2023 NFL Playoffs: Rankings of all 14 postseason teams, with Chiefs, Bills leading Super Bowl contenders

2023 NFL Playoffs: Rankings of all 14 postseason teams, with Chiefs, Bills leading Super Bowl contenders

The 2022 NFL game photo is officially set. After the Lions upset the Packers in dramatic fashion Sunday night, knocking Green Bay out of postseason contention and elevating the Seahawks to the final wild card spot, the Super Wild Card Weekend schedule is complete. Now, the real gaming can begin. The postseason is a new slate for 14 contenders, and only time will tell which ones are ready to run for Lombardy. Meanwhile, here’s how to rank them:

Terek Hill

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Mike McDaniel deserves credit for guiding Miami to this point, and Tua Tagovailoa quarterback opened them up early this year. And Tyreek Hill is always responsible for changing the game with his speed. But Tagovailoa is completely unknown from a medical point of view recovering from his recent concussion, and even if his health isn’t in danger, neither he nor No. 2 Teddy Bridgewater possess the consistent depth-zone accuracy to play penalties, which might be required thanks to their poor pass defense.

13- Seahawks (9-8)

DK Metcalfe, Tyler Lockett

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Earned a ticket to the postseason via the Lions’ championships, Seattle has also gotten the benefit of experience on the sidelines, as Pete Carroll has now led 10 different playoff runs in 13 years. Rookie Kenneth Walker III delivers some pop like an old-school bell cow. The once porous defense has been toughened up lately. Unfortunately, things have gone the wrong way through the air, rookie Geno Smith has featured goals on DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett but now has 10 turnovers in his last eight games.

Trevor Lawrence

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Doug Pederson probably deserves Coach of the Year consideration for the way he helped restore Trevor Lawrence as a rising star under center, and his buddies played a kind of dark football during their five-game winning streak through the end of the year; Dating from philadelphia, pederson teams have always had a fight. But they are a young group whose defensive lapses are likely to have been masked a bit by facing the Jets, Texans and Titans down the stretch.

Saquon Barclay and Daniel Jones

GT

Winning meaningful games in 2023 usually means winning consistently through the air, and that’s not necessarily something they’ve been able to do with a temporary receiver team for Daniel Jones, who has otherwise enjoyed quiet but remarkable growth under Brian Dabol. Thus, their cap appears to be very low unlike explosive squads. But as an early winger, she was made to make noise thanks to the clever physique Daboll rubbed on Saquon Barkley and Co.

Justin Herbert

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Welcome to the three-team fun zone, talented teams that simply can’t be trusted. Los Angeles has all the building blocks for a title contender, from laser-armed Justin Herbert to hyper-fleshed Austin Eckler to Joey Bosa’s devastating QB. However, coach Brandon Staley, whose “D” has split against inferior opponents, often seems to get in the way of key decisions. No matter how many cheesy names they have on both sides of the ball, their games find a way to get down to the wire.

Duck Prescott

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Speaking of sloppy names, Dallas is king when it comes to a glossy-on-paper product that fails to show up when it matters. When they’re firing on all cylinders, with CeeDee Lamb throwing off catches and terrorizing Micah Parsons QBs off the rim, they’re a powerhouse. But their ground game has been flat lately, and most worryingly, for all the high-level touchdowns Dak Prescott can make under center, the QB has been especially precarious since returning from injury, leading the NFL with 15 picks in 12 games. Just. Moreover, seven years later, he’s still looking for a decisive win in a big match.

Justin Jefferson

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Kevin O’Connell has steered this program in the right direction, somehow enabling Kirk Cousins ​​to produce some of the most gritty and resilient runs of his career in an otherwise ineffective year by QB standards, somehow winning 13 of 17 games with a sieve. pass defense. The culture is on the rise, and Justin Jefferson’s smooth play style on a wide scale makes it even more promising. The problem is that the few times the going gets hard, well, it gets ugly; It seemed like Cousins, Dalvin Cook, and the whole operation would fail if Jefferson wasn’t feeding on the ground. Then there is the infamous point spread. Despite all of these gains, we haven’t seen Minnesota take care of business in such a clean and easy way.

