The Conference Championships are set for the NFL playoffs and the Super Bowl LV is just around the corner. In the NFC, the first postseason matchup between Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady as the Packers host the Buccaneers. In the AFC, we have the Chiefs participating in their third straight AFC Championship and are hosting the Bills. Both games have exciting storylines to follow, and each team is hoping to represent their conference in this Super Bowl. However, that is the question that remains, which teams will look to boost their legacy and represent their conference in the Super Bowl?
Buccaneers-31 @ Packers- 36
Both the Packers and Buccaneers have put up at least 30 points in the playoffs. Also, Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers are playing turnover-free football, which sets this game up to have lots of points. The difference in this game will come in how the teams start. The Packers have specialized at getting early leads and maintaining them throughout the regular season. Furthermore, the Buccaneers defense will have a more difficult time than they did in week 6. Aaron Rodgers is not the kind of quarterback to repeat those kinds of mistakes in the postseason. Furthermore, Matt LeFleur has proven to be a top coach who can game plan against the best defenses. Aaron Rodgers will use his advantage in coaching to take this victory over Tom Brady and the Bucs.
However, it would be foolish to brush over Brady’s ability to lead the Bucs to an upset in the postseason. As previously mentioned, the Bucs defense played the Packers great in week 6. In order for Brady to have a chance at leading his team to the Super Bowl, they need turnovers. If they can put together another game plan that forces Rodgers to make a mistake, Brady will take advantage offensively. Furthermore, in their week 3 matchup, the Bucs dominated the match up at the line of scrimmage. Brady was sacked zero times and they ran for over 150 yards in that performance. Although it is unlikely they will repeat such a dominant performance, it is important that they implement a game plan that is somewhat reminiscent of that game.
Bills 27 @ Chiefs (Depends on Mahomes health)
This game prediction heavily revolves around the question marks surrounding the health of Patrick Mahomes. Furthermore, the Buffalo Bills seem to be riding a wave of dominance and excitement heading into this game. As of now, it is unclear whether or not Patrick Mahomes is playing in this matchup, and if he is, this game will not be competitive. In this scenario, I see the Chiefs scoring 13 points.
However, even if he does play there is still a lot of uncertainty about how healthy he will be during the game. Although they would not have Mahomes play unless he passes through concussion protocol it is unlikely he will be at 100%. Furthermore, there is still limited information being shared about the condition of Mahomes. Without Mahomes being at 100% the Bills will have the advantage to pull off a convincing win over the Chiefs. The offense of the Bills has been too dominant all season to not have Mahomes playing to his full potential. Before the Ravens game, the Bills offense scored more than 25 points in every game since November first. On top of that, their defense has not allowed more than 25 points since November 15th. In a scenario where Mahomes is clearly dealing with injuries during the game, they will score around 24 points.
As previously mentioned, this prediction has a lot to do with the health of Mahomes. Therefore, if he is in and looks healthy throughout the game the Chiefs’ chances of winning skyrocket. Mahomes and the Chiefs have had more experience in Conference Championships than Josh Allen and the Bills which will work to their advantage. Although the Chiefs have statistically been less impressive during the final stretch of the regular season, a healthy Patrick Mahomes and Chiefs offense is the most dominant offense in the NFL. If the question marks surrounding the Mahomes completely clear up come game time I do not doubt their ability to beat the Bills. In a scenario where Mahomes is not dealing with injuries, they will prove to be too much for the Bills’ inexperience and score 31 points.