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Projecting the postseason

The Eagles back in the NFC Championship game? Why not.

I just spent 15 minutes jotting down potential playoff match-ups and working my way through the NFL postseason. Here's what I came up with:

Wild Card Round

Eagles (3) vs. Saints (6)

Sean Payton matching wits with Chip Kelly has scoreboard-breaking potential. The Saints defense still isn't very good, and Drew Brees does not have the kind of weapons we are used to seeing. Jimmy Graham looks a step slower than usual and Marques Colston has been MIA for much of the season.

PICK: Eagles 38, Saints 31

Bears (4) vs. 49ers (5)

Colin Kaepernick and Frank Gore should run all over this awful Bears defense.

PICK: 49ers 31, Bears 10

Divisional Round

Seahawks (1) vs. 49ers (5)

Arguably the two best eams in the NFC, they split their season series. Go with the Seahawks at home.

PICK: Seahawks 17, 49ers 13

Panthers (2) vs. Eagles (3)

Reunion Sunday as Sean McDermott and Ron Rivera host their former employer. The Panthers defense is a legit unit, probably better than any the Eagles have faced this year. But the Panthers offense is underwhelming as an inconsistent Cam Newton might now be forced to deal with a hobbled Steve Smith.

PICK: Eagles 27, Panthers 17

NFC Championship

Seahawks (1) vs. Eagles (3)

It will be fascinating to see how the Seahawks' zone scheme matches up with Kelly's dynamic attack. Seattle closes quicker on the ball than any team in the league, which could make things difficult for an offense that thrives on getting their playmakers in space. Russell Wilson is the X Factor.

PICK: Seahawks 31, Eagles 20

AFC Wild Card

Colts (3) vs. Dolphins (6)

The Colts have played a hellish schedule. The Dolphins just aren't as good.

PICK: Colts 24, Dolphins 10

Bengals (4) vs. Chiefs (5)

The lack of a vertical passing game is going to kill the Chiefs come playoff time. It's why Jim Harbaugh benched Alex Smith last year, and it's why the Bengals will win this one.

PICK: Bengals 24, Chiefs 14

AFC Divisional Round

Broncos (1) vs. Bengals (4)

Peyton Manning or Andy Dalton?

PICK: Broncos 41, Bengals 28

Patriots (2) vs. Colts (3)

This Patriots team is as vulnerable as we have seen it in quite some time.

PICK: Colts 35, Patriots 31

Broncos (1) vs. Colts (3)

The storyline writes itself here.

PICK: Broncos 48, Colts 24


Peyton Manning and the Broncos offense against Russell Wilson and the Seahawks defense. Manning shuts up the haters who say he chokes in the postseason.

PICK: Broncos 28, Seahawks 24