The NFL Playoffs Have Begun!

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Photo courtesy of Sporting News

The NFL playoffs have begun and fans gather with anticipation.

Carter White, The Scroll, Sports Editor

After a long period of games being postponed and COVID cases spreading even more rapidly, the National Football league (NFL) playoffs are finally here.

Entering the divisional round with fourteen teams over the past weekend, the Green Bay Packers went up against the Los Angeles Rams in Wisconsin. The final score of the game was 32-18 with the Packers coming out on top. The Rams’ did not have a horrible offense, however passing seemed to be a struggle because the Rams starting quarterback, Jared Goff, was playing through a thumb injury. The Rams focused on their run game which paid off for the Rams running back Cam Akers, finishing the game with 96 total yards and a touchdown.
The Green Bay Packers offense did surprisingly well against the least yards defense in the NFL, with Aaron Rodgers throwing for 296 yards and 2 touchdowns. The Packer’s run game was also very strong, finishing with 188 running yards for the team with Aaron Jones rushing in a touchdown as well as Aaron Rodgers. The betting spread had predicted that the Packers were going to win by giving the Rams 7 points.
The second game played last week was the Baltimore Ravens facing off with the Buffalo Bills in Buffalo. The final score was 17-3 in favor of the Buffalo Bills. The Ravens quarterback, Lamar Jackson, finished with 196 total yards and threw a pick-six. Lamar Jackson left the game at the beginning of the fourth quarter however because of suffering a concussion. Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen finished with 209 total yards and threw a touchdown. Once again, the spread was in favor of the Buffalo Bills by subtracting 2.5 points from the Bills.

The next playoff game was The Cleveland Browns against the reigning Super Bowl Champions, the Kansas City Chiefs. The Browns had this game in their grasp but the Chiefs’ offense was able to hold on to the lead with the final score of 22-17. The Kansas City Chiefs’ quarterback, Patrick Mahomes, left the game early with a concussion, prompting backup Chad Henne to enter the game and throw an almost costly interception, but at the end of the game he held on to the lead and sent the Chiefs to the AFC Championship game.

Finishing off the Divisional Round this past week was The Tampa Bay Buccaneers playing The New Orleans Saints. The battle of the oldies, one might say. Drew Brees played his last game of football against Tom Brady and his new offense with a lot more weapons than he had in New England. Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Antonio Brown, Rob Gronkowski, Lenoard Fournette, and Ronald Jones Jr. lead the Buccaneers to victory with a final score of 30-20. The Buccaneers offense did what they needed to, but the defense was the star of this game by forcing 4 turnovers with Drew Brees throwing 3 interceptions. Tom Brady did what he does best and won.

Going into the AFC Championship game will be the Buffalo Bills against the Kansas City Chiefs. The Chiefs are favored to win the game because of their incredibly strong offense. The Bills might put up a fight though because they also have a great offense and it would be great to see a shoot-out. Saugus High School student and athlete Sebastian Dalliare said, “The Bills will beat the Chiefs because Mahomes should not be able to play.”

Going into the NFC Championship, is the Green Bay Packers playing against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Green Bay. The Packers are favored to win due to their great offense and improving defense. The Packers have shown what they can do against good defenses, however, the last time the Packers played the Buccaneers, the Packers lost 38-10. That game however was in Tampa and the weather will affect this next game greatly. “The Packers will beat the Buccaneers because of the home field advantage and how the Packers offense can beat good defenses,” Dallaire stated. This game is bound to be a good one.