Rams head coach Sean McVay and quarterback Matthew Stafford talk during...

Rams head coach Sean McVay and quarterback Matthew Stafford talk during practice at the team's facility in Irvine, Calif., on July 31. Credit: AP/Ashley Landis

1. IS THIS THE BILLS' YEAR? Sure feels like it. They’ve made that steady climb toward the top with sensible roster moves, starting with quarterback Josh Allen, and they’re easily the class of the AFC. Now it’s a matter of seeing if they can take the next step when the playoff lights come on. Time for this franchise to win its first Super Bowl.

2. CAN RAMS REPEAT? Free agency and trades are the great equalizer in the NFL, where parity continues to rule, especially at the highest level of the sport. Case in point: No team has repeated as Super Bowl champions since the 2003-04 Patriots. It’ll take a lot for the Rams to make that happen again, especially with Matthew Stafford’s tender elbow.

3. TOM BRADY'S LAST STAND? Brady has long passed the point of not needing to play to prove anything to anyone, but he’s still going at age 45. That said, his retirement, his unretirement and his training camp hiatus make you wonder if this will finally be it for the game’s greatest player.

4. HOW MUCH LONGER FOR AARON RODGERS? The Packers’ four-time MVP is still at the top of his game physically, but he is showing signs of emotional fatigue from a sport that demands so much. Rodgers has a diminished cast of receivers without star Davante Adams, but he’s still good enough to carry the Packers. If they win a second Super Bowl under the greatest quarterback in franchise history, we won’t be surprised if he walks away.

The Bengals' Joe Burrow throws a pass throws a pass...

The Bengals' Joe Burrow throws a pass throws a pass during training camp in Cincinnati on Aug. 15. Credit: AP/Aaron Doster

5. MORE JOE BURROW MAGIC? If you don’t think the Bengals are still smarting from their Super Bowl loss to the Rams, then you didn’t see the melee when the teams met for training camp practices. Motivation won’t be a problem for this team, but recapturing the vibe from last year’s remarkable out-of-nowhere run won’t be easy.

6. AFC WEST: GREATEST DIVISION EVER? Well, we won’t go that far, but top to bottom, this division rocks. Where’s a bad team among Kansas City, Las Vegas, Denver and the L.A. Chargers? It’s the modern-day equivalent of the old NFC East with the Giants, Philadelphia, Washington and Dallas slugging it out every week. Only this division features a spectacular collection of quarterbacks.

7. DID THE BROWNS MAKE MISTAKE? Cleveland traded for Deshaun Watson and gave him a fully guaranteed, five-year, $230 million contract. But is all of the justifiable criticism over his off-the-field behavior worth it? The Browns seem to think so, but an 11-game suspension and continued controversy will make this one of the riskiest moves yet.

8. JERRY'S WORLD OF DISAPPOINTMENT? Jerry Jones' Cowboys haven't won a Super Bowl since the '90s dynasty, and it looks as if the owner will have to wait even longer. It’s asking too much for this team to get there, and with all those off-season defections, you wonder whether the Cowboys will be looking up at the Eagles at season’s end.

Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin stands in the doorway to...

Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin stands in the doorway to the dorm as team members speak with reporters during their arrival at training camp in Latrobe, Pa., on July 26. Credit: AP/Keith Srakocic

9. WILL MIKE TOMLIN FINALLY HAVE A LOSING SEASON? This is one of the most underrated streaks in today’s NFL, but the Steelers coach hasn’t had a losing season since taking over for Bill Cowher in 2007. That may be about to end now that the Ben Roethlisberger era is finally over and there is a rebuild on offense. 

10. IS TREY LANCE ANSWER FOR 49ERS? It was a weird training camp for San Francico, which firt told Jimmy Garoppolo he was no longer wanted, but then decided he would be the backup quarterback. It’s Lance’s team, but having Garoppolo on the roster makes things awkward.

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