2019 NFL Championship Sunday Predictions

web-aaron-donald-rams-1535749330
Photo by Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

Los Angeles Rams @ New Orleans Saints

While I think the Saints are the much better team and the Saints have a great home-field advantage, I think this game will be much closer than many might expect. Considering the expectations we generally have for the Saints at home, their offense wasn’t at their most explosive last week. Had the Eagles scored a single touchdown after the 1st quarter, they would’ve won. I trust the Saints to win this, but I won’t be shocked if the Rams pull off the upset.

Prediction: Saints win

 

c5e468d4-68f3-4fd4-8a0e-833d428ad6c7-usatsi_11918006
Photo by Greg M. Cooper/USA Today

New England Patriots at Kansas City Chiefs

Mahomes showed up in his first playoff game in a way that most 1st-time playoff quarterbacks do not and Andy Reid couldn’t find a way to blow that game against the Colts. But, as great as Andrew Luck and the Colts have been lately, playing the Patriots in the playoffs is going to be a next-level challenge. The Chiefs do have a great home-field advantage, but the weather won’t be something this Pats team isn’t already used to, so that advantage might be minimized. Obviously Mahomes is unbelievable and this Chiefs team is legit, but there’s no way I’m picking against Brady and Belichick against Andy Reid and a young quarterback.

Prediction: Patriots win

Advertisements

NFL Divisional Round Predictions

460752723AT00118_Wild_Card_
Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Indianapolis Colts @ Kansas City Chiefs

The Colts are going to put up a lot points, but even with the Chief’s playoff history, I think they’ll be able to put up more points than the Colts. This will likely be similar to the AFC Wild Card game in 2014 that the Colts won 45-44, but I think the Chiefs will pull this off.

Prediction: Chiefs win

 

usa_today_10321506.0
Photo by Matthew Emmons/USA Today

Dallas Cowboys @ Los Angeles Rams

The Cowboys needed the Seahawks to lose their kicker and abandon their most lethal weapon in Russel Wilson to barely beat the Seahawks by 2 at home. The Rams have struggled a bit recently, but I think they’ll be able to put up enough points to win this game.

Prediction: Rams Win

Philip Rivers
Photo by Steven Senne/AP

Los Angeles Chargers @ New England Patriots

The Chargers are going to the AFC Championship game. This Patriots team has some good wins this season, but it just feels like even if this isn’t the end of their run, this year isn’t going to be a Super Bowl year for them. Too many holes, too many unhealthy guys, and things unfortunately didn’t work out for Josh Gordon. The Chargers demonstrated they don’t need home-field and they 10am Pacific start time didn’t seem to hurt them either.

Prediction: Chargers win

 

gettyimages-470774283-612x612
Photo by Rob Tringali/Getty Images

Philadelphia Eagles @ New Orleans Saints

The Nick Foles thing is cute, but let’s be real, he’s not beating Drew Brees in New Orleans. The home-field advantage is legit for the Saints and they are probably going to score 40+ on the Eagles’ secondary. I think it’s awesome what Foles has done to keep the Eagles’ season alive and obviously his post-season last year was incredible, but the Saints are going to annihilate this Eagles team.

Prediction: Saints Win

NFL 2018 Season Predictions

Bay Area Teams

raiders

Oakland Raiders: 7-9

 

9455_san_francisco_49ers-primary-2009

San Francisco 49ers: 9-7

 

Division Winners

AFC East

pats

New England Patriots

AFC North

bengals

Cincinnati Bengals

AFC South

jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars

AFC West

i

Kansas City Chiefs

 

NFC East

5293_washington_redskins-alternate-2009

Washington

 

NFC North

packers

Green Bay Packers

 

NFC South

panthers

Carolina Panthers

 

NFC West

los-angeles-rams-logo-transparent

Los Angeles Rams

 

Conference Champions

NFC Champion

panthers

Carolina Panthers

 

AFC Champion

jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars

 

Super Bowl Champion

panthers

Carolina Panthers

NFL Wild Card Weekend Predictions

NFL: Tennessee Titans at Kansas City Chiefs

Photo by Denny Medley – USA Today

Titans @ Chiefs

While it’s tough to trust Alex Smith and Andy Reid in a playoff game, they should be able to beat up on the weak opponent that is the Tennessee Titans. This might be slightly less depressing than the Raiders vs. Texans game last year, but less one-sided than Chiefs vs. Texans from the year before.

Prediction: Chiefs win

 

Falcons @ Rams

107053707.0
Photo by Dilip Vishwanat – Getty Images

The Falcons were able to squeak out a few good wins and slide into the last Wild Card spot, but they’re desperate to be put out of their misery. The Rams might be young and inexperienced, but they actually want to win. This might start off close, but I expect the Rams to blow this open in the 2nd half, if not the 2nd quarter. I hope we get to see a few awesome Todd Gurley playoff games.

Prediction: Rams win

 

Bills @ Jaguars

usatsi_9708967_1480279577850_7127235_ver1-0
Photo by Kevin Hoffman

As much as I love that one of these teams HAS to win, I hate that one of them has to lose. The Bills have a pretty good chance of winning if LeSean McCoy can play. The Bills have the better Quarterback and possibly the better running back, depending on health. If the Bills defense plays decently or if Blake Bortles gives them the ball more than he does to his own team (I’m a Bortles Believer, but also not blind).  I think the Jags ultimately win, but this has a decent chance of going either way.

Prediction: Jaguars win

 

Panthers @ Saints

carolina-panthers-vs-new-orleans-saints-prediction-preview-pick-to-win
Photo by AJ Sisco – UPO

The Saints have had a great year and won both of their regular season games against the Panthers. The Panthers have been inconsistent, but I think the Panthers are the better team and Cam can win this one by himself if he has to. Of course it’s possible Brees and Kamara both have great games and pull off another win against the Panthers, but I don’t think they pull it off a third time this season.

