With the 2017 NFL season just around the corner, our analysts provide their predictions, including the winners of individual awards, playoff teams for each conference and Championship Sunday/Super Bowl forecasts.
AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
Dave Dameshek: Steelers over Patriots. Three of five Brady-Belichick Super Bowl wins were immediately preceded by wins over Pittsburgh in the AFC title game. Now the Pats stand on the cusp of joining the Steelers as six-time Lombardi champs. Enough's enough. In a shootout for the ages, Roetlhlisberger finally vanquishes Brady.
NFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME
Dave Dameshek: Seahawks over Falcons.Earl Thomas is the Jenga piece of the Seahawks' D. Take him away, the whole thing implodes. Good news, then, that Thomas is back after confronting football mortality. I have a hunch this might be it for the Pete Carroll Era -- and I further suspect the Seahawks will rally around that to championship effect.