Over the next week, The Sun's Jamison Hensley gives his predictions on how each of the NFL divisions will unfold this season. As always, this is not an exact science.

NFC West

1. San Francisco: This is clearly the most talented team in the division. Patrick Willis is a favorite to win defensive player of the year. On offense, the 49ers can turn to Frank Gore, Vernon Davis and Michael Crabtree for big plays.

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2. Arizona: The Cardinals take a step backward in the division because they took a step backward at quarterback. Replacing the retired Kurt Warner with Derek Anderson will be the major reason why the Cardinals aren't in the playoffs.

3. Seattle: Pete Carroll made 130-plus roster moves to improve the team. But there are still major issues on the offensive and defensive lines. The only reason why the Seahawks won't finish last is because the Rams are in their division.

4. St. Louis: There's not much talent with the Rams. Mark Clayton avoids getting cut by getting traded to St. Louis, where he could become their No. 1 wide receiver. Enough said.

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