Analyst Ruffles Feathers With Surprising Pick For NFL’s Best Team

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The Kansas City Chiefs are defending back-to-back Super Bowl champions, so, by and large, they are considered the best team in football going into 2024. Rightfully so, too.

But don’t tell that to Fox Sports analyst Craig Carton.

While reviewing the 2024 NFL schedule release, Carton dubbed the San Francisco 49ers—the team the Chiefs beat in the Super Bowl last February—the best squad in the league.

Not only does Carton think the 49ers are the best team, but he thinks it’s “not even close.”

That’s quite a bold statement considering San Francisco just lost to the Chiefs and didn’t really do much of anything to improve its roster during the offseason.

On paper, the Niners are fantastic. They definitely are the best club in the NFC. They are terrific on both sides of the ball, and they did give Kansas City a real run in the Super Bowl, losing in overtime.

However, it’s just hard to call any team other than the Chiefs the best team in the NFL right now.

Carton thinks the 49ers are a “lock” to win the NFC West and that they are “head and shoulders” above everyone else in the conference. He also says they are a “lock” to make it to the NFC Championship Game.

He adds that he isn’t counting Kansas City out, but that the road to the Super Bowl in the AFC is harder than the NFC. He says the AFC has better quarterbacks and better competition.

Finally, Carton says that San Francisco has a much easier path to the Super Bowl.

That may be true, but an easier path does not necessarily mean that the Niners are the better team.

Look: on a personal note, I actually picked the 49ers to beat the Chiefs in the Super Bowl last winter. I was wrong, as Mahomes delivered once again.

We can talk all we want about how good San Francisco’s roster looks and how many deficiencies Kansas City may have. And you know what? All of that may be true, especially if Rashee Rice ends up getting hit with a lengthy suspension (and he probably will).

But until someone actually dethrones the Chiefs, you can’t call anyone else the best team in football heading into next season.

Now if Kansas City gets off to a bad start, then maybe we can re-evaluate, but until then, the Chiefs are the champs, and they should be respected as such.

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