By Bryan Dietzler
The 2017-18 playoffs are here, and it’s time to start the journey to the biggest game on the planet, the Super Bowl. There are 12 teams ready to take on the effort to try to reach the Super Bowl and win a title.
There are familiar faces such as the New England Patriots and the Pittsburgh Steelers. Some of these teams haven’t been in the postseason for a while like the New Orleans Saints and the Los Angeles Rams.
How do the playoff teams rank this going into the wild card round? Who is the best? Who is the worst? We will find out as we look at the 12 teams in the 2017-18 NFL playoffs ranked top to bottom in this the playoff edition of the sometimes late but always consistent NFL Power Poll for the wild card round.
Where does your team rank?
(Note: We will do a final power poll of all 32 teams after the Super Bowl).
- New England Patriots-The Patriots are the class of the playoffs right now and are the team to beat. They are poised to earn another championship and there is no reason, right now, to think that they won’t be able to do so. Can they make it all the way again?
- Minnesota Vikings-The Vikings may be the best team in the NFC with Carson Wentz out in Philadelphia. They will be playing their games at home which gives them a huge advantage. Will they be the first team to play a Super Bowl in their home stadium?
- Pittsburgh Steelers-I like the Steeler’s chances. If anyone is going to unseat the Patriots it’s the Steelers. But can they do it? I bet a lot of people are hoping they will.
- Philadelphia Eagles-Even with Nick Foles, this team is solid thanks to their defense. They will need their defense because the teams they will face have good offenses. Let’s see how they do. Will they show that they are the NFC’s best team or get to the playoffs and fold?
- New Orleans Saints-The Saints could be the dark horse of the NFC. If they can turn it on both offensively and defensively in the playoffs, they might be able to reach the Super Bowl. Will Drew Brees get one more Super Bowl victory? It would be nice to see him do it.
- Carolina Panthers-The Panthers are going to be a tough team to beat but they can be beaten. Starting out playing the Saints is going to be a big test and they may not pass it. But anything can happen in the NFL playoffs.
- Kansas City Chiefs-The Chiefs could be better than I think but it’s going to be hard for them to get past the Patriots and Steelers. Will they be able to the powerhouse teams and make it to the Super Bowl? It’s doubtful but anything is possible.
- Atlanta Falcons-The Falcons could end up surprising a lot of people as they know what it’s like to play and win in the playoffs. But right now, it looks like they are an underdog. This team will need to ratchet it up on both offense and defense to get to the next game. They could surprise a lot of people because their experience will account for something, but will that experience be enough?
- Los Angeles Rams-My lack of faith in the Rams is due to their inexperience in the playoffs. They could win but it’s not likely and they may have to wait until next year is a success. They will probably be bested by a better and more experienced team.
- Jacksonville Jaguars-The Jaguars are in the same boat as the Rams, the Titans, and the Bills. They don’t have any recent playoff experience. Their offense may be what lets them down when it’s all said and done and with some improvement there, they could be a dangerous team. But not this year. It is exciting to see them finally earn a playoff spot though.
- Tennessee Titans-The Titans may be one of the losing teams in this wildcard round. They have a lot of work to do and even though they are in the playoffs, they are one of the weaker teams of the group. With some work, they could be much better next year and might be much more competitive in the playoffs.
- Buffalo Bills-The Bills made it to playoffs for the first time in a long time but could see an early exit. With LeSean McCoy hurt the onus to win the game will be on the quarterback and that’s a tall order for Buffalo’s signal caller. But this team deserves a shot and will likely be everyone’s favorite heading into wildcard weekend.