Who, What, When, Where, WINNER, and Why?
The Wild Card round of the NFL Playoffs begin with the AFC on Saturday and the NFC on Sunday.
To help you prepare for one of the most exciting weeks in the NFL season, here’s a breakdown of each game in a modified version of the 5 W’s and the H.
This is the 6 W’s.
Who- Kansas City Chiefs vs. Houston Texans
What- AFC Wild Card vs. AFC South Champs
When- Saturday, 1:20 p.m. ESPN
Where- NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas.
WINNER- Kansas City Chiefs, 17-13
Why- The Kansas City Chiefs come into the Wild Card round as one of, if not the, hottest team in football. After starting the season 1-5, the team has caught fire and has won 10 straight games.
The Kansas City defense will be a tough match-up for a Houston offense which has gone through four different quarterbacks this season.
Both teams have great defenses and less than average offenses. It should be a low scoring game as both defenses are likely to dominate the game.
Houston will target DeAndre Hopkins as much as possible, but that may be difficult against a Kansas City defense which was second in the league with 22 interceptions.
The biggest game changer in this match-up will be how effectively Alex Smith can hit his two main receivers, Jeremy Maclin and Travis Kelce.
Kansas City beat Houston in the first week of the season, but it’s safe to say, these teams are far different now.
Who- Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Cincinnati Bengals
What- AFC Wild Card vs. AFC North Champs
When- Saturday, 5:15 p.m. CBS
Where- Paul Brown Stadium in Cincinnati, Ohio
WINNER- Pittsburgh Steelers, 27-20
Why- The Steelers made it into the playoffs in week 17 after they beat the Cleveland Browns and the New York Jets lost to the Buffalo Bills.
Even with DeAngelo Williams questionable for the game, the Steelers offense is high powered and can put up big points with ease.
It’s going to be a shootout between the two AFC North rivals. The big issue for the Bengals is at the quarterback position. As of right now, A.J. McCarron is the starting quarterback. Andy Dalton took off his cast on Tuesday, but it is unclear whether he can throw a ball effectively by Saturday.
The last time these two teams played each other was the last time Dalton started. He injured his throwing hand while trying to make a tackle after throwing an interception to the Pittsburgh defense.
If McCarron remains the starter for Saturday, it will be difficult for the Bengals to keep up with the Steelers.
Who- Seattle Seahawks vs. Minnesota Vikings
What- NFC Wild Card vs. NFC North Champs
When- Sunday, 10:05 a.m. NBC
Where- TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota
WINNER- Seattle Seahawks, 28-14
Why- The Seahawks are the defending NFC Champions for the last two years. At the start of the season, it didn’t look like that was going to continue, but as the season has gone on, the team has taken off.
Russell Wilson is playing on another level right now and has that offense playing well enough to carry them to the Super Bowl.
Minnesota is probably the biggest unknown in the playoffs. They have been up and down all year. The team’s defense is outstanding, but the offense has been scarce.
Adrian Peterson is the only real weapon that the team has. There’s no doubt that the Vikings would give him the ball over and over, but the lack of a pass game may negatively effect their chances in the game.
Seattle’s defense hasn’t been the “Legion of Boom” this year, but with the Vikings already weak offense, plus the freezing cold temperatures which are projected, the Seahawks defense could be in for a big game.
Who- Green Bay Packers vs. Washington Redskins
What- NFC Wild Card vs. NFC East
When- Sunday, 1:40 p.m. Fox
Where- FedEx Field in Landover, Maryland
WINNER- Washington Redskins, 31-21
Why- This game could easily go either way. The Green Bay Packers have not been the same dominant team which they have been in years past. On the other end, the Washington Redskins won a division which was probably the worst in football.
Washington will be at home where they won 6 of their 9 games this season. Kirk Cousins has this team playing very well and has lead them to 4 straight wins.
It’s been uncharted territory in years past for the Packers offense to be as terrible as they have been this season. Injuries have really hurt the offense.
Neither team should make it far in the playoffs, but somebody has to win this game. The Packers are the favorites, but Cousins and the Redskins offense at home will be too much for Green Bay offense to keep up with.