NFL Playoff Scenarios: 10 Most Exciting Matchups We'd Love To See
The NFL Playoffs always have some great matchups, but there always are some great matchups that become a treat for audiences, and a few matchups that just don't end up happening.
We're going to look at the Top 10 matchups we'd all like to see, but of course, not all of them are possible. So here are the rules:
1. These games are potential matchups and aren't based on any one scenario, so you'll see the same teams with different opponents that can't happen in the same playoff scenario.
2. We're using all teams in the playoff race as of Dec. 28, 2010. So the Packers, Giants, etc., are still in play here.
3. This list includes a few Super Bowl matchups. It's all in play here.
Okay, there you go. Enjoy the list. If there's a matchup you want to see, feel free to add it in the comments.
Anyone who brings up the NFC West will have their NFL Fan Credentials revoked unless they are a fan of said team, in which case you will be made fun of.
10. New York Giants Vs. Philadelphia Eagles
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The third meeting between two division rivals always makes for great playoff drama. The Eagles swept the season series, so a third matchup would give the Giants a chance for redemption, and a victory here would make the two Eagle victories during the season a moot point.
Could the Giants finally contain Michael Vick?
Will Matt Dodge NOT kick the ball to DeSean Jackson?
This would be another great game in the series.
9. Indianapolis Colts Vs. Pittsburgh Steelers
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You've got the Indianapolis Colts, who went through a really bad stretch of games in November and now have recovered from a record standpoint and a health standpoint.
The Colts should have Joseph Addai back by this point, and the Steelers (presumably) will have Troy Polamalu back roaming the field.
So you have two of the best quarterbacks in the league squaring off against each other while two pretty good defenses smash it up.
Sign me up for this game!
8. Baltimore Ravens Vs. New England Patriots
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The Ravens are a different team after losing the biggest game of the year for them to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The Ravens lost to the Patriots 23-20 in Week 6, but those were two different teams than will take the field in January. The Patriots offense has been a monster to defend since they lost to the Cleveland Browns, and the Ravens defense is starting to look like the "Ravens" defense again.
Joe Flacco appears to have matured into a very reliable quarterback, Ed Reed still is one of the best at his position, and Ray Lewis still is a force to be reckoned with.
In New England, Tom Brady is Tom Brady, and every defense that play against him has to deal with that. Bill Belichick's defense once again is just lights out, and rookie Devin McCourty has been looking more like a third-year player than a rookie lately.
This game has the potential to be another 23-20 affair with no guarantee the Patriots will be the victor.
7. Green Bay Packers Vs. Chicago Bears
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The Packers and Bears meet up this weekend, and let's just assume for the sake of conversation the Packers win and now they're a lock for the playoffs.
The two teams then end up crossing paths again, so we have a rubber match between the two teams featuring the red hot Aaron Rodgers versus the Bears offense, which now appears to be somewhat solid after a very shaky start to the season.
Any meeting between these two teams when both are good is a free ticket to a good game. The fans would be well-rewarded by a third meeting between these two teams.
6. Pittsburgh Steelers Vs. New England Patriots
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The Pittsburgh Steelers have one of the best defenses in the league when Troy Polamalu is on the field and healthy.
The Patriots beat the Steelers 39-26 in Week 10, and that was just the first in a long string of victories that has yet to be broken.
With the Super Bowl on the line, the Patriots will be tougher to beat than ever, but that doesn't mean the Steelers are going to be pushovers.
If the Steelers can use their offense effectively, something Offensive Coordinator Bruce Aryans never has been able to do, this could be one of the best matchups the NFL will see all year.
5. Philadelphia Eagles Vs. Atlanta Falcons
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The Falcons got upset by the Saints at home this week, but that doesn't mean they're all of a sudden a bad team. The game wasn't a blowout, and the Saints just took advantage of the opportunities given them while the Falcons weren't as sharp as they have been most of the season.
Michael Vick has completely changed the game not only for the Eagles, but for every team that has to play the Eagles. Andy Reid has his best chance to win a Super Bowl in a long time with this team, and it may be a better team than the one that lost the Super Bowl.
The Falcons have multiple weapons on offense while Vick is a one man highlight machine that also has DeSean Jackson, Jeremy Maclin, and LeSean McCoy.
Falcons, Eagles, book it.
4. New Orleans Saints Vs. Atlanta Falcons
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After this week's game, wouldn't you want to see these teams go at it again?
The Falcons and the Saints are two gladiators battling it out in the NFC. To watch them do it one more time for a chance to go to the Super Bowl is something you don't need to break down. You just get ya popcorn for and enjoy it.
3. Indianapolis Colts Vs. New Orleans Saints
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A rematch from last year's Super Bowl, this game would have all kinds of intrigue to it.
Can Peyton Manning get his second ring?
Can Jim Caldwell coach a team to a Super Bowl victory?
Can the Saints and Drew Brees repeat?
Who wouldn't want to see this game? (Besides fans of the other teams in the playoffs)
2. New England Patriots Vs. Philadelphia Eagles
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The Patriots already are a favorite to not only be in the Super Bowl, but win it. Bill Belichick and Tom Brady have done it three times already, and there's nothing about the Super Bowl hype machine that's going to surprise them at this point.
So if they make it to the Super Bowl, why wouldn't you want to see Tom Brady versus Michael Vick?
This is a dream matchup that could very well become a reality the way the two teams are playing right now.
Belichick gets to try and contain the new Michael Vick while Andy Reid's defense gets to go up against an offense that is firing on all cylinders.
This is one of those potential "Live Up To The Hype" Super Bowls.
1. New England Patriots Vs. Atlanta Falcons
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This would be a matchup between the current No. 1 and No. 2 seeds in the playoffs. This is the matchup you want to see every year in the Super Bowl.
Like the previous slide, it's the best versus the best in Tom Brady versus Matt Ryan. Two great offenses with multiple ways to hurt you and two defenses that have very few weak spots.
You couldn't ask for a better matchup, and the next six weeks will determine if this scenario plays out.