Playoffs, let’s go: Brady against Phila, which challenge between Buffalo and New England

Wild cards over the weekend: the challenge between Bills and Patriots and the one between Cowboys and 49ers stand out. Four coaches jump

A peek back at what happened on the last day of the NFL regular season and above all a look ahead, to the future, to the upcoming playoffs. It is already time to present the six wild card games, the first step towards the Super Bowl LVI scheduled at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles, on February 13th.


Never like this time. Because the results amounted to verdicts. Among the promoted San Francisco, Pittsburgh and Las Vegas who have been able to conquer at least another week of football by winning in extra time. The Californians are enjoying a full-blown hero in the Bay, Deebo Samuel, super receiver, runner, in the success over the Rams even trick-playing quarterbacks, and an unexpected one, Jimmy Garoppolo, who proves to the critics that he has character, at least. Pittsburgh celebrates in Baltimore thanks to the phenomenal TJ Watt, the quarterback catcher, who reaches 22.5 sack putting his hands on Huntley, equaling Strahan’s every era record, and with Big Ben Roethlisberger distilling the last drops of blue blood for storm the Ravens house. The Raiders triumph in the name of sport. Not settling for equal and winning with football at the end of Carlson not only avoided a gigantic controversy about the inability to place a match as Sunday Night whose outcome for the protagonists depended on results already matured (with a draw the Chargers would have qualified as well ), but it is a reminder of the spirit of the game: you play to win games. In the face of calculations, tanking and cunning. Between the Indianapolis and Los Angeles flops. The Colts lose to the team with the worst record when they would go to the playoffs with a win in Jacksonville. Thunderous and distressing defeat, Wentz first accused: he rediscovers himself a lost ball machine … The Chargers fought until the last second, they pay for the inadequacy of Coach Staley who wasted so much, too much talent.


Speaking of coaches… four are missing. Vic Fangio of Denver, Matt Nagy of Chicago, Mike Zimmer of Minnesota, and exemptions were announced, but so was Brian Flores of Miami, despite the winning record. Highly regarded person, but three seasons without playoffs in the NFL are not worth the bonus of a quarter of these times of all right now, as claims of results. During the season, Gruden in Nevada and Meyer in Jacksonville had already been blown due to assorted scandals.


Saturday, 10.30pm Italian time: Cincinnati-Las Vegas. Playoff debut for Burrow. The Bengals super quarterback leads an explosive attack, worth 27 points per game, with Chase, probable offensive freshman of the year, the first sumptuous target. Cincy is inexperienced, but she is more talented than the Raiders, who have won the first playoffs since 2016 with a losing point differential, but now have the advantage of being able to play with nothing to lose and Crosby who in the pass rush can scare a line of players. mediocre attack. Favorite Cincinnati, however. Saturday night, 2.15 am, Buffalo-New England. Divisional derby, already played twice this season, one success on each side. Favorite bills, but not a foregone challenge. Buffalo wins it if he makes an attacking match, the guests don’t have the numbers to keep up. Coach Belichick can win again in Buffalo if he replicates the recipe from the previous one: racing and defense. Again and again. Playoff debut for Mac Jones, who is very good, but still a freshman quarterback. Allen offers more physicality, greater guarantees. Sunday, from 2.15 at night Kansas City-Pittsburgh. Overfavorite Chiefs, Mahomes has not yet brought out the best, he can do it at any time. A month ago it ended 36-10 for the AFC reps from the last two Super Bowls. Which can only lose if they underestimate the opponents, limited, but tough, and will lose the oval several times, making the values ​​jump. Probable last NFL game of Roethlisberger: deserves a farewell to applause. Anyway.


Sunday, 7pm Tampa Bay-Philadelphia. The champions, Tom Brady’s team, with the field advantage. Obvious favorites. Especially because the Bucs will find some injured players, Fournette, Barrett, JPP, maybe David, and their Achilles heel, the secondary, is opposed to a racing attack: Hurts, the quarterback in essence is above all a running back. At home Tampa has only lost once and the excellent line should allow Brady to have time to find Gronk and Evans. Sunday, 10.30 pm Dallas-San Francisco. On paper the most intriguing wildcard. Simplistic to say the Boys’ attack, from 407 yards per game, against the defense of the 49ers, from 310 conceded per game. Prescott, capable of fireworks, but also of sensational misfires, will have to remember Elliott to keep his balance and keep Bosa, the host pressure, away. The other joint, the attack on the Californian races, with Samuel added value, as opposed to the defense of the Texans, can be decisive. Diggs and Parsons, Coach McCarthy’s defensive stars are called to overtime. If San Francisco dominates the possession time, in fact, it can place the surprise. Monday night from 2.15am Los Angeles Rams-Arizona. The Rams were built, rightly or wrongly, to win fast: Super Bowl or failure. Arizona after a 7-0 start to the season seems to be in a dive. Los Angeles has multiple point guards on both sides of the pitch: Stafford, Kupp, Donald and Ramsey featured. Murray is not in a great moment but away from home the Cards are dangerous. But their best version would be needed, and it hasn’t been admired for a long time …

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Playoffs, let’s go: Brady against Phila, which challenge between Buffalo and New England