2013 NFL Playoffs

NFL Playoff Scenarios: Breaking Down Path to Most Intriguing Divisional Matchups

FOXBORO, MA - NOVEMBER 18: Andrew Luck #12 of the Indianapolis Colts shakes hands with Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots following their game on November 18, 2012 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)
Jared Wickerham/Getty Images
Tim KeeneyContributor IJanuary 2, 2013

If your favorite team is out of the playoffs (hi, Chiefs fans), then you're going to need something to root for over the next month.

You can go with the highly publicized feel-good stories of Peyton Manning or Adrian Peterson. You can ride the underdogs and hope for some good ol' fashioned mayhem. You can even express your approval for the rookie quarterbacks during this unique postseason that is full of them. 

I guess those are decent routes, but if you want the most appealing divisional-round matchups, here's a look at the teams you should be rooting for this weekend.


Potential Divisional Round Matchup: Indianapolis Colts at Denver Broncos

Why You Want to See It

Um, seriously? It's the new Peyton Manning and the feel-good Colts going up against the old Peyton Manning, who might be the only person on the planet who wants to see Indianapolis lose. 


What Needs to Happen

In addition to the Colts needing to pull an upset over the Ravens in Baltimore, the icy-cold Houston Texans must knock off the red-hot Cincinnati Bengals at home. 


Potential Divisional Round Matchup: Houston at New England

Why You Want to See It

The revenge factor. New England destroyed Houston less than a month ago, and it would be interesting to see how the stumbling Texans respond.


What Needs to Happen

The Texans must beat the Bengals.


Potential Divisional Round Matchup: Indianapolis at New England

Why You Want to See It

It's no longer Peyton vs. Brady, but it's always fun when these two teams go head to head. 


What Needs to Happen

In addition to the Colts beating the Ravens, the Bengals would have to knock off the Texans.


Potential Divisional Round Matchup: Seattle Seahawks at Atlanta Falcons

Why You Want to See It

Roddy White and Julio Jones, arguably the best wide receiver duo in the NFL, going up against Richard Sherman and Brandon Browner, the most physical cornerback tandem in the league. I'd be OK with that. 


What Needs to Happen

Seattle needs to beat Washington while the Green Bay Packers need to hold off the Minnesota Vikings on the other side of the bracket.


Potential Divisional Round Matchup: Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers

Why You Want to See It

The offense with the most firepower in the NFC going up against the most ferocious defense. Usually you have to pay double for that kind of action.


What Needs to Happen

The Packers need to win. That's all. 


Potential Divisional Round Matchup: Washington Redskins at San Francisco 49ers

Why You Want to See It

Not only do you want to see Robert Griffin III and Alfred Morris play as much as possible, but seeing if the 'Skins' option offense works against San Francisco's non-human linebackers would be must-see TV. 


What Needs to Happen

The Redskins need to win and Green Bay needs to lose to Minnesota. 


Potential Divisional Round Matchup: Seattle Seahawks at San Francisco 49ers

Why You Want to See It

Divisional rivalry that saw each team beat the other once in the regular season. Two young studly quarterbacks. Two powerful running games and two hard-nosed defenses. Two coaches that hate each other.

You know, to name a few reasons.


What Needs to Happen

The Seahawks will have to knock off RGIII and company while the Vikes will have to upset the Packers for the second week in a row. 


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