The NFL Playoffs According to Madden 13 Simulation
In a league full of parity where anything can happen on any given Sunday, it can be nearly impossible to predict how games will play out.
But fortunately, EA Sports has given football fans the gift of Madden to simulate these potential outcomes. Playing through the entire 2013 NFL Playoffs revealed some surprises, but there were some familiar faces making postseason runs.
Let's take a look at the entire postseason, as told by Madden NFL 13.
WC: Cincinnati Bengals at Houston Texans
Texans running back Arian Foster fumbled on Houston's first play from scrimmage, and the Bengals never gave up the lead.
Four field goals from Josh Brown were all the Bengals needed to steal a win from the Texans. Houston struggled to get anything going offensively, as it was out-gained by Houston 259-167 in total yards.
Foster finished with just 10 rushing yards, but scored the game's only touchdown. The win sets the Bengals up with a trip to Denver in the divisional round.
WC: Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers
Minnesota rushed out to an early 7-0 lead on the game's opening drive, as Christian Ponder hit Jerome Simpson for a 71-yard touchdown pass. Blair Walsh added a field goal to give the Vikings a 10-0 lead.
But in the second quarter, Green Bay was given a boost by running back DuJuan Harris' 47-yard touchdown run. Mason Crosby tied the game at 10 shortly before halftime.
The Packers took the lead in the third quarter when Aaron Rodgers hit Randall Cobb for an 82-yard touchdown. Minnesota added a late field goal, but the Packers move on. With a win, Green Bay is scheduled to play the San Francisco 49ers next week.
WC: Indianapolis Colts at Baltimore Ravens
The two teams lit up the scoreboard early in Baltimore. Ravens running back Ray Rice scored on a 29-yard run to open the game before the Colts evened it up at seven after a nine-yard touchdown to Reggie Wayne.
Joe Flacco found Jacoby Jones for a 30-yard touchdown to end the first quarter, and Justin Tucker added a field goal to give the Ravens a 17-7 lead at halftime.
Bernard Pierce extended the Ravens' lead to 24-7 headed into the fourth quarter. After touchdowns by Vick Ballard and T.Y. Hilton, it looked as if the Colts were poised to make another memorable comeback, but they fell just short. The Ravens move on to play the New England Patriots.
WC: Seattle Seahawks at Washington Redskins
Robert Griffin III threw two first-half touchdowns to give the Redskins a 17-10 lead at the break. Seattle pulled even when Leon Washington caught a short pass from Russell Wilson and raced 41 yards to the end zone.
Wilson played well all game, completing 69 percent of his passes for 371 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. But this game was all about RG3, as the No. 2 overall pick threw for three scores and didn't turn the ball over.
The win sets Washington up with a trip to Atlanta to play the No. 1 seed Falcons.
DIV: Cincinnati Bengals at Denver Broncos
Trindon Holliday put the Broncos on the board first, scoring on a 70-yard punt return in the first quarter. Denver led 10-7 at halftime.
But the Cincinnati Bengals pulled away in the second half, as BenJarvus Green-Ellis ran 56 yards for a third-quarter touchdown. Another Josh Brown field goal put the Bengals up 16-10 headed into the fourth quarter.
Cedric Peerman sealed the game with a 32-yard touchdown run late in the fourth quarter. Peyton Manning was held to just 190 yards through the air and failed to throw a touchdown pass. Cincinnati failed the two-point conversion attempt, but won the game 22-10.
DIV: Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers
The 49ers led 3-0, but never regained the lead after that. Mason Crosby evened the score 3-3 before Aaron Rodgers hit D.J. Williams for a 46-yard touchdown on the last play of the first quarter.
Rodgers stayed hot into the second quarter, finding Jordy Nelson in the end zone for a 12-yard score. The Packers led 23-3 at halftime in San Francisco.
At the beginning of the third quarter, Rodgers dumped the ball off to running back DuJuan Harris, who raced 52 yards for the score to push the Packers' lead to 30-3. Colin Kaepernick threw a late touchdown and converted the two-point conversion, but the Packers won handily.
DIV: Washington Redskins at Atlanta Falcons
Kai Forbath kicked a 45-yard field goal to give the Redskins an early 3-0 lead, but Matt Ryan found Roddy White on the ensuing possession to take the lead. Matt Bryant kicked a field goal to increase the lead to 10-3 in the second quarter.
Forbath kicked two more field goals, cutting Atlanta's lead to 10-9 at halftime. The Redskins blew the game open in the third quarter, as running back Alfred Morris scored on a seven-yard touchdown run. Brandon Banks returned to the field and returned a punt 78 yards for a touchdown, pushing the lead to 22-10.
Matt Ryan threw two second-half touchdowns, but the Falcons couldn't catch up. Washington won the game and punched its ticket for Green Bay.
DIV: Baltimore Ravens at New England Patriots
Tom Brady was nearly perfect. Brady started the game with a nine-yard touchdown pass to Brandon Lloyd before adding three more in the first half.
New England led 31-7 at halftime, with Baltimore's lone score being a 70-yard touchdown from Joe Flacco to Anquan Boldin. Flacco found Dennis Pitta for a third-quarter touchdown to make it 31-14, but Brady found Stevan Ridley for his second touchdown of the day.
The Patriots won the game easily and will now face the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Championship.
NFCC: Washington Redskins at Green Bay Packers
The Packers struck first, as Aaron Rodgers hit Randall Cobb for a 32-yard touchdown on the game's first possession. But Robert Griffin III answered with a 51-yard touchdown to pull even, and the Redskins never looked back.
RG3 connected with Pierre Garcon for 52 yards and another touchdown to push Washington's lead to 14-7 at the end of the first quarter. The two teams exchanged field goals to end the first half, leaving the Redskins ahead 17-10.
Griffin and the Redskins held on and beat the Packers in Lambeau Field, 27-10. Washington is headed to New Orleans for Super Bowl XLVII.
AFCC: Cincinnati Bengals at New England Patriots
Tom Brady threw a pair of first-quarter touchdowns, while Andrew Hawkins and BenJarvus Green-Ellis each scored for the Bengals, leaving the score tied at 14 after the first quarter.
Stephen Gostkowski kicked a 31-yard field goal to give New England a 17-14 lead at halftime. The Patriots led 20-17 after three quarters before the fourth-quarter fireworks began.
The Patriots scored 10 quick points to push their lead to 30-17, but the Bengals fought back. Brandon Tate returned a kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown, and Andy Dalton threw a touchdown to give Cincinnati a late 31-30 lead. But with just 20 seconds remaining, Brady led the Patriots down the field for a touchdown and punched their ticket to New Orleans.
Super Bowl: New England Patriots vs. Washington Redskins
It was all Washington after one quarter. Brandon Banks returned a Zoltan Mesko punt 84 yards to the end zone before Alfred Morris scored to give the Redskins a 14-0 lead after one quarter.
But Tom Brady found Wes Welker for a 32-yard touchdown to start the second quarter, and the lead was down to 17-10 by halftime.
Danny Woodhead tied the game at 17 after returning the second-half opening kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown. Kai Forbath’s 33-yard field goal put the Redskins back ahead by three headed into the fourth quarter.
Brady found Welker for another touchdown, and Stephen Gostowski kicked a field goal to give the Patriots a late 27-20 lead. But with his back against the wall, RG3 found Santana Moss in the end zone to force overtime.
The Patriots won the toss in overtime, and Brady won the game on the first possession. Aaron Hernandez caught a 14-yard touchdown from Brady to give Bill Belichick his fourth Super Bowl ring.