With the NFL season starting today, it is time to look at what will happen across the league. Here is a breakdown for each week of the 2021 campaign with full regular season, playoff, and Super Bowl predictions. Each record was determined going week by week and picking the winner of every matchup, solely on instinctual reactions.
The analysis opens with standings predictions in a list format, followed by a review of the division. Then, a “quick-hitter” with game-by-game playoff picks (winners in bold). Finally, analysis on the best game for every week of the season.
Overview: The quarterback situations in Chicago, Minnesota and Detroit are troubling. The entire Detroit Lions roster is concerning, and the Bears and Vikings are not far behind. The Packers are clearly the second best team in the NFC, and the best team in the north by far. If any team wants to challenge the Packers, significant improvements will have to be made.
Overview: Outside of the Bucs, it is impossible to decipher what is going to happen in this division. With a ridiculous slate of weapons, you can’t bet against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay team that will be returning every single starter from their 2020-21 championship team. With unanswered questions in New Orleans and Carolina, Atlanta could very well be the second best team in the division in 2021.
Overview: It is Jalen Hurts time and the NFC East is ready for it. Washington has an elite defensive unit, and the Cowboys have one of the best offenses in the NFL. New York and Philadelphia will struggle to keep up with the dynamic teams that are projected at 11-6 a piece.
Overview: Now this is a stacked division.
Every single team has incredible talent on both sides of the ball. Because the NFC West simply beats up on each other week by week, they weaken each other and weaken the Super Bowl chances of any team in the West. Still, this is the best division in football, no question about it. The division winner could come down to inches, seconds or one singular play.
Overview: Joe Burrow and the Bengals are unproven. The other three teams are extremely talented and very well coached. Ultimately, the Browns are clearly the most stacked roster in the AFC North, and they will win the division. However, Baltimore and Pittsburgh will have a few things to say along the way and sneak into the playoff picture behind a surging Gus Edwards and a resurgent Ben Roethlisberger.
Overview: This division is the Titans and the Colts. Because of the uncertainty behind Carson Wentz’s health, the Titans should handle the AFC South easily. Houston is a mess and Jacksonville is not ready to support Trevor Lawrence to a playoff appearance yet.
Overview: The Bills are going to dominate, the Jets are not there yet, the Patriots will be much better this year, and the Dolphins will still show flashes of brilliance with flashes of disaster. Sound accurate? Good talk.
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1: Tampa Bay
2: Green Bay
3: Los Angeles
6: San Francisco
1: Kansas City
6: Los Angeles
7: New England
Wild Card Round Predictions
Cowboys at Packers
49ers at Rams
Seahawks at WFT
Patriots at Browns
Chargers at Bills
Ravens at Titans
Divisional Round Predictions
Seahawks at Packers
49ers at Bucs
Bills at Browns
Titans at Chiefs
Championship Round Predictions
Packers at Bucs
Bills at Chiefs
Super Bowl Prediction
Super Bowl LVI: Chiefs vs. Bucs
Champion: Kansas City Chiefs
Game of the Week Predictions
Week 1: Cleveland Browns at Kansas City Chiefs
This is the likely AFC Championship game, so seeing this dynamic matchup week one is an absolute treat that needs to be cherished.
Week 2: New England Patriots at New York Jets
Week 3: Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco has had Green Bay’s number recently, outside of the injury inspired beating the 49ers took last year. Matt LaFleur vs. Kyle Shanahan is must-watch TV.
Week 4: Tampa Bay Buccaneers at New England Patriots
Week 5: Buffalo Bills at Kansas City Chiefs
The two best quarterbacks in the AFC meet in week five to provide what could be one of the highest scoring games the NFL has to provide this season.
Week 6: Seattle Seahawks at Pittsburgh Steelers
Two teams that are always in the thick of the playoff race meet in week six. This should be a low-scoring, smash mouth football affair between two veteran coaches and quarterbacks.
Week 7: Indianapolis Colts at San Francisco 49ers
Assuming Carson Wentz is healthy and in full swing, this will be a marquee matchup between two teams very adept at running the football. Jonathan Taylor and company versus Raheem Mostert and the dynamic 49ers room, that will not disappoint.
Week 8: Pittsburgh Steelers at Cleveland Browns
Division football, halfway through the season. Both teams working to find their groove will meet in Cleveland to beat up on each other in a game that will already have playoff implications in Week 8.
Week 9: Green Bay Packers at Kansas City Chiefs
Week 10: Los Angeles Rams at San Francisco 49ers
NFC West division football is always good football. West coast, motion based offenses square off in another playoff-esque game halfway through the year.
Week 11: Arizona Cardinals at Seattle Seahawks
Week 12: Las Vegas Raiders at Dallas Cowboys
Thanksgiving football in Dallas? There is nothing better than that.
Week 13: Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers
The Ravens and Steelers will both be looking up at the Browns and jockeying for position in the AFC playoff picture. This game could make or break the season for both Lamar Jackson and Mike Tomlin’s Pittsburgh squad.
Week 14: Buffalo Bills at Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Josh Allen just might be one of the few people who can knock off the Bucs this season. Projected at 15-2, Tom Brady and the Bucs will be hard to defeat, but a rolling Bills squad in Week 14 might just be able to do it.
Week 15: Minnesota Vikings at Chicago Bears
Cold weather, NFC North football at Soldier Field in December? Sign me up.
Week 16: Cleveland Browns at Green Bay Packers
On Christmas Day, this will be the game to watch. Mark your calendar, clear your family schedule and prepare for a potential game of the year.
Week 17: Arizona Cardinals at Dallas Cowboys
Both of these teams should be looking to sneak into the NFC playoff picture. Two offensive based teams will shoot it out in Dallas for a Wild Card spot in Week 17.
Week 18: Pittsburgh Steelers at Baltimore Ravens
Divisional football in the new Week 18 with a potential playoff spot on the line? Does not get much better than this.
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