The second round of the 2018 NFL Playoffs is complete, with the New England Patriots, Jacksonville Jaguars, Philadelphia Eagles, and Minnesota Vikings all moving on. Here is the schedule for next week’s divisional round games:
Sunday, Jan. 21
(3) Jacksonville Jaguars vs. (1) New England Patriots, 3:05 p.m. ET, CBS
(2) Minnesota Vikings vs. (1) Philadelphia Eagles, 6:40 p.m. ET, FOX
Quick Look at the Playoff Games
- Credit to the Jaguars, who for the second time this season absolutely brought it to the Steelers in a 45-42 shootout. It was a well-called game for Jacksonville, and when you look at all of Pittsburgh’s points, they came out of desperation — two fourth down bombs for touchdowns, a unique lateral by Roethlisberger for a touchdown, etc. The Patriots rolled through the Titans after a little first quarter scare.
- The most exciting games of the weekend ended up being from the NFC, starting with the Atlanta Falcons falling to Nick Foles and the Philadelphia Eagles. I thought Matt Ryan was due to lead another heroic comeback for the Falcons, but the team’s playcalling once it got in the goal-to-go situation was a little off, especially the fourth down play call to cut the field in half and limit your options.
- The Vikings steamrolled the Saints for nearly three quarters, but the Saints made stormed back to take a late lead. The end of the game was one of the most insane playoff sequences I’ve ever seen, and somehow, someway, Minnesota is still alive with hopes to return home for a Super Bowl.
- In the AFC Championship, we didn’t see the Jaguars and Patriots square off this year. Just as easily as we saw Jacksonville score 45 points this week, they can score just 10 points like they did a week ago. It’s hard to see them controlling the flow of a game in New England, but they have some momentum and Bortles playing at his best.
- In the NFC Championship, we have a banner quarterback matchup of Foles vs. Case Keenum. In fairness to Keenum, he’s had an outstanding season, while Philadelphia as a team proved they can stay competitive despite their quarterback situation. This will also be the first time these teams have faced off this season.