Tomlin's inability to figure out if the Steelers are a running team or a passing team keeps opposing defenses on their toes
- Weakness: Roethlisberger has lost considerable respect in his own locker room and throughout the league because he was not convicted of a crime
- Intangibles: Commitment to defense forces opposing teams to respect the Steel Curtain until they realize at halftime that it's overrated and they should probably be exploiting a secondary that is actually pretty terrible
- Biggest Question: Is this finally the year Dan Rooney dies?
- Strength: In the past three years, their ability to convince NFL experts the team could make it to the Super Bowl has been staggering
- Weakness: Terrell Owens wants to prove he can still play at a high level, but he wants to systematically destroy an entire football organization much, much more
- Intangibles: The combination of T.O. and Ochocinco could make the Bengals so annoying at the receiver position that other teams forfeit to avoid playing them
- Biggest Question: How good is Carson Palmer's psychiatrist?
- Strength: N/A
- Weakness: Okay, where to begin? Let's see, Jake Delhomme is their starting quarterback. Bobby Engram, their 37-year-old starting wide receiver, caught 5 passes last year. Running back Jamal Lewis was cut in the off-season. Man, this is fun and easy! What else? Okay! They're in a constant state of rebuilding and have no team identity, the future of the franchise is Colt McCoy, and their biggest asset is team president and non-football-player Mike Holmgren
- Strength: Oh, just thought of one: dog faces
- Player to Watch: To see Colt McCoy become a starter too early, get extremely flustered, and have a terrible rookie season could be quite delightful
- Biggest Question: How soon will fans bust out the paper bags?
- Strength: Though it exceeds every level of human comprehension, Joe Flacco continues to improve at quarterback
- Weakness: On the whole, people get a depressed, nauseous feeling when forced to admit the Ravens are a pretty good football team
- Player To Watch: Signing free agent receiver Anquan Boldin from Arizona was a good move; however, at $3 trillion a year, the Ravens may have overspent
- Biggest Question: Can they avoid injuries by politely asking Ray Lewis to stop head butting them?