What to look out for in NFL playoff games on Saturday

The four teams leading Saturday’s NFL doubles game know each other well.

The Las Vegas Raiders and Cincinnati Bengals met in November amid a three-game skid for the Raiders. The New England Patriots and Buffalo Bills, two rivals from AFC East, met twice in the regular season, splitting 1: 1, with each team winning on their opponent’s home field.

Revenge and the last game in this year’s trilogy await you. Here’s a look at the matches that will begin the first week of the NFL playoffs in 2022.

16:30, NBC

The Raiders (10-7) had little time to celebrate their chaotic win over the Chargers last week, which secured Las Vegas to advance to the playoffs as the No. 5 seeded AFC The Raiders will face an attack by Cincinnati Bengals who broke through. for postseason and has No. 4 seed.

Joe Burrow, the future Cincinnati quarterback, was one of the league’s top players in the second half of the regular season, as the Bengals (10-7) began using the game plan with a higher pass rate. Burrow has thrown more than 300 yards in three of his last four games, completing more than 60 percent of his passes in each of those matches. Much of this success was due to Burrow throwing into Ja’Marr Chase’s wide receiver, which was as solid a safety net as any quarterback might wish.

Many questioned the Bengals’ decision to select Chase in the overall 5th draft spot in 2021 instead of Penei Sewell’s offensive solution (prospect of the best offensive line), and Chase did little to quell this skepticism due to a stunning pre-season season marked by crashing balls. Since then, however, Chase has almost run away with the Offensive Rookie of the Year award, proving that these exaggerated reactions at the beginning of the season were just that. He led the Bengals in receptions (81), yards (1,455) and touchdowns (13) in the regular season and caught 11 passes over 200 yards in the Cincinnati win over the Chiefs, which knocked Kansas City out of first place in the AFC.

Although the combination of Burrow, Chase and receivers Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd has been a difficult challenge for enemy defenses in recent weeks, the Raiders’ defense has largely suppressed the incoming Cincinnati attack when the teams met in Week 11, a match the Bengals won. Burrow made a seasonal low of 148 yards and had only one touchdown in a game that was much tighter than the final score of 32-13 indicated.

Las Vegas’ defensive strength is at the forefront, where Maxx Crosby, a Raiders Pro Bowl edge rusher, thrives on influencing passers-by. Crosby didn’t make it to Burrow in the first team meeting, although Las Vegas fired him three times. Yannick Ngakoue, another disruptive defensive group of Raiders, noticed a strike in the strip-sack during the first bombing of the Bengals in this match. Las Vegas should have no problem putting pressure against the Cincinnati offensive line, which has problems with passing protection (Burrow was the most fired quarterback in the regular season).

The vast majority of players in both teams have never played a playoff game. The Raiders have not entered the post-season since 2016 and last won the playoffs in 2002. If the Bengals win at Paul Brown Stadium, this will be their first playoff victory in more than 30 years.

20:15, CBS

The Bills (11-6) have won four of their last five regular season games, securing third place in the AFC. The Patriots (10-7) finished season 2-3 and finished with the number 6.

They will meet on Saturday at Highmark Stadium, where the temperature is expected to be in single digits with a cold wind around minus 10 to 15 from the excavation.

That means the game might look similar to when the teams met in early December, when rookie Patriots Mac Jones tried just three passes in a tumultuous and challenging match in New York. New England won 14:10 with over 200 yards on the ground.

The Patriots could be without starting corner defender Jalen Mills, who was added to the reserve list / Covid-19 on Tuesday, which would be problematic for a secondary player who already lacks depth in the corner position.

New England traded defensive Pro Bowl defender Stephen Gilmore for the Carolina Panthers during a training camp. Patriots corner defender Jonathan Jones had shoulder surgery at the end of the season in October. Mills and cornerback JC Jackson were the centerpiece of the thin secondary Patriots.

The Patriots still allowed only 17.8 points per game, the second lowest in the league (Buffalo allowed 17.0). The Bills finished their regular season with one of the NFL’s best defense units, leading the league in several defense categories, including the fewest yards allowed per game and the fewest yards allowed to pass.

In the second team meeting, the Bills forced one of Jones’ worst performances of the year in a double-digit win. Jones completed 14 of the 32 passes and dropped two interceptions.

Buffalo’s offensive, led by quarterback Josh Allen, has been inconsistent this season, but the threat of a link between Allen and wide receiver Stefon Diggs remains. In winning Gillette Stadium, Diggs had six catches for 85 yards and a touchdown.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *