Bracket, schedule, Super Bowl paths, more
Bracket, schedule, Super Bowl paths, morein Welcome to the Forum ! Wed Jan 03, 2018 1:44 am
by smithlucky • 158 Posts
We have arrived, at long last, upon the NFL postseason. This is lousy news for 20 teams but wonderful news for 12. And if you're a fan of one of those 12, this right here is the document you want to clip and save -- or whatever the 2018 internet equivalent of that might be.
ESPN's 2018 playoff primer breaks down each team's path, looks at its chances and tells you everything you need to know about what your team must do to reach Super Bowl LII next month in Minneapolis. We hope you find it enjoyable and educational. Path to Super Bowl LII: The Eagles get a bye, then will host either the sixth-seeded Falcons Alex Pietrangelo Jersey (if they win their first-round game), the fourth-seeded Saints or the fifth-seeded Panthers. Win that, and the Eagles would host the NFC Championship Game against either the Vikings, Rams, Saints or Panthers.
Reason for hope: The Eagles have been the best team all season. Their only losses entering Sunday (when they rested many starters in a home loss to Dallas) were road defeats in Kansas City and Seattle -- hardly anything of which to be ashamed. Even at their worst, which they were against the Giants on defense in Week 15 and against the Raiders on offense in Week 16, they've managed to find ways to win. They are deep and talented on both sides of the ball and can play a variety of styles and still win.
Reason for concern: Don't know if you've heard, but star quarterback Carson Wentz tore his ACL in Week 14, and the Eagles are rolling into the playoffs with Nick Foles. While Foles looked great in his first game, he doesn't offer Wentz's ability to make chicken salad on third and fourth downs. That was a key element of what made Philadelphia different from the other NFC contenders all season, and without it they may be just one of several very good teams in the NFC field.
X factor: Jay Ajayi. The Eagles should have the ability to lean on their run game to control games, especially once they take the lead. They got Ajayi to be a guy on whom they could rely for a heavy workload, and so far they haven't used him that way. It's possible they have a plan for him in the playoffs that would offer a new dimension to an offense that needs a post-Wentz jolt.
First game: Home game in divisional round on Sunday, Jan. 14 (4:40 p.m. ET on Fox) | Tickets Path to Super Bowl LII: The Vikings will get a bye week and then host a playoff game Jan. 14 against either the Rams, Saints or Panthers. If the Falcons beat the Rams in the wild-card round, the Vikings would host the Panthers-Saints winner. If the Rams beat the Falcons, the Vikings would host the Rams. If they win that, they would play in an NFC Championship Game either in Philadelphia or at home against the Falcons, Saints or Panthers.
Reason for hope: The defense is an absolute monster. Entering Sunday's game, the Vikings had held four of their previous six opponents under 10 points, and two of those opponents were the Rams and the Falcons. They allowed the fewest points per game and fewest yards per game of any team in the league. They had the second-best third-down defense and the second-best goal-to-go defense. You wish they were better at generating turnovers (just 19 all season entering Sunday), but the defense is so good at limiting opponents in so many situations that it should keep http://www.officialrockiestore.com/Carlos_Gonzalez_Jersey the Vikings in every game. Reason for concern: Since they didn't secure the No. 1 seed, Derick Brassard Youth jersey the prospect of having to win an outdoor game in Philadelphia to advance to the Super Bowl (which would be in their own home stadium, by the way) Antti Raanta Jersey looms large. And as http://www.authenticstlouiscardinals.com/Adam-Wainwright-Jersey great as Case Keenum's story and season have been, we haven't seen him tested under playoff pressure.
X factor: The pass protection. One of the key elements to Keenum's season has been the Vikings' ability to keep him protected. Entering Sunday, he'd been sacked just 20 times -- fewer than any other quarterback in the NFC field besides Drew Brees. (And of course Nick Foles, who has started only three games.) Can the Vikings' improved offensive line keep Keenum clean against the type of pass rushes he'll see on the road to Super Bowl LII?Path to Super Bowl LII: The Rams host the defending NFC champion Falcons. If they win that, they would travel to Minnesota for a divisional-round game against the Vikings. Win that, and the Rams would find themselves in an NFC Championship Game either in Philadelphia or at home against the Saints or Panthers.
Reason for hope: The Rams were the highest-scoring team in the league at 31 points per game before Sunday's white-flag, regular-season finale. Todd Gurley, who didn't play Sunday, led the NFL with 2,093 yards from scrimmage, and with top wideout Robert Woods back from injury, the passing game is in position to click the way it was during the middle part of the season. Coach Sean McVay isn't running out of creative offensive ideas anytime soon.
Reason for concern: Same as for a lot of teams in this NFC field -- inexperience. Jared Goff has been an NFL starter for a season and a half. Gurley is a third-year player. The wideouts and tight ends are a young, inexperienced group. And there's also the fact that no other potential playoff team but Tennessee entered Week 17 with more turnovers than the Rams' 19. The margin for error shrinks this time of year. MLB Jerseys Usa NBA Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys China Nike NFL Jerseys China MLB Jerseys China