Originally Posted by baja
Who do you want to play?
I assume you mean the divisional round? The conference game would be for the AFC Championship and a spot in the Super Bowl. Until proven otherwise, I assume the Patriots will be coming to IF@MH for the AFCCG.
Between the Bengals, Colts & Ravens, I'd just say bring 'em on. The Broncos can take any of the three of them, because none are complete teams.
* The Bengals have a solid defense, but their offense is not as strong. Especially since there are reports of injury concerns for Benjarvis Green-Ellis. If he's down, or slowed, the Bengals becomes one-dimensional in favor of the Broncos defense. Of the top players on the Bengals offense, I'm most concerned about their TE, Jermaine Gresham. Peyton and crew can beat the Bengal defense. It won't be pretty or glorious, but they can put up enough points.
* For the Colts, I'd predict the Bronco offense has to jump on them early. Andrew Luck has an established tendency to hold the ball too long. If the Bronco offense can put up enough points to force the Colts to throw, there will be sacks and Luck will make mistakes -- especially if Champ and Chris Harris can slow down Reggie Wayne and take TJ Hilton out of the game. The Colts defense is nothing special. If the Broncos do get a sizable lead, they absolutely cannot let up and go conservative to run out the clock. Luck has also proven his ability to live up to his name with fourth quarter comebacks.
* For the Ravens? Again, their defense is not the Giant Purple Monster that it was a few years ago. Flacco is similar to Luck in that he'll hold the ball too long and make mistakes under pressure. We saw that just a couple weeks ago. Ray Rice will be the player to watch and red-dog, if Jim Caldwell starts calling screens and draws to slow the Bronco pass rush. He's savvy enough to do it, and a big part of the reason his predecessor was fired was that he didn't use Ray Rice enough.
Between the three, right now I'd say the Bengals will be the most likely to give a tough game in Denver. But that's why they play the games, no?