New England Patriots: Picks and predictions for the NFL playoff games

NEW ORLEANS, LA - SEPTEMBER 17: Rex Burkhead /
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The New England Patriots don’t yet know who their opponent will be in the Divisional Round of the playoffs this season, but I think I do.

The New England Patriots are once again the best team in the AFC and they will have to await the results of Wild Card weekend before they find out who their opponent is in the Divisional Round.

Well, I think I know just who the Patriots will play in that game, and every other NFL playoff games, as they make a run toward Super Bowl LII. Here, I’ve done my best to predict every 2018 NFL playoff game, and who knows, I may just be right.

Wild Card Round


#5 Tennessee Titans at #4 Kansas City Chiefs

The Tennessee Titans defeated the Jacksonville Jaguars in week 17 to sneak into the NFL Playoffs, but they are not a good football team. They rank 23rd in total offense and 17th in points allowed. QB Marcus Mariota finished the season with 13 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. Not good. The Chiefs should win this game easily behind an improved Alex Smith with a ton of weapons. The score may remain relatively close, but Tennessee will never actually have a chance to win the game.

Prediction: Chiefs 27, Titans 13

#6 Buffalo Bills at #3 Jacksonville Jaguars

In the second AFC Wild Card game, it’s all about defense. The Jacksonville Jaguars have one of the best in the league, allowing just 16.8 points per game in 2017. They get it done with pressure up front from Calais Campbell (14.5 sacks) and Yannick Ngakoue (12.0 sacks), as well as with turnovers from A.J. Bouye (6 interceptions). That defense is what will earn the Jaguars a win over the Buffalo Bills, even though their offense will struggle to score as well.

The Bills averaged just 18.9 points per game this year, but they won’t even put up that much in Jacksonville this week.

Prediction: Jaguars 17, Bills 7


#5 Carolina Panthers at #4 New Orleans Saints

This should be a very fun game to watch. Any time division rivals clash in the playoffs, it’s a good game. The bag of tricks sometimes needs to be taken out when teams are so familiar with one another. This year, the Saints swept the Panthers. In week 3, they won big on the road 34-13, and in week 13 they earned a 31-21 win at home in New Orleans.

In the playoffs, I predict a similar score, with the New Orleans Saints again coming out on top.

Prediction: Saints 32, Panthers 24

#6 Atlanta Falcons at #3 Los Angeles Rams

Atlanta did not have as much success in 2017 as many predicted they would. They were lucky to make the playoffs, but they’re a threat with Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, and Devonta Freeman. None of those three players put up their usual numbers though.

The Rams, on the other hand, are the big surprise of the year. They nearly grabbed a top-2 seed, but even without that, they have a real chance to make it to the Super Bowl. QB Jared Goff finished in the top-10 in the league for passing yards (3,804), passing touchdowns (28), passer rating (100.5), and pass interception percentage (1.5%). The funny thing is, Goff isn’t even the Los Angeles Rams best player. Todd Gurley is.

Gurley finished the season with 1,305 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns. He is in the MVP conversation after a huge stretch run, and he could help to carry this Rams squad in the playoffs.

Prediction: Rams 37, Falcons 31