NFL Conference Championship Previews

Posted: January 19, 2014 by ericbernsen in Inside The Odds, NFL, Sports, Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , ,

The NFL has received an ideal pairing of games for Sunday’s conference championship match-ups. The AFC Championship game could be the final postseason showdown between two of the best quarterbacks of all time in Tom Brady and Peyton Manning. Meanwhile, two of the most promising young passers in the game face off against the respective tough defenses of the 49ers and Seahawks. Both games have the potential to be classics and there are multiple story-lines that have dominated the topics of endless TV/radio talk shows this week. Let’s take a look at each match-up and preview what to expect. 

New England Patriots at Denver Broncos (-5.5, 55)

The Patriots and the Broncos have been two of the best teams in the AFC this season, despite both squads being devastated by injuries. Two of the best quarterbacks in NFL history will be facing off once again and the individual legacy of each one is at stake. However, on Sunday all that will matter to Tom Brady and Peyton Manning is figuring out how to expose the opposing teams’ defense. This task should not be a hard one and there should be a lot of points posted in this match-up. New England will need to continue to rush the passer and throw Peyton Manning off of his game as he tends be a wizard at the line of scrimmage. Denver certainly has a multitude of offensive weapons at their disposal, so the Patriots defense will have to be at their best in order to give Tom Brady a chance at keeping up. Luckily for the Patriots, the team has seen a resurgence in their rushing attack in recent weeks and that has taken some of the pressure off Brady. If the Pats can continue to successfully run the ball and control the pace of the game/keep the ball out of Manning’s hands, I think they have what it takes to pull out a close victory in Denver. Look for this to be another classic match-up that should go down to the wire.

San Francisco 49ers at Seattle Seahawks (-3.5, 39)

The NFC game has just as much potential to be an instant-classic. The 49ers and Seahawks are two evenly matched teams with stout defense being a forte of each. Seattle should benefit from their outstanding home field advantage, but Russell Wilson will need to step up and have a huge game in order to move on to the Super Bowl. Running back Marshawn Lynch is a workhorse, but a key in this game will be whether the Seahawks have the receivers to shake up the 49ers strong defense. Meanwhile, QB Colin Kaepernick and the 49ers offense is at full force with RB Frank Gore, WR Michael Crabtree, and TE Vernon Davis leading the charge. San Francisco seems to be playing their best football at the right time and they will need to continue their great play of late if they want to pull out a victory on the road. Seattle is a tough place to play and the Seahawks have been dominant throughout most of the season, but I think the 49ers will come in and squeak out a win in a low-scoring contest.

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