Everything You Need To Know About The NFL Wildcard Round

American Football Conference (AFC) Logo.

Photo by Wikimedia Commons

American Football Conference (AFC) Logo.

National Football Conference (NFC) Logo. (Photo by Wikimedia Commons)

The NFL Playoffs kicked off on Saturday, January 9, where 14 teams competed in a tournament style competition to get to the Super Bowl. 7 teams from the AFC (American Football Conference) and 7 teams from the NFC (National Football Conference) face off against each other until 1 team from each conference is left and the last 2 teams face each other in the Super Bowl, which will be held in Tampa Bay, Florida on February 7, 2021 at 6:40 PM.

The playoffs started with the Buffalo Bills matching up against the Indianapolis Colts. The Bills pulled ahead in a close one winning 27-24.

The next matchup was The Los Angeles Rams vs the Seattle Seahawks. The Rams were the underdogs in this matchup because their starting quarterback, Jared Goff, was injured.

However, the Rams backup quarterback, John Walford took a big hit by Seahawks safety Jamal Adams. The Rams had no other quarterback, so they brought in a recovering Jared Goff into the game. The Rams defense beat down the Seahawks taking a win 30-20 over them to move onto the next round.

“He must be good because he was in the locker room smiling,” Rams head coach Sean McVay stated in a postgame interview about John Wolford’s injury.

Saturday’s last matchup had Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers matching up against the Washington Football Team. The Bucs came out of Washington with the win, beating them 31-23. Although Washington was missing their starting QB Alex Smith due to injury, their backup QB Taylor Heinicke still put up a fight against the Buccaneers defense.

The next Wildcard matchup was on Sunday, January 10, 2021, where it started off with Lamar Jackson and the Baltimore Ravens facing off the Tennessee Titans. This is a matchup that Lamar Jackson would like to win, considering the Titans beat the number 1 seeded Ravens in the divisional round last season.

Jackson also has a losing record in the playoffs being 0-2. Jackson knew what he had to do and he did just that. Jackson led the raven to a victory in a close one over the Titans, winning 20-13. Titans QB Ryan Tannehill threw a pick towards the end of the game to Ravens cornerback Marcus Peters to end the game.

“Lamar ran for the locker room with time still on the clock.” ESPN stated on twitter after the Peters interception.

Lamar Jackson’s first win of the playoffs made him very excited and it sure did make the city of Baltimore happy.

The next matchup was the New Orleans Saints vs the Chicago Bears. This game was live on Nickelodeon and it had many funny clips and add-ons to make it more kid friendly. Saints head coach Sean Payton also promised before the game that if the Saints win, he’s going to get slimed.

Payton ended up getting slimed after the Saints won over the Bears 21-9. Another thing is that Bears TE and Saints legend, Jimmy Graham scored the last touchdown for the Bears with still time remaining and walked off the field into the locker room.

The last Wildcard matchup included the Pittsburgh Steelers vs the Cleveland Browns. Steelers young wideout JuJu Smith-Schuster said before the game that he wasn’t worried because they were facing “the same old Browns.” Although the Browns were the underdogs in this matchup, they showed why they belonged in the playoffs.

The Steelers were off to a rough start with already 2 turnovers in the first 5 minutes of the game. Smith-Schuster shouldn’t have made a comment before the game, because they ended up losing to Cleveland 48-37.

This year’s Wildcard round was an exciting one with many close games. Next week, the NFL kicks off the Divisional Round where there will sure be many exciting games.