NFL Conference Championships PREVIEW

NFL Conference Championships PREVIEW

Tampa Bay Buccaneers @ Green Bay Packers:  1/24 @ 3:05PM EST

Current Odds:  Green Bay -3.5 ; O/U: 53

WOW!  What an incredible story line this game blesses all of us football fanatics with!  Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers are quite possibly the two greatest quarterbacks to ever play the game.  Let’s talk about some possible advantages for both teams.

The Tampa Bay Bucs accomplished exactly what they sought out to do when they signed Tom Brady.  Head Coach Bruce Arians knew that he was only a dynamic quarterback away from a possible Super Bowl berth.  The Bucs cruised to a 11-5 regular season record and they made it look easy in both of their playoff wins against Washington and New Orleans.  Here are some possible edges that the Bucs could have in this game.

  • Total Defense- The Bucs defense ranks 7th in the NFL in opponent’s yards per play (5.1). Green Bay only ranks 13th, allowing 5.5 yards per play.
  • Turnover Battle- This is possibly the biggest edge for Tampa in this contest. The Tampa D has averaged 1.7 takeaways per game which is 2nd in the NFL. The Pack ranks near the bottom of the league by only forcing 1.1 turnovers per game. We all saw how the Bucs D confused the heck out of future 1st ballot Hall of Famer Drew Brees last week.  Also, do not forget that Tampa also did the same thing to Aaron Rodgers back on October 18 in week 6 of the regular season.  In that contest Rodgers only threw for 160 yards and 2 picks!  Will it be more of the same in this one?
  • Passing Offense- Not taking anything away from Mr. Rodgers and his “discount double check” (LOL) but the stats do not lie. The Bucs passed for nearly 288 yards per game while the Pack only passed for almost 259 per game this season.  While Green Bay definitely has the best receiver on the field in Devonta Adams, Tampa has a multi-faceted attack with Evans, Godwin, Brown, and Gronk!

Green Bay fought hard all year long with their main goal in giving Aaron Rodgers home field advantage in the playoffs.  The Pack accomplished their goal by going 13-3 in the regular season and smoking the Rams by 2 touchdowns last week in the divisional round.  Here are some of the edges that the Packers may enjoy in this contest.

  • Running the Football- Although the game is more pass-oriented now, it is hard to win a title without a dynamic running game. Green Bay enjoys a huge edge in this stat category.  The Pack averages 135.6 rushing yards per game while Tampa only comes in at 99.3 (one of the worst numbers in the league).
  • Total Offense- The Pack rank third in the league with averaging a robust 6.3 yards per play. The Bucs average 6.0 yards per play, which is good enough for 7th  Green Bay is by far the more balanced offensive team.
  • Red Zone Offense- Green Bay really cashes in when they make it the red zone. The Pack are #1 overall in touchdown percentage in the red zone by boasting a 78.46% mark.  Tampa ranks 11th in this category, scoring touchdowns at a 63.89% clip.


Buffalo Bills @ Kansas City Chiefs:  1/24 @ 6:40 EST

Current Odds: Kansas City -3 ; O/U: 55

The main 2 questions we all have is: Will Mahomes play and how effective will he be?  Here are some possible edges for both teams.

The Buffalo Bills had a splendid regular season by posting a 13-3 record.  This team is RED HOT winning 8 straight ball games (7 of them by 10 points or more).  Here are a few areas where the Bills have the edge.

  • Red Zone Offense- Surprisingly, Josh Allen and the Bills offense ranks a little bit higher than Mahomes and the Chiefs. The Bills have scored touchdowns 62.5% of the time while the Chiefs find the end zone 59.38% of the time.
  • Penalties- The Bills are the least penalized team in this matchup as they average 53.3 penalty yards per game. Meanwhile the Chiefs are penalized for 57.3 yards per game.

The Chiefs went 14-2 in the regular season and they possess the most powerful weapon on the field in Patrick Mahomes.  The All-World QB terrifies all opponents with his quick feet and huge arm!  If Mahomes is fully healthy he is clearly the best quarterback on the field.  But is he close to 100%?  Here are some possible advantages for the Chiefs in this game.

  • Total Offense- The Chiefs average 6.3 yards per play while Buffalo clocks in at 6.1. Also, Kansas City averages a robust 417.1 yards per game of offense while Buffalo averages 386.7.
  • Coaching Experience- How does that saying go? There is no substitute for experience!  Andy Reid far surpasses Sean McDermott are far as playoff experience is concerned.  This will be Coach Reid’s 31st career playoff game.  It is only McDermott’s fifth playoff game.



Packers -3.5 vs Buccaneers


Article Contributed By: Mike Noblin
Twitter: @MikeNoblin
Youtube: Mikey Nobs

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