Super Bowl LIV: Who’s Hot and Who’s Not

Emma McNeeley, Feature Editor

Right now we have witnessed Wild Card Weekend and are preparing for the upcoming Super Bowl. We saw games go into overtime and great passes and touchdown moments to remember, and now it’s time to guess who’s gonna get farther. 

           We have reached the playoffs and there’s a good number of guesses on who’s coming out on top. The playoffs contain teams from the American Football Conference (AFC) and the National Football Conference (NFC) who are playing against each other for a chance to reach the ultimate game—the Super Bowl. Each team is placed in seeds, and the top six seeds play at the playoffs. 

           In the AFC there are several teams with good odds. The Baltimore Ravens have come out on top with their season, and they are the only team in the NFL to hold a perfect record in multiple Super Bowl appearances, so the odds are on their side. They reached a top spot in the playoffs being the No. 1 seed along with Kansas City Chiefs and the New England Patriots. 

 The Patriots played on Jan. 4 against the Tennessee Titans and lost at 20-13. Running back Derrick Henry carried the Titans to the win with 182 yards and a touchdown . Now the Titans will be traveling to Baltimore for Jan. 11  to face the Ravens. 

The Buffalo Bills season run came to an end with their defeat to the Houston Texans on Jan. 4. The Bills were hoping for their first playoff win in 24 years, however the Titans Quarterback Deshaun Watson managed to run a touchdown when they were down to the Bills and after that threw for a touchdown sending the game into overtime. The Texans ended up with a 22-19 victory. 

When it came to the NFC’s season end, the top three seeds all had the same record of  13 wins and 3 losses. However, once the San Francisco 49ers defeated the Seattle Seahawks in the last game of season play, they took the top seed. 

During Wild Card Weekend, the Vikings beat the Saints in overtime  26-20 with huge plays from running back Dalvin Cook totalling 130 yards and two touchdowns, which helped the Vikings receive the win.

In another Wild Card match up,  Philadelphia Eagles and Seattle Seahawks played where the Seahawks beat the Eagles 17-9. During the first quarter, Carson Wentz got concussed and the Eagles took a beating throughout the game in their attempts, but Seahawk rookie wide receiver DK Metcalf scored what ended up being the winning touchdown. Along with that he had a 36-yard catch and by the end had a total of seven catches. 

The 49ers, Ravens, Chiefs and Packers, all got a break due to their top spots and don’t have to play until the divisional round which takes place this weekend . Saturday will have the Vikings and 49ers play at 4:35 p.m. and at 8:15 p.m. is the Titans and the Ravens. Sunday will have the Texans and Chiefs at 3:05 p.m. and the Seahawks and Packers will be at 6:40 p.m.

When it comes to the upcoming games, everyone has their own predictions on who they think could win. For the Vikings and 49ers match up the 49ers have a better record offer a more versatile offense and their defense seems good on every level. They also have the advantage of home field for this game as well. 

For the next game in the AFC division, for me it’s in the Ravens’ favor. We’ve seen how they can flip the script on many teams plans throughout the season. They have dominated their season with 12 straight victories and I don’t see them losing that streak against the Titans, who are the No. 6 seed. 

In the NFC,  when the Texans played against the Chiefs during the regular season on Week 6, the Texans won 31-24. Although this could leave the Chiefs in a vulnerable position as they had defeated once, the Chiefs have managed to improve their defense since that loss, and I could see them having a possibility of winning against the Texans, if they play it right. 

Lastly, we have the Seahawks and Green Bay Packers. The Seahawks have pushed their way through victory against the Eagles during the season, and could counter against the Packers. Seattle has been matched up against  Green Bay three times in the playoffs and previous years , and the home team has always won. Green Bay won in 2003 and 2007 while the Seahawks 2015. You could argue that the Packers will win again because of home field advantage but I see Seattle coming out on top after the strong performance from team returner Marchawn Lynch working together with rookie talent DK Metcalf. 

If my predictions are right, the AFC championship game will have the Chiefs and Ravens, and the NFC could have the Seahawks and 49ers. My final guess, is that Seahwks and Ravens will go to the Super Bowl, time to see what happens in the following weeks.