It’s the most wonderful time of the year! No I am not suffering from a Christmas hangover as a matter of fact, you can call me Notorious AA or the Grinch. I loathe the commercialization of the Christmas holiday more than February 14th, but I digress. When that sweet little carol tune plays in my head I’m referencing the (holding in girlish giddy screams) NFL PLAYOFFS. This is literally what the whole entire season is for, the training camps in ridiculously humid, hot, sweltering weather. The behind the scenes locker room fights, sacrificing your body on the gridiron, missing your family for almost half a year. Few make it (well 12 to be exact) and at the end of the playoff run, one will be crowned Super Bowl 52 Champion.
Each and every year when the Panthers debit my account for my PSL payment and season tickets, it declines….I kid I kid, it declines and then I move money over and we’re good. Every year I think it’s all worth it to get that playoff feeling and after a year hiatus my boys are back. The teal and silver travel down to the Big Easy, a team that has handled our offense and defense in every game this year, but 3rd times a charm right? While I will dedicate a brand new post tomorrow to my embattled Panthers taking on Drew Brees and his possible swan song, I’m only focused on today’s matchups between Titans/Chiefs and Rams/Falcons(you’re welcome from the Carolina’s)
Tennessee Titans vs. Kansas City Chiefs
The Marcus Mariotta led Titans are headed to Kansas City for battle with Travis Kelce, Kareem Hunt, and Alex Smith. The Chiefs (10-6) were so explosive at the beginning of the year and I expect with a home field advantage they will be in attack mode with QB Alex Smith possibly playing his final games in Kansas City. A team that ranks 7th in passing yards and 9th in rushing yards is going to utilize all weapons this game. That’s a problem for the Titans looking target RB Hunt. The Titans(9-7) have a tight run defense so I expect Kareem Hunt to have to work for each and every yard, but Smith is an underrated QB and can really air the ball out punishing the Titans for leaving him even a second too long in the pocket. Defense won’t be enough to turn favor to the Titans.
Kansas City Chiefs 31 Tennessee Titans 17
LA Rams vs Atlanta Falcons
The Los Angeles Rams(11-5) are hosting the Atlanta Falcons(10-6) for an exciting wild card matchup. The Falcons who squeaked in thanks to Cam Newton and company are looking to extend their season based off of their highly touted defense and acclaimed DC Marquand Manuel. Matt Ryan will be Matt Ryan, the problem is which Julio Jones will show up. Jones, the leading receiver for the Falcons, also holds the record for most team drops this year. Those drops have been costly for Atlanta especially in the red-zone. Atlanta’s run defense is one of the fiercest in the land. The Falcons have allowed 23 points of fewer the last 6 games on pretty potent offenses. Expect Goff and Gurley Inc not to be moved by the touted defense. These young guys are proving all preseason predictions wrong, Goff with 28 touchdowns on the season and Gurley with over 1300 rushing yards are out here having fun and expect to win this game. Tickets are still available for the game ranging from $95-$195 and several concession items will be served in Ram Blue.
Los Angeles Rams 35 Atlanta Falcons 27
Check back tomorrow morning for my predictions for Sunday’s game and hold me accountable if I get completely embarrassed with my thoughts.