Prediction: Panthers win

NFL 2016 Season Predictions

2016 NFL Predictions

Bay Area Teams

First, predictions for both Bay Area teams:

raiders-helmet

Oakland Raiders: 11-5

This may be wishful thinking, but, I really think the Raiders win their division this year. I think last year was a fluke for the Chiefs and while the Broncos were able to win with their defense last year, I just don’t see there defense being one of the all-time greats this year and able to make up for their awful quarterback situation. The schedule also helps, with games against the NFC South and AFC South, they have an opportunity to feast on the one mostly-terrible division, and one probably-totally terrible division, respectively.

49ers-helmet

San Francisco 49ers: 6-10

Again, likely wishful thinking. I don’t think Chip Kelly is a great coach, but I know he’s better than Jim Tomsula. Similarly, I don’t know if Colin Kaepernick is a great quarterback, but I know he’s better than Blaine Gabbert. At some point, Chip will have to put Gabbert back on the bench. It may take more time than it would’ve due to Kaepernick’s recent decision to kneel during the national anthem, but if Chip, along with Trent Baalke, want to keep their jobs, at some point they’ll put winning first. They have a pretty balanced schedule with tougher games in both the second and first half of the season (mostly a product of their division, as well as the two divisions they play against, the NFC South and AFC East, being very top heavy). If Kelly waits until the bye week to make a decision on Kaepernick, he puts them in a better position to win against the Saints, Dolphins, Bears, Falcons, and their second game against the Rams.

Division Winners

AFC

AFC East

pats

New England Patriots

I have no idea if Jimmy Garoppolo is good. But we’ve seen this team go 11-5 with Matt Cassel. If Rob Gronkowski stays healthy, they probably go 2-2 with Jimmy, they’ll likely lose their first game (to the Cardinals) and possibly their 3rd or 4th to the Texans and Bills, respectively. But I don’t see anyone else in this division going more than 9-7, so the Patriots getting 2 out of Jimmy and get at least 8 wins out of their 12 other games. The Bills might make it interesting, but probably not.

AFC North

bengals

Cincinnati Bengals

If Andy Dalton doesn’t get hurt and Vontaze Burfict doesn’t have a bizarre meltdown, I think the Bengals make the Superbowl last year. I know Andy Dalton doesn’t have a great track record during big games, but he was great last year, and this roster is one of the most talented in the NFL. Obviously, the Steelers have a great chance to win this division too, but I’m inclined to go with the Bengals because I trust their defense more.

AFC South

jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars

I could be convinced that any team could win this division, really. The Titans seem like the least likely team to win it, but who knows, maybe Marcus Mariota has an unbelievable year and 9 wins will probably be enough for this division. The Colts seem like the most logical, but I worry about Andrew Luck staying healthy and consistent. The Texans might win it again, but JJ Watt‘s health is questionable and we don’t know if Brock Osweiler is actually good. So, all things considered, I like what the Jaguars have done with their defense and adding Chris Ivory means Blake Bortles has someone else to work with on offense. I hope they Steal The Show.

AFC West

raiders

Oakland Raiders

I said a bunch about this above, but yeah, Chiefs seem like the only other team that could win this division, but I think they’ll regress to the mean this year. The Raiders look good, but we’ll see.

NFC

NFC East

giants

New York Giants

This is a similar situation to the AFC South. One of these teams has to win, and it’ll probably be another 8 or 9 win team. The Eagles and Cowboys don’t have much of a chance due to their quarterback issues. Washington could repeat, but I don’t anticipate Kirk Cousins improving, but with a soft schedule, it’s certainly possible. It’s mostly a toss-up between the Giants and Washington, but I’ll trust an offense with Eli and OBJ over Cousins with anybody.

NFC North

packers

Green Bay Packers

The Lions won’t have Megatron. The Bears don’t look to be improved. The Vikings seemed like they might have a chance to repeat, and they still might, but those chances seem significantly less likely with Teddy Bridgewater out for the season. Jordy Nelson is back and Eddie Lacy is in shape. If Aaron Rodgers is himself, the Packers should win this division with a solid lead.

NFC South

panthers

Carolina Panthers

Every other team in this division is trash. The Buccaneers will be good in a few years, the Falcons need a decent quarterback, the Saints need somebody other than Drew Brees. The Panthers probably won’t go 15-1 and they did lose Josh Norman, but getting Kelvin Benjamin back means they’ll probably still be a better team. No doubt in my mind they win this division.

NFC West

Seattle Seahawks

I want to pick the Cardinals here, but for some reason, I just can’t. The Seahawks might come out to another slow start and be a Wild Card team again, but I have a feeling they’ll be dominant all year. I would not be surprised if both the Cardinals and Seahawks are undefeated by the time they play each-other in Week 7. If Russell Wilson can produce all season like he did in the second half of last season, I think 13 or 14 wins for Seattle is totally possible. The Cardinals will probably be right there with them, but I think Carson Palmer and Larry Fitzgerald won’t be quite as good as they were last year.

Conference Champions

AFC Champion

bengals-alternate

Cincinnati Bengals

Logically, the Pats are the choice, but I just wanna pick the Bengals.

NFC Champion

panthers-alternate

Carolina Panthers

Tough to decide between the Panthers and the Seahawks, but I think the Panthers will be even better prepared for a deep playoff run this year.

sbli

Superbowl Champion

 

panthers-helmet

Carolina Panthers

I think they’ll get it done this time. If they end up playing the Patriots, I’ll be a little less sure, but I’d still bet on the Panthers.