First off, I would like to congratulate the New York Giants and the New England Patriots for earning the right to fight for the Lombardi Trophy in Super Bowl XLVI. The teams and the fans have an exciting two weeks to prepare for the biggest game of the season.
For everyone else, we have 54 weeks before we have a chance to see if our teams will be competing for the Lombardi in Super Bowl XLVII.
I am going to save everyone a bunch of headaches, and tell everyone who is going to go. I am not just guessing, but using deductive reasoning.
This is actually the third time I have written this article. The first one, I predicted the correct participants, the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers. Though I had the outcome wrong, the formula still worked.
For this year, I was not able to use this same formula, because the lockout kept teams from having a normal off-season, so it was inaccurate.
So, for this installment, I am going back to the original formula, and will predict the participants for 2013.
First off, the teams that have no chance. These are the worst teams in the league in 2011. I am not saying some teams will not get better, and that some won't be much improved from last year, only that to be one of the worst teams one year pretty much means you will not be one of the best the next year.
These teams are already eliminated, so if they are your team, then sorry about your luck.
Now we address the teams that have a way to go, but are not quite there yet. These are teams with major coaching issues. Now, I know that some of you will say that there was a rookie coach in the championship game, but come on now, that was coincidence.
Then you have the teams that have improved, but haven't come far enough. This takes out the San Diego Chargers, Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos, Chicago Bears, Arizona Cardinals, Seattle Seahawks, Atlanta Falcons, Cincinnati Bengals and Tennessee Titans.
The next group to be taken out are the ones that would have to defy history to make it to the Super Bowl.
The New Orleans Saints—No team has ever played the Super Bowl in its own stadium.
Now, we will eliminate the choke artists. These are the teams that many believe will be in the Super Bowl, they will have excellent years and they blow it in the end, like always.
It has shown over the last many years, you have to have a franchise QB to win the Super Bowl.
All four remaining teams have one of those, so that is out of the picture. I had to include it because it is in the formula.
NFC: The Packers and Lions are both in the NFC North, so the regular season for these two teams is going to be crucial. If the NFC championship is played in the outdoors of Green Bay, the Packers will have the advantage. If played in Detroit, the Lions will.
Each team has an obvious weakness. The Packers defense has fallen off quick since their Super Bowl victory. The Lions also have defensive weaknesses, but there is no question that their defensive line is one of the best in the game.
With the Packers having to play a first-place schedule, and the Lions playing a second-place schedule, I give the advantage to the Detroit Lions.
AFC: Both teams have their franchise QB, but that advantage has to go to the Steelers, who have already been to three Super Bowls with Ben Roethlisberger, and Matt Schaub still has no playoff experience.
Unlike the NFC, both AFC teams have stellar defenses (first and second in the NFL), and offenses that are capable of putting points on the board.
Like the Lions, the Steelers will play a second-place schedule in 2012, while the Texans will play a first-place schedule.
As the championship games between these four teams will be amazing, there has to be a winner. The Steelers and Packers both suffered a Super Bowl letdown in 2012, but odds are they are both not going to make the Super Bowl in 2013.
Pittsburgh had the best defense in football in 2012, while the Packers had the third best offense. Pittsburgh had the 12th ranked offense, while the Packers defense was ranked dead last.
That being said, I would have to say if one was to return to the Super Bowl, it would have to be the Steelers.
That would leave the Texans and Packers out, meaning Super Bowl XLVII will be the Detroit Lions vs. the Pittsburgh Steelers.