Look for Bucs, Chiefs to advance


Brentton Wharton, staff writer

After two weeks of amazing games we are down to four teams in the NFL Playoffs.

Probably the two most wanted matchups are the ones we got. Battling for the two spots in the Super Bowl will be the Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills on one side, and the Green Bay Packers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the other. Mahomes versus Allen and Brady versus Rodgers, two great games are in store this weekend.

First we’ll start in the NFC where Tom Brady and the Buccaneers will travel to Lambeau Field in Wisconsin to take on the Green Bay Packers.

This is a really hard one to pick apart. The Bucs right now are on a huge playoff run after taking out the Saints but Green Bay has been the cream of the crop all year and it’s hard to see them losing.

These two teams are very familiar with each other, having met earlier this season. In week five of the regular season the two teams met in Tampa Bay. That game was a 38-10 thrashing by Tampa Bay, but I have a feeling it will not look like that this time.

This time the game will be in Green Bay and that home field advantage will play a huge factor for the Packers. Earlier in the season the Buccaneers were able to smother the Green Bay run game after the first quarter as well as intercept Aaron Rodgers twice and I just don’t see any scenario in which GB plays that bad again. I think this game will be back and forth with a few lead changes mixed in.

I’m seeing 250+ passing yards from both Aaron Rodgers and Tom Brady but what I think will be the difference maker is the running backs. Whichever teams backfield can complement their quarterback will win this game. Green Bay’s only weakness all season has been the defense; it’s been an absolute achilles heel and I see it being exposed again in this game. It’s hard to bet against the Packers this year with the way Aaron Rodgers is playing, but it would take a lot more for me to bet against any Tom Brady led playoff team. I think the Buccaneers win this and advance to the Super Bowl with a score of 33-28.

In the AFC it’ll be the Buffalo Bills visiting Arrowhead Stadium to take on the defending Super Bowl champions, the Kansas City Chiefs.

These two teams also met earlier this year in Buffalo week six of the regular season. That game was a slow paced matchup won by KC 26-17. In that game Kansas City had more than 200 total yards of offense and possessed the ball for 15 more minutes than the Bills.

The Chiefs won that game with their rushing attack, which was unusual, and it exposed a huge weakness in that Bills defense. The Chiefs as a team had 46 rushing attempts for 245 rushing yards averaging five yards per carry. That October night was cold and wet and this Sunday could be in similar conditions.

The Bills’ defense will need to be strong, specifically up in the front seven. They can’t allow the Chiefs’ running backs to reach the secondary before first contact. For Kansas City the question is ‘how do you stop Stefon Diggs’? I think you can’t, if he catches seven passes for 60 yards and a touchdown I think you can say you’ve done your job. They don’t need to stop him, just slow him down. Don’t let him get over the top of defense, and don’t let him get in rhythm with multiple touchdown catches.

Buffalo has had a very weak rushing attack all year, so KC can expect pass after pass. The running game will be paramount for both teams in this game, the Bills need to contain it and the Chiefs need to maintain it. If Kansas City can add control of the clock on top of their ability to score points, they’ll have the ultimate recipe for success. If the Bills can defend the run and keep the clock work even, then they’ll keep the game at bay.

The Bills are hot right now, but the Chiefs are the Chiefs, and in the playoffs they come alive and I don’t think this Bills team is gonna knock them off just yet. I have the Chiefs winning their second AFC Championship in a row, and going to their second Super Bowl in a row with a score 34-30.

Score Predictions:

TB Buccaneers 33, GB Packers 28

KC Chiefs 34, Buf. Bills 30