Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 11/2/12
It is hard to believe that we are already halfway through the NFL season. It seems like just days ago the Giants and Cowboys were kicking things off.We have now reached the midway point and it is time to take a look at how things are shaping up in the NFC West.This division has been full of surprises through the first eight weeks and I don’t expect much different during the second half.Here is your NFC West midseason review.Arizona CardinalsAfter a surprising 4-0 start to the season, the Arizona Cardinals' hype train has died down. They are second in the division with a 4-4 record and have had a very interesting season thus far.Wins: vs. Seattle, at New England, vs. Philadelphia, vs. Miami.Losses: at St. Louis, vs. Buffalo, at Minnesota, vs. San FranciscoHome Record: 3-2Road Record: 1-2Team MVP: Daryl WashingtonArizona inside linebacker Daryl Washington has been an absolute stud this season. He has 68 tackles, eight sacks, two forced fumbles and is the leader of the Cardinals' defense. Sorry Fitz.Storyline: “Bitten by the Injury Bug”The Cardinals can’t seem to catch a break when it comes to staying healthy. This season it is their offense that has been targeted. Beanie Wells is out until at least Week 12 and backup running back Ryan Williams is done for the year. They also lost both of their starting tackles for the season before it began.San Francisco 49ersOne of the Super Bowl favorites heading into 2012, San Francisco picked up right where they left off last season. They have a two game lead in the NFC West division with a 6-2 record.Wins: at Green Bay, vs. Detroit, at New York Jets, vs. Buffalo, vs. Seattle, at Arizona.Losses: at Minnesota, vs. New York Giants.Home Record: 3-1Road Record: 3-1Team MVP: Frank GoreEven though San Francisco added several new players on offense, the one man who continues to stick out is Frank Gore. He is not getting the amount of touches that you would expect out of a starting running back, but he is averaging 5.5 yards per carry.He has also added four touchdowns and is a huge reason for the 49ers' offensive success.Storyline: “49ers No Longer the NFC’s Team to Beat”A lot of people had San Francisco pegged as the team to beat heading into this season and even more jumped on the bandwagon after a Week 1 win in Green Bay. That was until they were upset by the Vikings and then destroyed by the Giants.Seattle SeahawksJust like Arizona, the Seattle Seahawks are at the .500 mark. The tiebreaker puts them in third place in the division with a 4-4 record. They have won some very tough games and are proving that they are a team on the rise.Wins: vs. Dallas, vs. Green Bay, at Carolina, vs. New England.Losses: at Arizona, at St. Louis, at San Francisco, at Detroit.Home Record: 3-0Road Record: 1-4Team MVP: Richard ShermanSeattle has faced several teams with a great receiving core this season and they have done a great job at shutting them down. Cornerback Richard Sherman eliminated Calvin Johnson from the equation in the Seahawks' loss to Detroit. He has 36 tackles, two forced fumbles and three interceptions on the year.Storyline: “Elite QB’s no match for Seahawks' Defense”Even though they have a less than impressive record of 4-4, the Seattle Seahawks have done a great job against some of the league’s top teams. All four of their wins have come against quarterbacks who were considered top 10 last season. They held Aaron Rodgers and the Packers to just 12 points and forced Tom Brady to commit two turnovers.St. Louis RamsAfter finishing 2011 with just two wins, the new look St. Louis Rams came out strong this season, nearly knocking off Detroit in Week 1. At 3-5 they already have more wins than they did last year and they are undefeated in division play.Wins: vs. Washington, vs. Seattle, vs. Arizona.Losses: at Detroit, at Chicago, at Miami, vs. Green Bay, vs. New England (Wembley).Home Record: 3-2Road Record: 0-3Team MVP: Danny AmendolaThe Rams have had great contributions from several players on the defensive side of the ball and it would have been very easy to give this award to a Chris Long or a James Laurinitis. Here is why Danny Amendola gets my vote...With him: 3-2Without: 0-3Storyline: “Our House Isn’t Your House”One thing that Jeff Fisher and the Rams have established is that there will be no easy games at the Edward Jones Dome. St. Louis will defend their home turf and not go down without a fight. They took down two division opponents on home turf as well as Robert Griffin III and the Redskins. Playing in St. Louis can no longer be considered a “break” in your schedule.
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