Published: Jan. 12, 2018 at 11:40 a.m.
Updated: Jan. 12, 2018 at 03:37 p.m.

Will Super Bowl LII be won by ring-less QB? Case Keenum, Matt Ryan have shot


This weekend's Divisional Round features three quarterbacks who account for eight of the last 16 Super Bowl titles: New England's Tom Brady (5), Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger (2) and New Orleans' Drew Brees (1). The five remaining quarterbacks in this year's playoffs (Tennessee's Marcus Mariota, Jacksonville's Blake Bortles, Atlanta's Matt Ryan, Philadelphia's Nick Foles and Minnesota's Case Keenum) have not hoisted the Lombardi Trophy.

If Mariota, Bortles and Keenum want to advance to Championship Sunday and ultimately give themselves a chance at a title, they will have to defeat one of the Super Bowl-winning QBs this weekend, given the lineup of games: Tennessee at New England; Jacksonville at Pittsburgh; New Orleans at Minnesota. Plus, the Atlanta-Philadelphia bout will put either Ryan or Foles in the NFC title game.

So, if Super Bowl LII is to be won by a ring-less QB, who has the best shot?

This is Case Keenum's best chance to hoist Lombardi
I really like what Case Keenum's been doing in Minnesota this season. Surrounded with talented playmakers and playing with a lot of confidence, Keenum's playing with house money at this point because this Minnesota team is the best opportunity he's going to get. It's been a lot of fun watch, and I hope it lasts a few more weeks.
Dan Quinn's Falcons are true contenders again
Matt Ryan's Falcons are well positioned to win because they are peaking at the right time. The defense is starting to play at a high level and the offense is finally finding its identity under first-year coordinator Steve Sarkisian. Given that Ryan still has a connection with Julio Jones and Mohamed Sanu and is backed by a strong run game, I can see the Falcons hoisting the Lombardi at the end of the tournament.
Jaguars' defense will carry Blake Bortles to the top
Seeing how Blake Bortles did against the Bills in the wild-card game (87 pass yards, 88 rush yards), you'd think he'd be a longshot. But Jacksonville's defense is good enough to carry him and the offense. The Jaguars have allowed fewer than 10 points in eight games this season (including playoffs) -- four more than any other team -- and rank in the top two in almost every major category. A strong defensive performance plus a consistent run game led by rookie Leonard Fournette could be the winning formula.
Vikings poised to win first-ever Lombardi Trophy at home
There's a lot of motivation to become the first home team at a Super Bowl, and the Vikings have all the tools. The offense is taking care of the ball and the defense is the best in the league. Minnesota has a really good chance to do something special as a team, so I'm taking Keenum on this one.
Falcons rolling as the postseason underdog
It's going to be Matt Ryan who wins his first ring. This team is clicking and is tough to stop. Plus, the defense is playing lights out right now. The unit ranked eighth in the league in points allowed (19.7) and has given up only two offensive touchdowns in its last two games. Atlanta might have been the 6 seed, but it isn't playing like one.

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