PLAYOFF BUZZ: If the playoffs started today . . .





By MICHAEL CUNNINGHAM

NFC top contenders

The Falcons (13-2) have clinched a first-round bye and home-field advantage throughout the NFC playoffs. Atlanta would open the playoffs on Jan. 12 or 13 against the lowest-seeded team to advance from the NFC wild card round.

The Packers (11-4) have clinched the NFC North title and will be the NFC’s No. 2 seed with a first-round bye. Green Bay would open the playoffs on Jan. 12 or 13 with a home game against the highest-seeded winner from the NFC wild card round.

NFC wild card picture

The 49ers (10-4-1) have clinched a playoff spot and would play host to the sixth-seeded Vikings (9-6) on Jan. 5 or 6. The No. 5 Seahawks (10-5) have clinched a playoff spot and would play at the No. 4 Redskins (9-6) on Jan. 5 or 6.

The other teams with a realistic chance to still earn one of the final two wild cards are the Bears (9-6) and Cowboys (8-7). The Giants (8-7) also have an outside shot.

How Vegas views the Falcons

The Falcons are 9-to-4 co-favorites to win the NFC along with the Packers. Atlanta and Seattle are both 6-to-1 to win the Super Bowl behind Denver (3-to-1), New England (7-to-2) and San Francisco (5-to-1).

Quote of the day

“If Atlanta can improve their run defense — allow around 100 yards a game — they will be New Orleans-bound.” — NFL Network analyst Sterling Sharpe.

Falcons playoffs tickets

Tickets go on sale to the general public beginning Thursday at 10 a.m. Tickets can be purchased through Ticketmaster.com at all Ticketmaster locations, or by calling Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000. Tickets start at $65 and there is an eight-ticket limit per person.

AFC top contenders

The Texans (12-3) have clinched the AFC South title and would be the No. 1 seed with a first-round bye and home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs. Houston would open the playoffs on Jan. 12 or 13 against the lowest-seeded winner to advance from the AFC wild card round.

The Broncos (12-3) have clinched the AFC West title and would be the No. 2 seed with a first-round bye. Denver would open the playoffs on Jan. 12 or 13 with a home game against the highest-seeded team to advance from the AFC wild card round.

AFC wild card picture

The Patriots (11-4) have clinched the AFC East title and would play host to the sixth-seeded Bengals (9-6) on Jan. 5 or 6. The Ravens (10-5) have clinched the AFC North title and would be the No. 4 seed with a home game against the fifth-seeded Colts (10-5) on Jan. 5 or 6.

All other AFC teams have been eliminated from the playoffs.

13 comments Add your comment

Marcus

December 25th, 2012
9:42 am

Merry Christmas, MC.

Hopefully, come April 2012, you and C-Viv will be writing a similar blog on the Hawks potential playoff opponents.

lowdownjj

December 25th, 2012
10:30 am

I don’t care who the Falcons have to play… and I hope they have the same confidence that I do

Leon "Lee" Golembiewski

December 25th, 2012
11:27 am

Thank You Atlanta Falcons. Bet Christmas Present & Birthday Present and every holiday Present golled into one. You made my year totally entertaing and fatastic. Thank You Thank You Thank you

Choke On My Grits

December 26th, 2012
12:54 am

@Leon “Lee” Golembiewski ….are you typing toothless ?

[...] coach Mike Smith didn’t plan on watching the rest of the conference play on more… PLAYOFF BUZZ: If the playoffs started today . . . – blogs.ajc.com 12/25/2012 By MICHAEL CUNNINGHAM NFC top contenders The Falcons (13-2) have [...]

Michael

December 26th, 2012
3:54 pm

lowdownjj has the right idea. It does not matter who draws the short stick and has to come down to the Dome; we want them – bring it!
We should be the team nobody wants to play in January. If we should “want” to play anybody, it should be Green Bay. We owe them, we should be looking for an opportunity to “repay” them. (see New York Giants vs. Falcons)

GHunt

December 27th, 2012
12:21 am

We got to beat the best to be the best. It makes no difference who we have to play. Let’s line them up and knock them down like dominoes.
Its the PLAYOFFS baby.

meme

December 27th, 2012
11:02 am

choke on my grits that was a good one!! I’m LMAO!!

[...] If playoffs started today [...]

Priceless

December 28th, 2012
5:54 pm

IF they started today , the Failcons would go to 0-4 and let the real teams with the real schedules finish this thing off

[...] If playoffs started today [...]

[...] If playoffs started today [...]

[...] If playoffs started today [...]