Week 11 AFC Playoff Predictions: Who Wants It More?
With the NFL season almost three quarters over by week's end, it make you start to wonder whether or not your team has what it takes. Perseverance and heart are what makes up a real team, unless you are a money hoarding, super team like the Dallas Cowboys, and look where that got them!
The Tennessee Titans This team is off to a franchise best 9-0 through Week 10. The momentum train will continue through week 11 but will come to an end in Week 12 and they will see a crashing halt to the end of their season. When I talk about football with people, they always want facts and stats. So you want them here they are: 22nd in the NFL in total yards, 12th in the NFL in defending the pass, and only 10th in points scored. Those are not the stats that make up a Super Bowl team, but merely an impressive season to date. They will be good enough to grab the top spot in the AFC, but they will end their season a mere average for a top seeded team: 13-3
- The Pittsburgh Steelers The Pittsburgh Steelers have been in the pits lately, but I predict a seasonable change for them. As the weather become colder, the team will get hotter! A scoffing 6-3 through Week 10 is nothing to brag about, but a healthy Ben Roethlisberger will return and so will an offense that scores. They may own one of the league's worst offenses, but their defense is No. 1! The team is producing when it matters most however, the conference record is second best in the AFC, and third best in the NFL at 5-1. The final record will be mediocre at best with a 12-4 finish thus ending the season with a four game winning streak and seeing a first-round bye.
The New England Patriots What a season! The injury to Brady, the injury to Maroney, the injury to Thomas, and I could go on but I do not have the time nor patients to sit here all night! Another team with a 6-3 record, Who'd a thunk it? We could also sit here all night and reminisce of the good old times, but we do not have to, because they are back and they are resting on the shoulders of Matt Cassel. This young, second-string quarterback has gone from an ugly start to a hot finish! The running game has found their stride in BenJarvus Green-Ellis and the defense has recovered, even with nobodies and rookies starting. Statistically they are average at best but when you add in the circumstances and events leading up to this point and you are looking at one of the better performing teams in the NFL. The season outcome will end with a 11-5 finish and thus capping one hell of a record for the conditions they are playing in!
- The Denver Broncos Wow, I never thought I'd be saying this after the last few games they have played, but better times are coming? After a 34-30 win versus Cleavland last Thursday night, it made me believe that there is still a team of believers behind all of those pads. With upcoming opponents including the Raiders, Falcon, and Jets it leads to speculation that they will end the season with a decent record.Statistically they have one of the better offenses not just in the AFC but the entire NFL. I am not saying that they are a Super-Bowl-caliber team like they were in the Elway era, but they are good enough to finish at 10-6. A wild-card elimination is practical and very ethical for all fantasy football players!
- The Indianapolis Colts The start to the 2008 season was abysmal and lacked everything. After that, they still aren't an impressive team holding steady at 5-4 through Week 10. Sometime during the move to Lucas Oil Field, they must have sent their offense packing, because they are only ranked 23rd in both points scored and total yards. I am not being bias toward offensive ranks because trust me, their defense is no better. Defending the rush must be more confusing on new turf because they are allowing 134 yards rushing per game. Nine of the 13 members on the injury list as of Week 10 are members of the defense. Peyton Manning may be the greatest performer on TV but his brother is performing better on the field, where it matters most! The Colts will finish up at 10-6 and clinch the No. 1 wild-card spot, and Peyton will at least have a comedy career ahead of him after this hysterical season is finally over.
- The Baltimore Ravens The decision to put Joe Flacco in the drivers seat in 2008 was surely not one I would have made, but they have proved us wrong again! For a team that is part of a great division, maybe not this year after the collapse of the Browns and Bengals, but it is hard to be over looked and they are used to that by now. The third-ranked rushing game in the league has certainly helped Flacco find a groove, not that he has been consistent, but never the less he still isn't going anywhere.With one of the top defenses in the league including the number one rush defense and the number two defense in total yards given up, it makes you ponder whether or not a defense wins games? Being yet another team with a 6-3 record to this point makes it hard to categorize them as being a playoff team or not. Sadly if 10-6 was good enough to grab a playoff spot for the Colts, It makes a 9-7 finish for the Ravens understandable.
Just Missed The Cut
The Buffalo Bills: Currently 5-4 Finish : 8-8
The New York Jets: Currently 6-3 Finish : 8-8
The Miami Dolphins: Currently 5-4 Finish : 7-9
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