AFC

Top Seeds: 1. Patriots 2. Broncos 3. Colts 4. Bengals 5. Steelers 6. Chargers

Wild Card: Colts over Chargers, Steelers over Bengals

Divisional Round: Patriots over Steelers, Broncos over Colts

AFC Championship: Patriots over Broncos

NFC

Top Seeds: 1. Packers 2. Saints 3. Seahawks 4. Eagles 5. Panthers 6. Bears

Wild Card: Seahawks over Bears, Panthers over Eagles

Divisional Round: Packers over Panthers, Saints over Seahawks

NFC Championship: Saints over Packers

Super Bowl

Patriots over Saints 31-21

 

Analysis

 

Starting in the AFC, it looks like everything is stacked for the Patriots to take the number one seed in 2014. A schedule where their most difficult game, vs. Broncos, will again be in Foxboro. Their next two toughest games however will be on the road, @ Green Bay and @ San Diego. But with the strengthening of the secondary over the offseason (see Revis, Darrelle) it would seem that Belichick has finally at least somewhat recreated the kind of defense that won him three Super Bowls.

 

For the Broncos things won’t be so easy. Having to play all of the NFC West is not an easy task for any team, never mind one coming off of a pretty embarrassing Super Bowl loss. Traveling to Seattle early in the season will be a good benchmark for where they are.

 

Then again it’s  still the Patriots and Broncos conference and they will once again both easily make it to the championship, only this time it will be in Foxboro.

 

On the NFC side, it’s time for a reality check for Seattle. With new rules and emphasis on defensive holding and pass interface, the kings of committing those penalties without getting called (AKA The Legion of Boom) will come crashing back to Earth as they finally get called for those. Seattle games will probably be unwatchable at the beginning of the season as Richard Sherman and co. adjust to playing the game cleanly. They still manage to win the division but get rolled by the Saints in the second round.

 

The return of Aaron Rodgers means the return of the Packers to the conference title game, but the lack of offensive weapons behind Jordy Nelson means the Saints make it Glendale to meet New England in the Super Bowl.

 

The Patriots lead the Saints by 3 with under a minute left. Drew Brees is driving his team down the field. On a third down at midfield with 50 seconds left, Brees looks for Brandin Cooks but the pass is picked off by Darrelle Revis who returns it for a touchdown and the Patriots exorcise the demons in Arizona after their last trip their for a Super Bowl in the 2007 season, and take home number four.

 

 

Advertisements