2013 NFL Preview: Road to Super Bowl XLVIII

sb_xlviiiThe NFL season is set to begin and the ultimate prize is at the end as the Vince Lombardi Trophy waits for the team that can finish the marathon. The NFL season is a grueling one as one of the most physical games in the world claims plenty of victims. Every week these players put everything on the line, including their bodies, to give the fans what they want. Injuries happen and people get hurt but in the end everything is to get that one trophy at the end of the year. These players all look to the reward if they can put the hurt in the back of their minds and lay their bodies on the line every week. The biggest single sporting event in North America is the prize as all of North America watches when the lights go on in the Super Bowl. Many have tried but only 47 teams have succeeded in running the marathon all the way to the end. After 17 weeks there will only be 12 teams left of the 32 who started the season. Another few weeks after that and two teams will come out on top with only one taking home the prize. This year the prize will feature a completely new feature as well when that one team will be handed their trophy while standing outside. The Super Bowl will move to a northern outdoor stadium for the first time ever. The Super Bowl has always been a game that attempts to remove the x-factors from the equation pitting two teams against each other with little variables. This year that has gone out the window as the Super Bowl will move to MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. This game will be an even tougher test for teams that have gone through the ringer as New Jersey in the February is not known for their tropical climate. Freezing Cold temperatures and snow may be a factor this year adding one more speed bump on the way to the Vince Lombardi Trophy. That will be in the minds of many of the teams as they start the season but in reality it is far off. There is still a season to play and although the end will be unique the rest of the season will be the same, predictably unpredictable. It all starts now as the NFL gets ready to kickoff their season and 32 teams start their season at 0-0 all with a clean slate in a new season that will end in New Jersey.

 

American Football Conference

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The AFC is entering the 2013 season looking to repeat as Super Bowl Champions with the Baltimore Ravens winning the Vince Lombardi Trophy last year. The conference does not always get the most take about the best teams but they still have some of the strongest teams in the NFL. Two of these teams will be right at the top this year as the Houston Texans and Denver Broncos will fight it out for the AFC title all year. The Texans will do this with a stellar defence that only got better when they added Ed Reed in the offseason. Along with this offence the Texans look to a potent offence that can put up points on the ground or through the air. They will have to beat out one of the most legendary QBs in the league who has more weapons this year in the Denver Broncos and Peyton Manning. Manning had great success in 2012 but could not get past the Ravens and this year they look to take another step towards the Super Bowl. Both teams will likely trade the top two spots throughout the year and will earn the first round byes. In the final two division spots there will still be two very good teams in the New England Patriots and the Cincinnati Bengals. After an offseason of turmoil and arrests the Patriots will come back and although they are no longer the dominant power they were a good showing is still in the cards. The Patriots will fight for a bye but will not get it as they have lost a step in the past few years but they cannot be overlooked. The Cincinnati Bengals are the new team on the block as they will win the AFC North with a punishing defence and a good offence. The Bengals will not earn a first round bye after being beat up and barely taking the North but they will get to host at least one game. In the wild card spots the former champions and the rising team will take their shots at being a wild card surprise. The Baltimore Ravens are still a good team but with so many losses in the offseason will not win the decision instead taking a wild card spot. The Indianapolis Colts will be on the rise once again behind a QB that might have the best chance of overcoming the sophomore slump. Andrew Luck and the Colts will not have an easy time of getting here but when all is settled they will see the playoffs once again. The AFC will have some very tough teams and the playoffs are sure to be a close few weeks with plenty of drama throughout the weeks. In the end one team has to come out on top and represent the AFC in their quest to repeat as one team will come out as the best team in the conference.

 

Prediction:
1. Houston Texans
2. Denver Broncos
3. New England Patriots
4. Cincinnati Bengals
Wild Card:
5. Baltimore Ravens
6. Indianapolis Colts

 

AFC Champion:

houston_texans

 

 

 

 

 

Houston Texans
– In the end the Houston Texans are the only team in the AFC where it becomes hard to find a weakness and for that reason they will come out on top as they will face the Broncos in the Conference Finals and in a tight battle will be crowned AFC champions and earn a spot in their first Super Bowl in franchise history

 

National Football Conference

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The NFC is the old conference with some of the most legendary teams in the NFL and they are looking to bring back the Vince Lombardi Trophy to the conference that it started in. Last year the San Francisco 49ers were the NFC representative in the Super Bowl and came close to completing one of the best comebacks in Super Bowl history. They couldn’t do it though losing the game to the Ravens and falling short of expectations. This year the NFC will be looking to get back and win the Super Bowl as one team will have the pride of the old conference in their hands. Not a lot will change this year in the NFC as the two top teams will remain at the top for the second year in a row. The Atlanta Falcons will take the top spot as they continue to be one of the toughest teams in the conference. They will take the top spot as the best team in the conference and will likely not have much of a challenge in doing so. The San Francisco 49ers will be the other bye team this year as they will emerge from one of the best fights in the league this year winning the NFC West. They will get a tough ride all season though and they will not challenge for the top spot although a fight for the second place spot could be in the works once again. The Green Bay Packers are not the strongest team in the NFC anymore but they find ways to win and they will once again win the division and earn a playoff spot. They will finish just outside of the bye spot but are not a team to overlook as they could make a surprising run. The last division winner will be the Washington Redskins who won’t surprise anyone this year like they did last year but will take the division. They will emerge from the unstable division and will come into the playoffs behind Robert Griffin III but going any further will be a challenge. The wild card spots will be taken by two of the up and coming teams as one will finally be back and the other will return to the playoffs for the second straight year. The Seahawks will come up just short in their division race but could be the most dangerous team in the conference. They will be back in the playoffs after making it last year and this time will be looking for the Super Bowl or nothing. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers will return to the playoffs with an improved defence and a solid offence that will put them over the top in what promises to be a good wild card battle. The NFC will see some new teams but most of the same as the conference will come down to some big battles and great games.

 

Prediction:
1. Atlanta Falcons
2. San Francisco 49ers
3. Green Bay Packers
4. Washington Redskins
Wild Card:
5. Seattle Seahawks
6. Tampa Bay Buccaneers

 

NFC Champion:

seattle_seahawks

 

 

Seattle Seahawks
– They may take the wild card but the NFC has seen their fair share of wild card teams advancing to the Super Bowl and the Seahawks will be the latest as they will get through everyone although they will not dominate instead grinding out wins and remaining the underdogs throughout the playoffs

Super Bowl XLVIII
Houston Texans 21 – 17 Seattle Seahawks
– The snow and cold will make this Super Bowl a defensive battle and although the Seahawks have a good defence the Texans have a better defence and will come out on top as they will finally reach the end goal to their build from expansion team to Super Bowl Champions

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