The final four is set. We are officially down to three more games of the 2020-2021 NFL season. On one side, we got a pair of grizzled vets that look like they're not retiring anytime soon. The other side has two young rocket launchers, who seem to do the unthinkable every week.
All four teams playing in Championship Sunday next week are deserving. We had back-up QB's come in and put the team on their back. While one legend's dreams die, another continues. Let's get into my takeaways from the NFL Divisional Round.
RAMS VS. PACKERS
The Rams kept it close for the majority of the game. At the end of the day, we all knew the Rams weren't going to score enough points to keep up with Rodgers and the Pack.
As per usual, the Packers offense got off to a hot start and never looked back. Davante Adams got the better of Jalen Ramsey in their much anticipated battle. Although Adams didn't have eye-popping numbers (9 receptions, 66 yards, 1 TD), he had more success against Ramsey than anyone else in the league. Shows you how good Ramsey is when having 66 yards is considered a good day in the office against him.
The Rams were limited on offense due to Goff's injury. They couldn't answer when the Packers scored. I give McVay credit because he had some sweet play designs.
I'll never not get excited for the wildcat.
The same goes for the hook and ladder. One of the most electric plays in sports.
Even with all the trickery, it wasn't enough.
The Packers defense stepped up in a big way. Many, including myself, thought this unit was going to hold back the team. Tonight they showed this unit can help this team win the Super Bowl. They will have a huge test next week when they face a red-hot Bucs team.
RAVENS VS. BILLS
I'm assuming this will be blasted on repeat as Bills Mafia makes their way to Kansas City.
As much as I'm rooting for the Bills to win the Super Bowl, they haven't played their best football. We all know this Bills team can be as explosive as anyone in the league. The offense was supposed to be putting up 30+ points per game, and the defense was going to come for the ride. After the first two playoff games, it seems like the offense is now playing off the defense. You need to play complementary football in the playoffs, and that's exactly what Josh Allen and the Bills are doing.
It also helps when you get plays like this from your defense.
As for Lamar, it wasn't pretty. He was able to silence the haters for a week, but I feel like the social media world is on his back once again for not winning in the playoffs. The Ravens offense seemed pretty predictable. I feel like we've seen Greg Roman offenses do this in the past. When your only chance of getting a big play is when Lamar gets loose on a broken play, you have a very slim chance to win against a team like the Bills.
The Ravens need to get more playmakers around Lamar. Hollywood Brown is a solid receiver, but does he do enough where you can trust him to be your number one? Mark Andrews took a step-back this year as well. It's going to be interesting to see what the Ravens do with this offense this offseason.
Lastly, this is why Bills Mafia is one of the best fanbases in sports. When Lamar went down late in the game, Bills fans started to donate to his favorite charity.
I'm so excited for Bills Mafia!!! Lets go!!!
BROWNS VS. CHIEFS
It would've been so perfect to see Browns vs. Bills in the AFC Championship. As Buffalo fans continue to celebrate, Cleveland fans look back on what was truly a magical season. They can finally look forward to next year, not hoping a draft pick is going to save their franchise.
At halftime, I thought the Browns were done. Being down 19-3, Andy Reid and Patrick Mahomes on the other sideline, and playing in Kansas City? Yeah, that's a death sentence for every team in the NFL. This happened, and all of a sudden it seemed like the Browns were going to pull this game off.
I had ZERO faith in Chad Henne closing out this game. I thought to myself, "If the Browns can create a turnover, they can win this game" Well, I was almost right after Henne threw one of the worst passes in playoffs history.
At this moment, I had the Browns winning. I thought Baker was going to drive the Browns in for a touchdown, and the defense was going to make one more stop. Instead, none of that happened, and Chad fucking Henne called GAME.
That's just a gritty effort from a backup QB. Andy Reid told Henne to drop his big ass nuts on the table and go win the game. He did just that, and the Chiefs will be hosting their third straight AFC Championship game.
Also, I hope someone checked up on Tony Romo because I think he had a seizure, heart attack, and ejaculated when he saw the Chiefs call a play on 4th and inches.
BUCS VS. SAINTS
Right before kickoff, Jay Glazer reported this will be Drew Brees' last game if they lose.
It's something we all expected. When Drew Brees signed a contract with NBC Sports last offseason, we all knew this was probably his last season. I'm sure a press conference is coming in the next few days. It's sad to see one of my childhood legends calling it quits after a hall of fame career. I'm pretty excited to see what Brees can do in the booth.
On the other hand, a 43-year-old QB is about to play in his FOURTEENTH conference championship. To show you how crazy that is, here's how he stacks up against other legends in the league.
The Bucs offense did just enough to complement a Bucs defense that played very well. They were able to force four turnovers and officially nail Drew Brees' coffin. Must have been satisfying for those Bucs defenders, after getting dominated by him all these years.
Although the Saints offense was hard to watch, we did have one shining star. Sean Payton gifted America a beautiful Jamies Winston moment.
A beautiful play design. Something Payton stole from the Bears.
The difference between the Saints and Bears. The reason why one franchise has consistently made the playoffs when the other lives in mediocrity.
At the end of the game, it was cool to see Brees and Brady embrace. Two legends.
How about that dime from Brady to Brees' kid?
We got Rodgers vs. Brady for a trip the Super Bowl. Does it get any better than that?
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