Bold Predictions and Picks: NFL Divisional Round Game Plan

Super Bowl LVIII is approaching and the Divisional Round offers a pair of matchups that look great. ESPN Deportes experts make bold predictions for each and also reveal their picks.

Welcome to the Divisional Round, which means there are seven games left in the 2023-24 NFL season, but if history is any guide, they’ll be the coolest games ever.

If it’s about memorable encounters, the Kansas City Chiefs and Buffalo Bills collide for the first time since that spectacular “13 Seconds” game in which the Chiefs defeated the Bills in overtime in the Divisional Round.

This will be Patrick Mahomes’ first game as a visitor in the playoffs and the challenge couldn’t be bigger for the Chiefs quarterback, who has a 38-11 record outside Arrowhead Stadium.

In the second duel that will define the other finalists in the AFC, the surprising Houston Texans, featuring rookie quarterback but who plays as a veteran, C.J. Stroud will try to keep his Cinderella story alive by facing Lamar Jackson’s Baltimore Ravens.

In the NFC, the Green Bay Packers, the team with the lowest average age in playoff history, will try to make another splash at the expense of the San Francisco 49ers, who look better on all fronts, while the Detroit Lions, who are already a contender As for reality, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers will be led by Baker Mayfield who is enjoying the best season of his NFL career.

Excitement is at its peak and ESPN Deportes experts, in addition to making their picks, are also analyzing the most daring scenarios that could happen in the Divisional Round.

ivis aberto/ X: @IvisAburto

chief vs bill

Bold prediction: Chiefs defense will stop Josh Allen twice

The quarterback is like night and day: He can play very well and cause the Bills to win games or he can play very poorly and cause Buffalo to lose.

The same can be said about the Chiefs defense, which was one of the best at pressuring opposing quarterbacks, but one of the worst (17th in the NFL, No. 27) at causing turnovers in the regular season.

Allen’s quality is not in doubt, but there are irregularities in his performance, which may have occurred in the same game as the last game of the regular season in Miami and in which the quarterback had a bad first half, but he recovered against the Bills. Others to lead to victory.

The Chiefs defense has the right personnel to force Allen into rushing decisions, and when that happens, blocks usually come. Allen was the second quarterback with the most interceptions (18) in the regular season.

Sebastian M. Christensen / X: @cebasmcespan

packers vs 49ers

Bold prediction: Christian McCaffrey will have over 200 total yards

The Packers defense was the most pleasant surprise in the Wild Card Round, considering it was opportunistic and played at a much higher level than it showed, however, the running game is still its weakest link.

That’s not good news when you’re about to face the NFL’s best running back and arguably the league’s most physical offense.

I fear Green Bay will be pushed this weekend and McCaffrey will primarily shine on the ground, but will also shine through the air with many screen passes.

McCaffrey will have a historically good day against the Packers.

Paul Viruega: X: @PabloViruega

texans vs ravens

Bold prediction: Texans will blow the whistle and blow out the Ravens

Baltimore is the clear favorite not only to win but to reach the Super Bowl in the AFC, so thinking about a risky prediction means they’ll lose to Houston.

Of course this can happen, because no one wins just by standing on the field. The Texans are a team that can struggle, they are young guys without experience, but sometimes because of that carelessness of playing without pressure, they can be dangerous.

CJ Stroud should throw three touchdown passes and have some of his best games in his rookie year. That’s a lot to ask for a young man who has had a tremendous year and that makes him the favorite to be Offensive Rookie of the Year. The defense is going to need to contain Lamar Jackson and force a lot of turnovers to have a chance to beat a team like Baltimore, which is extremely physical.

It’s unlikely that all of these combinations will happen with the experience of the Ravens and their coach John Harbaugh, but if you’re crazy, Houston could win if all of this, and more, happens.

Carlos Nava / X: @tapanawa

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