Divisional Week always delivers some of the best football all year. I can’t say this weekend was much different. We didn’t have the narrative chaos from last weekend but the games, as a whole, were more competitive and interesting. We started with Texans/Ravens, which was probably the least competitive game of the weekend. The Texans kept it close for one half but the Ravens are just such a strong team and they opened it up in the second half. Texans fans have a lot to celebrate and should be proud of this season but don’t allow yourselves to get cocky for the future. It wasn’t that long ago they were pretty much in this same position with DeShaun Watson. Bright future, franchise QB, nothing but hope. One year can change everything, but feeling good? Yeah, that’s fine. Hell of a season, Houston.

SF/GB delivered the goods once more. To be honest the entire game felt to me like a Green Bay upset until the last moments. San Francisco could not get anything going and the Packers were largely keeping pace with them, despite making more mistakes. Purdy could not consistently get the ball to his guys in the rain with his gloves on. Back and forth the game went and then Jordan Love had his chance at a legacy drive. So that means on first down he scrambled off to his right, hurled the ball across his body into double coverage, and was easily picked off. If you didn’t immediately have flashbacks to Brett Favre’s throw against the Saints, you haven’t watched football very long. So instead of an upset, Green Bay goes home thanks to San Francisco for the 5th time since 2012. It must be infuriating to be a Packers fan when the subject of SF comes up.

Lions/Bucs was a solid game too! The first half was tight and low scoring with both teams grabbing a field goal and the Lions scoring a solid touchdown. Then Baker unleashed the dragon right before half and the Bucs went into the locker room tied up. Again, this looked like it could be an upset. The Bucs were an inconsistent team at best this year with waning talent, but they held their own. The scoring ramped up in the second half but the Lions appeared to pull away by 14 points. Suddenly the Bucs got a TD and got the ball back with a minute to go. We had a game. That’s when Baker finally got too greedy and got picked off to end an outstanding match. The Detroit Lions are playing in the NFC Championship game. Can you believe it?

The true chaos was saved for last.

The Wink divorce was finalized last week. That was weird.

We saved the stupidest and most competitive game for the end. Bills/Chiefs is an incredible rivalry that has produced some of the most enjoyable games of the past few years, from 13 seconds to the Toney offsides game and now Wide Right 2: Wider Right. What a rough way to lose. This game had it all. Numerous lead changes. Stupid turnovers. The Bills tried to run a fake punt with Damar Hamlin when the Chiefs only had 10 men on the field and the fake went incredibly poorly, like the very gods trying to deny Damar his Disney storybook moment. About a minute later the Chiefs gave the ball right back when they got struck by the most controversial rule in football: the fumble endzone touchback rule. That entire sequence was probably the dumbest 2 minutes of football these playoffs so far. But the Bills saved their masterpiece for last, staying alive on a must-have-it drive to reach field goal range. Tyler Bass lines up for the kick. Jim Nantz brings up an anecdote from Sean McDermott about how he believes that Tyler has them when it matters. Bass hits the kick hard and the wind just rips the ball into the void far to the right of the goalposts. I think every football fan watching the game probably involuntarily said the same thing. Wide Right. Unbelievable. Buffalo is cursed. 


Dan Campbell seems like the good version of the analytics nerd Brandon Staley was trying to be. He goes for it. He always goes for it. I don’t know if Dan Campbell even knows basic math but he does know that touchdowns are more points than field goals and that punts are for wimpy boys.
-I had no idea Dalvin Cook had ended up on the Ravens until he suddenly had a big run against Houston. Dalvin just looks good in purple.
-An anecdote from Matt LaFleur about his kicker: “Everytime he goes out there, I just pray”. Seems like a bad vibe to have about your kicker. Anderson shanked a kick before halftime. Of course, this didn’t matter too much as San Fran would doink a kick of their own. Offsetting shanks!

The only away team to win this weekend was the Chiefs, who I would argue was the least surprising possible away team to win. The Chiefs managed to catch passes against the Bills and the injuries in Buffalo seemed like they finally caught up to them. The Chiefs are now, somehow, the Chaos team. Right with them is the Lions, who have a chance to upset the top-seed 49ers. The Chiefs probably have the harder ask as the Ravens are the only team this weekend to come out and win convincingly. The 49ers looked a lot more vulnerable than I expected even taking into account the weather. I desperately want the Lions to win because if they don’t, we are guaranteed a boring playoff rematch. The 49ers have lost Super Bowls to both AFC competitors in the past 12 years.


The 49ers I would argue have the most to lose this weekend. The Chiefs are an underdog to Baltimore and losing would be understandable. The Lions have reached the House Money stage and are the other underdog. The Ravens losing at home would be rough and contribute more nonsense discourse to the Lamar haters, but losing to Patrick Mahomes and a Chiefs team with grit and playoff experience isn’t a huge embarrassment. The 49ers? Claiming the #1 seed and having multiple players on your offense get MVP chatter during the year only to get bounced by an upstart young team with such a woeful playoffs history, at home, would be pretty rough.


I guess probably the Bills. Favored at home against the weakest Chiefs team we’ve seen in years and they still couldn’t do it. Feels like how Peyton could never get past the Patriots for the early 2000’s.


-The Texans were simply outmatched. Sometimes you hit a wall.



Teams I want to see win the super bowl: Lions, Ravens (specifically for Lamar)
Teams I would prefer went away instead: 49ers, Chiefs

Here we are. The Detroit Lions are in the NFCCG. It has been 66 years since the Lions won a road playoff game, and guess which team they beat? I don’t know if this Lions team has quite enough grit and grind to pull off the upset but I know anything is possible. The Lions defense held up alright against the Bucs but Shanahan is a tougher challenge. Can Hutchinson get to Purdy and throw him off? Goff looks like butt under pressure so keeping him safe will probably give the Lions the best real shot here. I want to believe, but hard to pick against the 49ers.
If the Lions win, I will draw Dan Campbell as Godzilla destroying Silicon Valley
If the 49ers win, I will draw Brock Purdy as a trendy Tech CEO

I see no reason to think the Ravens won’t keep it up.
If the Chiefs win, I will draw Mahomes, The Walrus, and Kelce as Taylor Swift’s backup dancers
If the Ravens win, I will draw Lamar Jackson sweeping Taylor off her feet