14 Teams, 1 Goal

 The Road to Super Bowl LVI

Championship Round:

Sunday, Jan 30th: 

Bengals vs Chiefs:

The Bengals tied an AFC title game record by coming back from 18 points down to shock the Chiefs in overtime. The Bengals got 250 yards and two touchdowns from Joe Burrow, but the most important production came from kicker Evan McPherson, who hit four field goals in the game, including the game-winner from 31 yards.

Rams vs 49ers:

The Rams trailed by 10 points in the fourth quarter and looked to be all but done, but then their offense came alive in a miraculous comeback where Los Angeles outscoring the 49ers 13-0 over the final 13 minutes and 30 seconds of the game. Cooper Kupp caught his second TD pass of the day in the fourth quarter and Matt Gay tacked on two field goals for the Rams, who beat the 49ers for the first time since 2018.

Divisional Round:

Sunday, Jan 23rd: 

Bills vs Chiefs:

What a heartbreaking loss for the Bills.  Both teams scored 3 touchdowns in the last 2 minutes of regulation.  After taking the lead with 13 seconds left in regulation, the Bills defense only needed to keep the Chiefs out of field goal range.  Mahomes led the Chiefs down the field where they tied the game with a field goal to send it into overtime as time expired.  Two amazing young QBs battled hard tonight but the Chiefs didn’t end up in their 4th straight AFC championship game for no reason.  The Chiefs will host the Bengals in the AFC title game next weekend.

Rams vs Bucs:

The Rams defensive front dominated the game putting the Bucs backs against the wall early.  The heart-thumping, blood-racing 2nd half was full of excitement with the Bucs coming back to tie the game with under a minute to play but Matthew Stafford was able to hit Cooper Kupp deep to run the clock down to 4 seconds.  Kicker Matt Gay hit a 30 yard field goal as time expired.  This Divisional weekend has been wild.  All three games have come down to the visiting lower seed team upsetting the home team with last second field goals.  The Rams advance to face the 49ers in the NFC Championship game.

Saturday, Jan 22nd: 

49ers vs Packers:

The 49ers just beat the Packers 13-10 in Lambeau Field without scoring an offensive or defensive touchdown the entire game.  Robbie Gould with ice in his veins drills the game winning field goal as time expired in the Lambeau snow. The 49ers will move on to the NFC Championship game and face the winner of the Bucs/Rams game.

Bengals vs Titans:

Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow was sacked a playoff record 9 times but did enough to keep the game close.  An interception by Titans QB Ryan Tannehill (his 3rd of the game) with 20 seconds left allowed the Bengals to get in field goal range.  McPherson, coming in clutch for the Bengals with the winning 52 yard field goal as time expired to upset the #1 seed Titans.  The Bengals are advancing to the AFC Championship game for the first time since 1988.  They will face off against the winner of the Bills/Chiefs game.


Wildcard Round:

Monday, Jan 17th: 

Rams vs Cardinals:

In front of a raucous crowd inside SoFI Stadium, the Rams toppled the Arizona Cardinals to earn an NFC Wild Card Game win in the NFL’s first-ever playoff game on Monday Night Football.  The stars were out in prime time for Sean McVay’s squad throughout the contest, with Matthew Stafford, Cooper Kupp and Cam Akers leading the way on offense, and Von Miller captaining a smothering effort by L.A’s well-rounded defense.  The Rams will be moving on to the divisional round to take on the defending Super Bowl Champion Buccaneers. 

 Sunday, Jan 16th: 

Chiefs vs Steelers:

The Kansas City Chiefs have punched their ticket to the AFC Divisional Round for a fourth consecutive campaign.
Behind another top-notch performance from Patrick Mahomes and their red-hot offense, the Chiefs cruised to a lopsided wild-card win over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday night.  Mahomes finished the evening with five touchdowns. Travis Kelce became the first player in NFL history to throw a TD, catch a TD and have 100+ rec yards in a single playoff game.

Cowboys vs 49ers:

The Cowboys couldn’t overcome penalties & sacks… season is over in loss to 49ers in Wild Card round.  The Cowboys had a final chance with 32 seconds remaining and were at the San Francisco 41 with 14 seconds to go when Prescott took off up the middle intending to slide and spike the ball for a final play but ran out of time before they could get one final play off.  The 49ers will advance to the divisional round and travel to Green Bay to face Aaron Rodgers and the #1 Packers.

Buccaneers vs Eagles:
Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat the Eagles into another dimension.  He threw touchdown passes to Rob Gronkowski and Mike Evans and spread the ball to nine different receivers. Brady finished 29-of-37 for 271 yards and two touchdowns. 
The Bucs led 31-0 in the fourth quarter, before the Eagles offense did anything, so the final stats will be skewed since they came in garbage time.  The defending champions will be moving on to the Divisional Round. 


Saturday, Jan 15th: 

Bills vs Patriots:
The Buffalo Bills reasserted their recently established dominion over the New England Patriots. With the stakes raised even further this time in a first-round AFC playoff encounter Saturday night in frigid Orchard Park, N.Y., the Bills left no doubt. Quarterback Josh Allen threw five touchdown passes, two of them to tight end Dawson Knox, and tailback Devin Singletary ran for two touchdowns for the Bills. They scored the game’s first 27 points and never looked back on their way to a 47-17 victory.

Bengals vs Raiders:
The Cincinnati Bengals beat the Las Vegas Raiders for the second time this season.  The Bengals’ 26-19 win over the Raiders at Paul Brown Stadium on Saturday, the franchise’s first playoff victory in 31 years, could prove to be valuable experience when Cincinnati hits the road next week in the Divisional Round.  The No. 4-seeded Bengals’ win most likely means that Cincinnati will travel to face the top-seeded Tennessee Titans next weekend, while the No. 3-seeded Bills could face Kansas City in a rematch of last season’s A.F.C. championship game, which the Chiefs won. But those pairings depend on Kansas City dispatching the Steelers, who, in the event of an upset on Sunday, would get the Titans (and presumably Derrick Henry) in the next round, leaving the Bills and Bengals to scrap it out.


How do the NFL Playoffs work in 2022?

A total of 14 teams… seven from each conference will compete in the playoffs this year. The top seed from each conference, (the Green Bay Packers in the NFC and Tennessee Titans in the AFC) has a bye to the divisional round. The previous format featured 12 teams (6 from each conference) and allowed two teams in each conference to have first-round byes. As a result, there are now two extra games on Wild Card weekend.  The higher seeded team will face lowest remaining seed in the next rounds. 



The Bracket!