Wednesday, January 11, 2017

2016-17 NFL playoff predictions (Part 2 - Divisional)

Welcome to part two of Thunderbirds101's NFL playoff predictions! Four for four on the picks in the Wild Card; let's hope the Divisional picks are as successful!

Let's get this done and dusted.

Thunderbirds101's picks


#1 New England Patriots vs #4 Houston Texans
After a first-round bye, the Patriots enter the playoffs all guns blazing on a seven-game winning streak. In their one meeting back in September, the Patriots routed the Texans 27-0. The Texans have a potent defense, but it will be a daunting challenge to overcome one of the most elite teams in the league. The Texans were fortunate to face the battered Raiders in the Wild Card - they will not be so fortunate again.

Prediction: Patriots win, 41-10.
Result: Patriots win, 34-16.

T-Bird's comments after the game:
A decisive Patriots win, despite interceptions and fumbles. Both teams made costly turnovers, but the Patriots ensured their artillery overwhelmed the Texans. Overall, no surprises with this game.


#2 Kansas City Chiefs vs #3 Pittsburgh Steelers
Back in October the Chiefs were routed by the Steelers, 43-14. It was the Chiefs' worst performance of the season, but that was at Heinz Field. Now Pittsburgh must fight this time at Arrowhead Stadium. The Chiefs, however, have not won a playoff game at home since 1994 in a 27-24 overtime win over the Steelers. A spirited duel awaits.

Prediction: Steelers win, 35-31.

Result: Steelers win, 18-16.

T-Bird's comments after the game:
A spirited duel, but not as high-scoring as I anticipated. The holding call on the Chiefs' two-point conversion attempt was brutal; one penalty smothered the Chiefs' hopes of staying alive. Alas, the Steelers advance, and now the stage is set for a battle royale in Foxborough.



#1 Dallas Cowboys vs #5 Green Bay Packers

After a rout of the Giants, the Packers move on to face the top team in the NFC. The Packers must ensure their O-line isn't shredded like it was early on against the Giants. As long as Aaron Rodgers has room to maneuver, the scores will pile on fast. As for Dallas, they must ensure their wide receivers don't have butter fingers like the Giants. Simple, really.

Prediction: Packers win, 38-27.

Result: Packers win, 34-31.

T-Bird's comments after the game:
I was going to post explosion GIFs, given how poorly Dallas began the game, but this is a more accurate GIF, given what happened:

What a game! Green Bay opened the game in complete control, all guns blazing, but Dallas fought back hard and tied the game - twice! Unfortunately for the Cowboys, the Packers scored a last-second field goal and neutralized the top-ranked team in the NFC. Green Bay's victory sets them up for a NFC Championship showdown at Georgia Dome.

#2 Atlanta Falcons vs #3 Seattle Seahawks
After a decisive victory over the Lions, the Seahawks head on to the road to face the Falcons. The Falcons have the most explosive offense in the league, but their defense has repeatedly given up 30-plus points in several regular season games. Seattle's primary weakness will - as always - be the offensive line. It held strong against the Lions - will it hold against the Falcons?

Prediction: Seahawks win, 28-24.

Result: Falcons win, 36-20.

T-Bird's comments after the game:

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