Re: AFC Playoff Predictions
posted at 12/4/2012 8:17 PM EST
The Baltimore Ravens will stagger into the #4 slot at 11-5 or maybe 10-6, because Pitt and Cincinnati are no better.
Houston is slated to lose to the Patriots next Monday by 7.7 points. Then Houston plays two bunny games and Indy in Indy. Assuming that they beat Indy, Houston will grab the #1 seed at 14-2. Ka-ching, and a big wet kiss to the scab refs.
New England will run the table, in the process crushing San Francisco like nobody would expect, by 12.8 points. They will grab the #2 AFC seed at 13-3.
Denver will win every game but Baltimore and that game is a tossup. Denver will finish at 12-4 or 13-3. I'm mildly surprised that Peyton Manning's neck hasn't fallen off yet, but that was always a possibility. New England already beat Denver so that NE owns the tiebreaker.
Cincinnati has the best ability of the remainders, followed by Buffalo and Pitt. Buffalo won't catch up. Pitt has a cakewalk so they're my wild guess as a #5 seed with a good conference record. Indy will probably squeak a #6 at 10-6 or, if New England is lucky, 11-5.
Indy is no good and also Indy will fall apart in a playoff game. Pitt might possibly beat Baltimore but don't count on it.
Denver at New England in the divisional round, or worse, Baltimore at New England, is a joke. Denver at Houston would be a relatively tough game with a 4.2 point spread.
New England at Houston for the championship is statistically a tossup. New England gets a slight advantage because they always play a team better the second time.