Tom Brady

GT

Everything says Tampa Bay has to be one-on-one in the playoffs. Everything but the guy is below center. Todd Bowles’ first pitch as Bruce Arians’ successor was sloppy, slow and uninspired, with conservative leanings mixed poorly with an injury-plagued lineup. But Tom Brady is still rocking it at the age of 45, and he’s still keeping some of his best for a tough time. The Bulls’ “D” is generally fast and physical enough to stay in any game, so if Brady’s setup doesn’t let him dry out, allowing him time to land blows to Mike Evans down the sideline, he can easily play a spoiler.

Lamar Jackson

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Where is Lamar Jackson now? physically? mentally? The star QB hasn’t taken a practice field, let alone started a game, in a month. And his availability, combined with his athletic limitations (or lack thereof) due to a knee injury, can determine whether they can make it to the end zone on the big stage. Baltimore’s offense was already one-dimensional, as Jackson and JK Dobbins were accused of running the show to the ground. Fortunately, John Harbaugh has been battle-tested on the sidelines, and his “D” average, headlined by Roquan Smith, is more than the takeaway per game.

Jalen Hurts

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Not much different from their title-winning predecessors five years ago, they don’t exactly strump their feet with their heads held high in the championship, although at one point they seem like the obvious total package. The X-factor may be defenseman Jonathan Gannon, who leads the NFL in sacks but was apt to die in a thousand papers. But the bye should help QB Jalen Hurts return to form as a powerful dual-threat spur, and his wide duo of AJ Brown and DeVonta Smith fought reliably. Their trenches were also traditionally strong, which helped them win very different types of games.

Joe Burrow

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Although they had an MVP candidate under center in Joe Burrow, they weren’t a long-term juggernaut, going over 30 points just once in their last six games. However, what they’ve been is a dependable clutch, and Burrow’s extremely accurate throws are the biggest reason. Jamar Chase’s out-wide electricity sure helps, as does the pushy “D”. You worry a little bit about Burrow protection, and their health in general, but as long as Burrow’s around, it’s hard to calculate.

Kyle Shanahan

GT

There was a time when injuries could undermine Kyle Shanahan’s highly respected scoring system, as 2018 and 2020 have proven. That time now seems to be in the past, as Shanahan’s senior offense thrives with his third starting QB of the year, with rookie Brock Purdy somehow bringing in more. More poise and passing touch than Jimmy Garoppolo and Tre Lance before him. The weapons are elite, with Christian McCaffrey and Debo Samuel as utility men and George Kittle in the centre, and the DeMeco Ryans defense is poor, with Nick Bosa off the edge and ball magnet in the next echelons. It’s just so well rounded. The only major question mark is whether Purdy, 23, will look any different under the brighter lights.

Josh Allen and Stephon Diggs

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If fate were with any rival, it might be him. Buffalo, galvanized by recovery from Damar Hamlin, was already the best-equipped to rival the Chiefs, their playoff opponent, thanks mostly to fireworks along with Josh Allen and Stefon Diggs. Allen, of course, is such a gunslinger that he tends to give up the ball, but there are plenty of other things working for the Bills to offset occasional errors: Their game on the ground is understated with rookie James Cook, and the defense is littered with experienced playmakers even from Don von Miller, and trainer Sean McDermott is a unified leader like no one else.

1 – Presidents (3-14)

Patrick Mahomes

GT

They have advanced to the AFC Championship Game in each of the four seasons that Andy Reed has had Patrick Mahomes as the starting QB, and the two times they have not been to the Super Bowl, they have gone to overtime for a conference title. Simply put, there is no safer bet to make when it matters most. History isn’t the only thing on their side either. Despite a weak defense, Reid unlocks Kadarius Toney in time, Travis Kelce remains an undetectable safety valve, and Mahomes – always a clutch trick-play artist – still makes MVP plays look casual. Like the Patriots of old, when the Tom Brady-Bill Belichick duo single-handedly demanded confidence, they are today the NFL’s most enduring standards.


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