With the NFC and AFC Championship games set, let’s take a look at who’s left in the NFL Playoffs.
Four teams remain in the NFL playoffs vying for a spot in the Super Bowl. In the NFC, the Green Bay Packers will take on the Atlanta Falcons in the NFC Championship game. The winner of that game will advance to the Super Bowl to take on the winner of the AFC Championship game.
The Green Bay Packers
The Green Bay Packers are a professional American football team based in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The Packers compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league’s National Football Conference (NFC) North division. It is the third-oldest franchise in the NFL, dating back to 1919, and is the only non-profit, community-owned major league professional sports team in the United States. Home games have been played at Lambeau Field since 1957.
The Packers are the last remaining original NFL franchise to not have fallen under common ownership rules. They are also the only publicly owned franchise in the NFL where there is no stock market for shareholders to trade their shares. A board of directors, elected by Packers shareholders every year, governs organization operations. The club’s current president and CEO is Mark Murphy.
The New Orleans Saints
The New Orleans Saints are a professional American football team based in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Saints currently compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member of the league’s National Football Conference (NFC) South division. The Saints were founded by John W. Mecom Jr., David Dixon, and the city of New Orleans on November 1, 1966. The team played their home games at Tulane Stadium through the 1974 NFL season. The following year, they moved to the new Louisiana Superdome (now Mercedes-Benz Superdome).
The Los Angeles Rams
The Los Angeles Rams are a professional American football team that compete in the National Football League (NFL). The Rams franchise was founded in 1936 as the Cleveland Rams in the short-lived second American Football League before joining the NFL the next year. In 1946, the franchise moved to Los Angeles. The Rams franchise remained in the city until 1994, when they moved to St. Louis. The Rams franchise returned to Los Angeles in 2016.
The Rams advanced to Super Bowl LIII, where they defeated the New England Patriots 13–3, marking their first Super Bowl victory and appearance since 2001 and only their second appearance since their win in Super Bowl XXXVI.
The NFL playoffs are down to the final four teams in the AFC. The New England Patriots, Pittsburgh Steelers, Jacksonville Jaguars, and Kansas City Chiefs are all vying for a spot in the Super Bowl. Let’s take a look at each team’s chances.
The Baltimore Ravens
The Baltimore Ravens are a professional American football team based in Baltimore, Maryland. They are a member of the National Football League (NFL) and play in the American Football Conference (AFC) North division. The Ravens were established in 1996, when Art Modell, who was then the owner of the Cleveland Browns, relocated the franchise to Baltimore after discussion with then-NFL Commissioner Paul Tagliabue.
The Kansas City Chiefs
The Kansas City Chiefs are a professional American football team based in Kansas City, Missouri. The Chiefs compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league’s American Football Conference (AFC) West division. The team was founded in 1960 as the Dallas Texans by businessman Lamar Hunt and was a charter member of the American Football League (AFL). In 1963, the team relocated to Kansas City and assumed their current name. The Chiefs joined the NFL as a result of the AFL–NFL merger in 1970. The team is valued at over $2 billion. Hunt’s son, Clark, serves as chairman and CEO.
The Chiefs have won three AFL championships, in 1962, 1966, and 1969. They became the second AFL team (after the New York Jets) to defeat an NFL team in an AFL–NFL World Championship Game when they defeated the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IV. The team’s victory on January 11, 1970, remains the club’s last championship game victory and appearance to date. In their 52 years of existence, the Chiefs have had 20 head coaches; Dick Vermeil won the most games (102) and hired Gunther Cunningham, who led them to two playoff appearances; Marty Schottenheimer led them to their only AFC Championship Game appearance; Herm Edwards led them to four playoff appearances during his six seasons but never advanced beyond the divisional round; Todd Haley led them back-to-back AFC West titles for 2010 & 2011 but was fired after a 1-4 start in 2012; Romeo Crennel coached them for parts of three seasons before being fired halfway through his fourth; Andy Reid led them back-to-back AFC West titles for 2016 & 2017.
The franchise has qualified for six AFC playoffs berths since 1970—in 1986 as a wild card team, 1991 after winning their first AFC West title since 1971 with an 11–5 record under head coach Marty Schottenheimer, 1993 after winning their second AFC West title with a 13–3 record under Schottenheimer, 1995 with an 8–8 record under Schottenheimer (losing in the first round), 2016 behind rookie quarterback sensation Patrick Mahomes II who threw for 5377 yards with 50 Passing TDs (an NFL Record for most Passing TDs by a rookie), and 2017 when they also went 12–4 behind Mahomes who threw for 5044 yards with 26 Passing TDs along with rushing for 609 yards with 8 more TDs on the ground making him KC’s first ever 4000/1000 yard passer/rusher respectively).
Since 1960 Dallas/Kansas City has been home to 28 Pro Bowlers including 6 Hall Of Famers: Emmitt Thomas CB(1986), Bobby Bell LB(1983), Len Dawson QB(1987), Curley Culp DT(2013), Willie Lanier LB(1986), Jan Stenerud K(1991).
The New England Patriots
The New England Patriots are a professional American football team based in the Greater Boston region. The Patriots compete in the National Football League (NFL) as a member club of the league’s American Football Conference (AFC) East division. The team plays its home games at Gillette Stadium in the town of Foxborough, Massachusetts, which is located 28 miles (45 km) southwest of downtown Boston.
The Patriots are also headquartered at Gillette Stadium. An original member of the American Football League (AFL), the Patriots joined the NFL in 1970 as part of the AFL–NFL merger. The team changed its name from the original Boston Patriots after relocating to Foxborough in 1971. The Patriots played their home games at Foxboro Stadium from 1971 to 2001, then moved to Gillette Stadium at the start of the 2002 season. The Patriots’ rivalry with the New York Jets is considered one of the most bitter rivalries in NFL history.
The Patriots have appeared in ten Super Bowls in franchise history; they have won seven of them, most recently Super Bowl LIII in 2018. This total includes three wins over NFC teams—San Francisco (XXIII), Carolina (XXXVIII), and Philadelphia (LII)—and one AFC victory over Los Angeles Rams (XIV). The other three wins came against AFC teams—Baltimore Ravens(2001 and 2013 seasons) and Pittsburgh Steelers(2004). Since their peak during 2001 and 2003 seasons when they won three out of four Super Bowls, they have mostly alternated between winning and losing seasons; however, they have never had consecutive losing seasons since Dick McPherson took over as head coach for final nine games of 1968 season, a period when they went 2–7 record but made sizable improvement on offense under his watchful eyes enough to make him full-time head coach starting next season. During Bill Belichick’s tenure as head coach, which began in 2000, including winning six out conjunctions with quarterback Tom Brady, they have appeared in eightSuper Bowls—more than any other NFL team during that time period—and won five of them: Super Bowl36 after 2001 season, Super Bowl38 after 2003 season, Super Bowl39 after 2004 season, Super Bowl49 after 2014 season and most recently wonSuper Bowl51 after 2016 season against Atlanta Falcons for their fifth championship overall tying them with Dallas Cowboys and San Francisco 49ers for most Lombardi trophies by any NFL team.