There are a lot of bad things about heading into a new year. You have to lose the weight you gained from holidays, because it turns out taking in as many calories in one week as a third world country takes in during a month isn’t a good idea. You have to remember to write 2015 instead of 2014 whenever you date things, and who has time for that? You have to make a New Year’s resolution to stop having sex with sheep (I swear I’m gonna stick by it this time).
But don’t think about the depressing stuff! Because guess what! The new year means the NFL playoffs are starting! And yep, you know what that means. My annual playoff prediction blog post, wherein I make an ass of myself by missing every single one of my playoff predictions and proving why I’ll never get a job as a sportswriter ever! So much fun! Let’s get down to it!
Wild Card Round
Cardinals at Panthers
The Panthers are the playoff team from the NFC South, who only got a playoff team because someone had to go to the playoffs from that division. At 7-8-1, the Panthers are essentially the fat, smelly kid down the street who your mom made you hang out with because he had no friends and she felt bad for them. But unbelievably, because Earth makes no sense, the Panthers may actually win this game. Why? They’re going against the Cardinals, who are on their third string quarterback, someone named Ryan Lindley. If you don’t know who that is, don’t feel bad. Even Ryan Lindley doesn’t know who Ryan Lindley is.
Panthers win this by virtue of playing the one team in the playoffs who are shittier than them.
Ravens at Steelers
Ahh, you gotta love a plucky underdog story. The Ravens are America’s darling with the classy way they handled the Ray Rice situation, immediately letting Rice ago after they saw video of Ray Rice punching his then fiance in an elevator. Suuuure, they could have released him after the initial video came out, where he was dragging her unconscious body out of an elevator, but I mean, maybe she was narcoleptic and Rice had just been helping her find a more comfortable place to sleep. The Ravens were nice enough to reserve judgment until they actually saw him punch her and for that, we all salute them.
Or maybe they’re an idiotic team who were super shady in their dealing with the incident and now karma is going to get back at them in the form of a red hot Steelers passing offense dissecting their awful secondary for the entire country to see. Whichever narrative you prefer. I know which one I do.
Bengals at Andrew Luck
At some point Andy Dalton has got to win a playoff game, right? I mean, the guy has been in the playoffs every single year of his 4 year career and he still has yet to get a playoff win. That is as statistically improbable as going on 4 dates with Paris Hilton and not even getting your wiener touched. Dalton needs to learn to make a move and close the deal, and luckily he gets a great chance again Andrew Luck’s Colts, a team that is woefully awful at football with the exception of their once in a generation talent at the quarterback position. Turns out, the quarterback position is pretty important though, which means Andrew Luck has a good chance of winning this game, especially against a Bengals team that has as many playoff wins in the past three years as I do.
So will Andrew Luck cockblock Andy Dalton from advancing in the playoffs, again, or will Dalton and the Bengals finally get lucky? Meh. I’ll throw Cincinnati a bone.
Andrew Luck: 24
Lions at Cowboys
If you’re reading this from a fallout shelter because the Lions making the playoffs at 11-5 made you worried that nuclear winter was in its way, no one can blame you. Hell, I’m writing this from a fallout shelter. Unfortunately for the Lions, they’re probably going to end up being sent home after this game for a couple reasons. 1) They’re the Detroit Lions, and 2) The Cowboys are actually pretty decent this year. Also, I trust Matthew Stafford winning a playoff game as much as I would trust my daughter on a date with Jaemis Winston. On the bright side for Lions fans, they live in one of the most vibrant, bustling cities in the country so they always have that to fall back on.
Bengals at Patriots
So the Bengals get to play against Andrew Luck in the first round, and then they get to play against Tom Brady in the second round. That’s like getting Ebola and then after you recover you find out the Ebola was sleeping with your wife so now you need to get a divorce. Bengals won’t be able to muster the strength to deal with that, especially with a healthy Gronk about to go Gronking* all over the place.
