Super Bowl 2017: Initial Vegas Odds with AFC, NFC Championship Games Set

Andy Bailey@@AndrewDBaileyFeatured ColumnistJanuary 15, 2017

ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 15:  Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers throws a pass in the first half during the NFC Divisional Playoff Game against the Dallas Cowboys at AT&T Stadium on January 15, 2017 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The divisional round is history and the conference title games are set. After taking care of their respective opponents this weekend, the Atlanta Falcons, New England Patriots, Green Bay Packers and Pittsburgh Steelers are all one step closer to the Super Bowl.

It's a solid, even historic field, with future Hall of Fame signal-callers Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Ben Roethlisberger as well as MVP candidate Matt Ryan still alive.

Every team has plenty of reasons to be optimistic, but it ultimately comes down to those four men. They're among the best quarterbacks in NFL history, and each enters this fatal four-way with a chance to enhance his legacy.

Early Super Bowl odds from OddsShark favor Brady and the Pats, but the rest of the field will have plenty to say about that next week: 


Packers at Falcons

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 14:  Matt Ryan #2 of the Atlanta Falcons drops back to pass against the Seattle Seahawks during the game at the Georgia Dome on January 14, 2017 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images

The Packers are still running the table. With the winning streak at eight games since the now-famous remark from Rodgers, it's starting to feel like his team may have some destiny on its side.

And it looks like Rodgers can feel it.

After the Dallas Cowboys tied Sunday's divisional-round game late in the fourth quarter, Rodgers wasn't rattled, per the Philadelphia Inquirer's Zach Berman:

Rodgers proceeded to engineer a magical, 35-second game-winning drive punctuated by a play and scene in the huddle that are tough to imagine happening outside a Hollywood script. Robert Klemko of The MMQB shared the setup:

The NFL shared the video:

After the unbelievable finish, legendary receiver Jerry Rice tweeted what's undoubtedly on the minds of millions of football fans:

But Rodgers and the Packers have to win a ninth straight before that potential matchup with Brady and the Patriots. And the team in the way, Ryan's Falcons, won't just lay down in the name of Green Bay's history.

If anyone's close to as hot as Rodgers right now, it's Ryan. After Saturday's win over the Seahawks, he now has the highest postseason completion percentage in history, per Football Outsiders' Scott Kacsmar:

And his always solid and often explosive play during the regular season led NFL Network's Deion Sanders and LaDainian Tomlinson to proclaim him the MVP:

With two of the best gunslingers the NFL has to offer, the NFC title game figures to be an intense and entertaining treat.


Steelers at Patriots

FOXBORO, MA - JANUARY 14: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots looks to pass in the second half against the Houston Texans during the AFC Divisional Playoff Game at Gillette Stadium on January 14, 2017 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Jim Rogash
Jim Rogash/Getty Images

On the AFC side, Roethlisberger's kicker picked him up in a game in which the Steelers failed to score a single touchdown.

Pittsburgh's Chris Boswell made an NFL-record six field goals in Kansas City, per NFL Research:

While they didn't find the end zone on Sunday, the Steelers may have the most explosive quarterback-running back-receiver trio left in the field.

Le'Veon Bell finished the divisional round with 170 rushing yards on 30 carries. Antonio Brown racked up 108 receiving yards on six catches, including a game-sealing first-down grab with less than two minutes to play.

Awaiting that attack now is Bill Belichick and the Pats, who will surely have as solid a plan as anyone for slowing it down.

But again, it might just depend on quarterback play. And New England may have the best postseason performer that position has ever produced.

According to NFL on CBS, Brady has more playoff victories than 27 teams:

And he and his coach have been here too many times to be anxious about the Steelers. In fact, per NFL Research, the duo of Belichick and Brady has been to nearly twice as many conference title games as any other:

Will the Steelers' star-powered offense be able to stand in the way of another trip to the Super Bowl for Brady or will the historically dominant Patriots march through another title game?

Either way, history will be on the line for two of the NFL's most storied franchises.