Two for Round Two: Eagles-Saints and Chargers-Pats

Ross Houston
January 13, 2019

Let's see who Madden thinks will advance to next week's Conference Championship games.

Andrew Luck was held to 203 yards passing for the Colts (11-7), while Marlon Mack was a non-factor on the ground.

"If there's one team that can beat Kansas City, it is the Indianapolis Colts".

The victor will move on to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday, January 20th. Despite producing back-to-back division titles for the first time in almost four decades, both coach and quarterback knew the results that matter most are those produced in the playoffs. Like on Gurley's 35-yard touchdown, which Gurley described as the "Red Sea" parting so that he could burst through the hole and score. If not for the extraordinary efforts of Ford just a few plays later, that play would have likely led to points as it put the Colts into scoring range. However, Philly hasn't forgotten that Nick Foles didn't play in that game.

McClure is also targeting a player who could go off for big numbers in the divisional round because of a dream matchup. Still the Chiefs at home is going to be tough for the Colts.

Worth focusing on: The tight end production for Indy's Eric Ebron, who had 15 touchdowns this season, and KC's Travis Kelce, second among TEs with 1,336 yards receiving.

New England was 8-0 at Gillette Stadium, the only flawless home record in the league. This will be another close game, in my opinion.

However, the Chargers face a huge challenge to halt a dismal 1-7 straight-up run against the Patriots, a slide which includes a pair of playoff losses. However, the Patriots didn't seem as strong this season as they have in the past, ending with a record of 11-5, which they haven't done since 2008. But Tom Brady is a flawless 7-0 against Chargers' quarterback Philip Rivers. Then they joined the 2015 Chiefs as the only teams in National Football League history to start so abysmally and win a postseason game, romping through the Houston Texans a week ago to earn a shot at the AFC's top seed.

I wasn't involved in either game, though I did lean to the two favorites.

The Saints have known Super Bowl championship success, of course, but truth to tell it is the underdog's role, the Eagles role, that suits New Orleans best.

The Chiefs suffered defeat against the Patriots when the two teams met earlier in the season in a 43-40 thriller. The Cowboys last won a road playoff game in 1993 on their way to a Super Bowl title, but their next playoff victory will be their 36th, tying Pittsburgh for the most in National Football League history. However, the Saints seem nearly unstoppable.

With a Patrick Mahomes and Andrew Luck stealing the spotlight this week, Drew Brees has flown under the radar a bit. They also dominate the run game with both Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram. Due to this seemingly unstoppable team makeup, the Saints are going to take the cake in this one.

The Rams host the Cowboys on Saturday at the Coliseum while the Chargers travel to New England on Sunday to kick off against the Patriots. The first game pits a wild-card victor with a better record against a team that's no stranger to playing in the Super Bowl.

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