*For the non initiated, Gronking involves doing the following things:
-Catching lots of footballs
-Spiking lots of footballs after catching them
-Smiling a lot and not knowing why you’re smiling
-Headbutting random objects, often to the point where they explode
Panthers at Seahawks
On the list of most evil things ever, the Seahawks are ranked in between “Hitler” and “the talent scout who discovered Justin Bieber.” I know you’re probably crying out, “Wait, Kyle, you’re supposed to be objective in this article!” Well, I am. The Seahawks are objectively evil and if this game doesn’t end with every member of the organization, even the ball boys, spontaneously combusting, then my year is already ruined.
Chances are Seahawks will win because I’m never allowed to be happy and there is no such thing as karma or justice.
Cowboys at Packers
If you were disappointed that the Cowboys moved on in the playoffs, don’t worry. They’re about to get into some of those crazy Cowboy hijinks that we all know and love! They get to face Aaron Rodgers and his Packers in Green Bay, a city so cold and bleak looking that I’m pretty sure they use it as a filming location for Winterfell in Game of Thrones. Rodgers will continue to shine as the best quarterback in the league and Tony Romo will continue to shine as the best quarterback at throwing away playoff games in the league. The one thing going for the Cowboys is that their running game matches up well against Green Bay’s run defense. So logically, the Cowboys have a chance. But if the world actually worked by logic, I would be married to Emma Watson and Jennifer Lawrence because I’m so hot and successful so logic is nothing to go by here.
Steelers at Peyton Manning
Upset alert! And by that I don’t mean Eli Manning is going to be upset when he finally realizes his brother is in the playoffs and he isn’t. Nope, I mean the Steelers are going to go into Denver and beat Peyton Manning on his own turf. Let’s face it, Peyton hasn’t been himself the second half of the season. Whether he’s exhausted from starring in every other commercial on television or his bionic neck is in need of a recharge, Peyton’s throws have looked very “meh” lately. And as I said before, the Steelers have been hot lately and I could see them stealing this one from Peyton.
Though I hesitate to call the Steelers hot because I fear Ben Roethlisberger will take that the wrong way and attempt to have alleged non-consensual sex with me.
Peyton Manning: 24
Packers at Seahawks
Ugh. Another NFC Championship game with the Seahawks. That means I’m going to have to watch this game in a room full of pillows and other soft objects to avoid hurting/murdering myself or someone else. Luckily for the health and welfare of myself and everyone in a 2 mile radius around me, I’m optimistic about the outcome of this game. Sure, Aaron Rodgers went up to Seattle in September and lost but as of last September we also didn’t realize Bill Cosby was a serial rapist. So, a lot has changed over the past few months. Aaron Rodgers and the Packers are much more finely tuned on offense and if anyone has a chance of going up to that wonderfully gray, dreary, and rain soaked Seattle and winning, it’s them.
Steelers at Patriots
The Steelers are going up to New England for the AFC Championship. For this prediction, I’m going to cite something Bill Simmons of Grantland said. He actually gets paid to write about sports, so naturally I’m just going to rip off his stats and use them for my own prediction. Simmons, a Patriots fan (which means he’s probably also a satanist who laughs at orphans), wrote about how the Steelers’ biggest flaw is that they are bad at defending the deep ball and that the Patriots are weak at passing deep, thus rendering Steelers’ biggest weakness unexploitable (no, unexpoitable is not a word, but I’m working on a deadline here so I’m taking liberties with the English language). Using that nugget of information, one could easily see the Steelers winning this game. And I believe they will.
Thank you Bill Simmons for making me look smart, even if you forced me to make up the word unexploitable which kinda undermines that.
Packers vs. Steelers
For my Super Bowl position, I see a rematch of the 2010 Super Bowl where Aaron Rodgers nestled his ballsack on the Steelers collective faces for a 31-25 victory. Since Aaron Rodgers is still the quarterback for the Packers, I’m sensing a similar end result. Unfortunately, Bill Simmons doesn’t have any stats related to a Steelers vs. Packers matchup that I can use so I guess I’m on my own for insightful analysis. Uhh. The Packers are slightly better at football than the Steelers, so therefore I think the Packers will win. There! How’s that for a stat. Here’s a picture of a koala bear, to go along with that stat.
Enjoy the football, ladies and gents! Try not to be amazed when you see how wrong this all is by the end of the postseason!