Added: Andrews Mckee - Date: 05.03.2022 13:38 - Views: 27859 - Clicks: 4504
He gave life to an organization dormant for nearly two decades and set up twisty plot points in a season that needed it. But it also was remarkable to see Brady making just enough great throws in the Superdome, the place where his legend truly began 19 years ago. The Bucs first made it clear they were Super Bowl contenders back in Week 6, when they stomped the Packers and changed the expectations for their season.
They were title contenders all along, despite undertaking a circuitous route to the NFL's Final Four that was aided by a helpful schedule. Like so many of Brady's teams, they have adjusted well within games and late in the season. The Saints were a matchup problem to overcome, and Tampa pulled it off, even if it wasn't pretty.
Despite all the familiar names Reid! The Bills' chance to ease Scott Norwood's pain is another beautiful diversion. All four potential Super Bowl matchups look fantastic, and there are no heavy favorites left, because all the teams still standing are simply too good. Sunday, p. Tampa's secondary has been boom-or-bust all year, like so many Todd Bowles groups. They can give up big plays or they can pick off four passes.
Rodgers made poor decisions against the blitz last time against Tampa, when he completed less than half his passes and threw zero TDs, but that is unlikely to happen again. He's going to test them vertically far more than Brees or Taylor Heinicke could. He adds more juice on the edge than veteran Preston Smith and allows the team to be creative in how it deploys Za'Darius Smith.
Gary had seven pressures against the Rams and combined with Kenny Clark for three sacks. The Packers need to bother Brady more than they did the first time the teams played. That will be tough to repeat, but Davis should be ultra confident coming off a game in which he shut down Michael Thomas. That shouldn't change against Tampa. Despite the Bucs' impressive s overall against the run, they have looked vulnerable against the Vikings, the Falcons and in both playoff games. LaFleur stays balanced with his play-calling, and it's worked. But Brady's underrated offensive line mostly held up, with the Saints' strong defensive line getting only one quarterback hit.
If Brady stays that clean, he should put up more yards against a Packers secondary that is not as deep as New Orleans in the back seven. I thought Sunday's tilt changed when Tampa started picking up chunks with Ronald Jones and Leonard Fournette on the final drive of the first half, a trend that continued after halftime against a great Saints run defense. The Packers' run defense is far from great, and Jones, who ran with great aggression in his return from injury Sunday, picked up yards last time against the Packers. Tampa's predictable tendency to run on first down and throw deep on third-and-short could have cost them against the Saints if the Bucs defense hadn't forced four turnovers.
The Packers, meanwhile, rarely seem to hit third down these days. The mind meld between Rodgers and LaFleur grows stronger each week, with more open receivers than I remember in any season during the Mike McCarthy era. But both offenses in this NFC title game should hold a distinct advantage over their defensive counterparts. As the Packers showed against the Rams, great offense beats great defense, even in cold weather.
Neither of these defenses are great. I expect Brady and Rodgers to put on a show. Don't listen to any armchair doctors on Twitter throughout the week. Chiefs coach Andy Reid's initially sunny, if vague, comments on Mahomes following the game were encouraging, though on Monday, Reid said Mahomes remains in the concussion protocol. Based on Henne's solid overall play in limited work in Kansas City, along with Reid's genius and the Chiefs' mental toughness, I would give them a chance.
But not much of one! Let's hope it doesn't come to that. It's probably safe to assume tackle Mitchell Schwartz , who hasn't played since Week 6, isn't coming back for this game, either, but the trio above should have a chance. The Chiefs could use as much offensive depth as they can muster next week after Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce carried them with over yards each against Cleveland.
Will Andy Reid trust it again? After that Week 6 win, in which Kansas City racked up yards on the ground, the running game went into hiding for the second half of the season, with huge troubles in short-yardage situations. On Sunday, however, sudden Chiefs starter Darrel Williams was vital to the victory effort. Reid still chose not to run the ball in obvious run situations late in the game despite Mahomes' absence, but Williams was highly effective, logging 78 yards on 13 carries.
Mahomes was also limping because of a toe injury on Sunday, so any threat on the ground would be vital against a light, fast Bills defense that will likely be geared up to stop the pass. The Bills will likely need both sides of the ball to play well to beat the Chiefs, but I consider the ability to win games in different ways to be the mark of a strong team. That's been the story of the Chiefs winning close games all season, and it was the story of the Patriots' two-decade reign in the AFC.
Consider it a good that the Bills are in the AFC title match without having played a complete playoff game yet. But I can't envision them slowing down Josh Allen for four quarters like the Ravens did, or even like the Chiefs themselves did back in Week 6. The Ravens provided one blueprint to follow, refraining from blitzing, dropping back into coverage and making Allen be patient. But the Bills adjusted in the second half, and the Chiefs don't have the same personnel in the secondary to make the strategy as effective as it was for Baltimore.
The offensive line is on a roll. But Cole Beasley , who has been dealing with a knee injury , hasn't looked percent; he and Gabriel Davis had zero catches on six combined targets against the Ravens. The backfield is also thinner without backup running back Zack Moss , who was lost for the rest of the postseason in the Wild Card Round.
It's going to take the full Bills arsenal firing to keep up in a shootout, assuming Mahomes plays. After Reid's show of bravado on Sunday, I want to see what he has in store for an encore. Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll also changes his plan dramatically each week, like when the Bills only ran the ball three times in the first half against Baltimore. That's a game plan Big Red would be proud of, and it hints at a pass-wacky matchup between the two best young quarterbacks in football this season. At least, we hope both quarterbacks are available. A great weekend of games was marred by the injuries to Lamar Jackson and Mahomes, and I've seen enough from backup quarterbacks in these playoffs, with all due respect to Henne's understudy turn as Drew Bledsoe.
Follow Gregg Rosenthal on Twitter. Gregg Rosenthal highlights 22 of the biggest developments from a busy cut-down day in the NFL, including the Patriots' bold move at quarterback. Is Micah Parsons the new face of the Cowboys' defense? How did Justin Fields fare in his second pro outing? What did we learn about each NFC team in the first full week of preseason action? Could the Colts turn to a rookie quarterback to fill in for Carson Wentz? Gregg Rosenthal takes a look at the juiciest tidbits escaping from training camps across the NFL. What's happened roughly a week into NFL training camp?
Gregg Rosenthal gets you up to speed with 16 things we've learned so far. How much does it mean that Danielle Hunter is back with the Vikings? What about Tua Tagovailoa's pick-fest? Gregg Rosenthal spotlights what matters and what doesn't as OTAs and minicamps wrap up. Gregg Rosenthal sorts out what matters -- like Dak Prescott's health -- from what doesn't -- like Jordan Love's performance -- in the news stemming from this week's OTAs and minicamps.
Will Carolina regret going in on Sam Darnold? Can Aaron Rodgers be appeased? Did Urban Meyer risk too much? Browns GM Andrew Berry's defense is looking better all the time. Does Kirk Cousins have reason to worry? How much did 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan help himself? Is Justin Fields facing an uphill battle in Chicago? Gregg Rosenthal spotlights winners and losers from the official start of the NFL free agency period -- including some quarterbacks who are surely breathing easier after moves involving Trent Williams and Rodney Hudson.
The Debrief. With that in mind, here's a first look at 16 things to watch on Championship Sunday:. Tampa Bay Buccaneers. NFC No. Green Bay Packers. Buffalo Bills. AFC No. Kansas City Chiefs. Related Content. See all the Action Replay every game all season. The browser you are using is no longer supported on this site.
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