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If the Playoffs Started Today – NFL Week 8

Colts vs Saints: Week 8's Prediction for the Super Bowl

And then there were two. With Denver dropping to Baltimore, the Colts and Saints are left as the only unbeaten teams in the NFL. The Rams and Titans finally won, leaving the Buccaneers, on a bye week, as the only winless team left. The long-touted return of Brett Favre to Green Bay ended with the Vikings winning 38-26 on four Favre touchdown passes. We also saw huge shakeup in the NFC East, and the 6 seed in the AFC continues to be unstable. With so much to think about, let’s look at what would happen if the playoffs started as of Tuesday, November 3:

NFC:

#1: New Orleans Saints

The Falcons did their best, but a late touchdown drive sealed their fate. Matt Ryan has now lost consecutive games for the first time in his career in the process. With the win, the Saints hold their position atop the NFC following the Vikings’ win. With a Vikings bye and the Panthers coming into New Orleans next week, don’t expect the Saints to relinquish their position.

#2 Minnesota Vikings

The Vikings are still fighting the Saints for home field advantage, and could very well get it before the season is through. Although it probably won’t happen before Week 12, when the schedule gets tough for the Saints (a Monday Night home game against New England). Up until then, the Vikings will cruise.

#3 Philadelphia Eagles vs. #6 New York Giants

Well, well, well. Here we are again. The Giants just can’t seem to get it together, losing in Philly 40-17. After starting 5-0, the Giants are now 5-3, while the Eagles have won two straight. What else can you say here? The Eagles have the Giants’ number.

#4 Arizona Cardinals vs. #5 Dallas Cowboys

The Cowboys took advantage of a Giants loss to climb into the rankings. They’ll look to do more against the Eagles next week. Meanwhile, the Cardinals are still fighting off the 49ers for the division. With so much on the line for both teams, this should be a fun one to watch.

AFC:

#1 Indianapolis Colts

The East has a new leader, and instead of being named after an adult horse, they’re named for a young horse. But still, the last of the East’s unbeaten teams has shown that they’re in a prime position to claim another Lombardi Trophy following an 18-14 dogfight victory against the 49ers. If they can get past the Pats in Week 10 and the Broncos in Week 14, they’ve got a good shot at going 18-1 just like the Patriots. Or 19-0. Whatever works.

#2 Denver Broncos

You figured it had to happen eventually, but the Ravens made it look convincing. 30-7 over the Broncos in Baltimore means Denver could be headed for another one of their great-starts-turned-miserable-finish, unless they can recover quickly. Now just one game ahead of the Pats, Bengals, and Steelers, the Broncos will have to get back on track next week against the Steelers, a tough task indeed. Though a match-up against the Redskins the following week helps.

#3 Cincinnati Bengals vs. #6 Houston Texans

The Texans are in the race? Stranger things have happened. For the third week in a row, the #3 Bengals face a different #6 team. The Bengals relaxed on their bye week while Houston beat up on Buffalo 31-10. Houston actually hasn’t looked that bad this season; look for them to pull a few surprises. Unfortunately for them, the Bengals have been the same way.

#4 New England Patriots vs. #5 Pittsburgh Steelers

Here we are again; these teams love facing off in big game situations. Both teams had their bye this week; next week the Pats host Miami and Pittsburgh visits Denver. Miami barely beat the Jets and fell apart against New Orleans in Week 7. They’ve been a tough opponent for the Pats in recent times, but with Tom Brady back at the helm, New England is in good shape. However, with Pittsburgh putting up a great Week 7 performance against Minnesota, they probably wouldn’t have too much trouble transferring strategies from one perennial Pro Bowl quarterback to another.

What Might Change Next Week:

  • Dallas visits Philadelphia Sunday night with the division on the line.
  • Packers at Buccaneers, Cardinals at Bears, and Redskins at Falcons. The reeling Giants need to beat San Diego to stay in the hunt.
  • Speaking of the Cardinals, if they get knocked off by the bears, San Francisco hosts the Titans, and could easily retake the division.
  • Pittsburgh at Denver and Baltimore at Cincinnati means the AFC North standings after next week are anyone’s guess.

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Discussion

2 comments for “If the Playoffs Started Today – NFL Week 8”

  1. If the Playoffs Started Today – NFL Week 8: And then there were two. With Denver dropping to Baltimore, the Col.. http://bit.ly/ZOkYw

    Posted by Sports of Boston | November 3, 2009, 7:13 am
  2. If the Playoffs Started Today NFL Week 8 | Sports of Boston http://bit.ly/1ls0nK

    Posted by SteelersFeed | November 4, 2009, 4:32 am

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