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NFL Conference Championship weekend predictions

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NFL Bracket Graphic
Graphic: Ryan Boone

On Sunday, Jan. 20, the American Football Conference Championship and National Football Conference Championships are taking place as a part of the NFL playoffs. The AFC Championship features the Kansas City Chiefs against the New England Patriots, while the Los Angeles Rams are set to take on the New Orleans Saints.

Saints quarterback Drew Brees is having an MVP caliber season. He currently has a completion percentage of 74.4 percent. That being said, not all of the Saints are passing well. Running back Alvin Kamara is currently only averaging 4.9 yards per carry while wide receiver Michael Thomas is averaging 11.2 yards per carry.

The Rams are definitely being carried by quarterback Jared Goff and running back Todd Gurley. Goff has a completion percentage of 66 percent, while Gurley averages 4.9 yards per carry. The Rams have had many close games this season while the Saints have had a lot of blowout wins. Goff and Gurley have led the Rams to a 13-3 season in only their third season in LA. Despite all of that, I believe the Saints defense will shutdown Goff, Gurley, and the rest of the modern “best show on turf.”

Final prediction: Saints over the Rams 24-21.

The night cap on Sunday features the New England Patriots and the Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC Championship. Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has lead the Patriots to five Super Bowls in his career. He has a completion percentage of 65.8 percent and has only thrown 11 interceptions this year. Running back James White averages 4.5 yards per carry and has had zero fumbles this season. Brady will look to target Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski, his two favorite targets on the team. This will help the Patriots get to the end zone but I don’t think it will be enough for them.

The Chiefs have star Quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Mahomes has come out of nowhere this season and has helped to turn around the Kansas City franchise. Wide Receiver Sammy Watkins currently averages 13 yards per catch and has had three touchdowns this season. With Mahomes on a roll as of late, I think he will come up big for the Chiefs this weekend and will lead them to victory over the five time Super Bowl Champion Patriots.  

Final prediction: Chiefs by a touchdown 35-28

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