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US Football Playoff Picks: Championship Games

By Scott Murphy

It’s one of the most evenly matched NFL championship weekends in years. Four National Football League teams are left and it’s a toss-up as to whether the Buccaneers will find treasure in the frozen tundra in Green Bay and if the Bills will make the ultimate charge against the Chiefs. When the clock winds down, two teams will be on their way to the Super Bowl on February 8th in Tampa, Florida. Scroll down below for the Global Sports Channel predictions…

Tom Brady

Tampa Bay Buccaneers (13-5) vs Green Bay Packers (14-3)

Sunday, January 24th, 3:05 ET at Lambeau Field in Green Bay, Wisconsin

 
Among the most intriguing facts about both the AFC and NFC matchups are that the teams already played each other this year during week six.
 
In the first matchup between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Green Bay Packers, the Bucs demolished the Pack, 38-10. But that was well before veteran Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers settled into his well-honed groove. The ensuing time also gave second-year head coach Matt LeFleur time to adjust.
 
If the Packers defense can get to Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady, then this could be a frustrating day for the Bucs, as they’re playing away from home in the cold confines of Green Bay’s Lambeau Field. With temperatures expected to be below freezing, it’s a question of whether the Buccaneers’ receiving corps will be up for the challenge. Because the weather’s not expected to bother Brady. He’s 34-7 when the thermometer ices up.
 
Rodgers has similar stellar stats in the cold weather with a record of 28-6. Fresh from an impressive win over the Rams, he may have other things on his mind. Win, and he’s in the Super Bowl for the second time in his career. Lose, and he’ll be one of only three quarterbacks in NFL history to have four losses in conference championship games. Expect lots of air hookups with receiver Devante Adams.
 
With both quarterbacks expected to be super sharp, it will come down to a big play or two. Look for Tampa Bay to make a critical play (like an interception or a recovered fumble) late in the game to seal it.
 
If so, it would mark Brady’s 10th Super Bowl appearance and the first time a team plays in its own stadium during the Big Game. Expect a nail biter.
 
Tampa Bay 30 – Green Bay 28
 
Green Bay
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Aaron Rodgers

Buffalo Bills (15-3) vs. Kansas City Chiefs (15-2)

Sunday, January 24th, 6:40pm ET at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri

 
When the Buffalo Bills played the Kansas City Chiefs in week six of the regular season, the Chiefs eked out a 26-17 win. Expect a similar tough battle in this championship game.
 
For starters, though Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes is expected to start, there’s no telling how the concussion he suffered last week will weigh on him mentally or physically. In addition, the Chiefs relied on their running game during the first matchup, as the Bills had tight defensive coverage on Mahomes’ favorite receiving targets, Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. If the Chiefs employ a similar strategy in this game the Bills may be ready for them.
 
As for the Bills, it will really come down to how hot quarterback Josh Allen gets with favorite go-to guy Stefon Diggs. If they connect often (Diggs had over 100 yards receiving last week), then the Bills’ scoring juggernaut can continue and the team will make the Super Bowl for the first time in 27 years (where they are 0-4). If not, the Buffalo’s running game (which only had 32 yards last week), will have to dramatically pick up the pace. With nearly three-quarters of their offensive plays relying on the pass, the Chiefs most likely know what their defense can focus on.
 
Mahomes is a master improviser and has the hottest of hands. In a bid to defend their Super Bowl title, look for the 25-year-old to build on his legend by making the throws he needs to down the stretch. Look for Hill to do a few touchdown dances as the Chiefs punch their Super Bowl ticket in a high scoring thriller.
 
Kansas City 35 – Buffalo Bills 31
Kansas City Chiefs
Buffalo Bills
Patrick Mahomes

Last Week’s Picks: 3-1

Total To Date: 8-2

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