Road to the Super Bowl, Burrow Mega Extension on the Horizon, Rodgers Trade Looming, and Other NFL Bullets
Happy conference championship day to those who observe. We’re a couple of hours away from what should be an exciting day of playoff football. And by the time we talk tomorrow, we’ll know who will meet in the Super Bowl in two weeks. The Bengals, Chiefs, 49ers, and Eagles are today’s final four, and I put together individual previews with paths to victories for each this weekend.
- Usually, a trip to the Super Bowl earns a team some respect. Not so in the Bengals’ case this year. The Bengals have used what they feel like a slight by everyone outside Cincinnati as motivation all season. They’re one win away from a second straight trip to the Super Bowl.
- Can Zac Taylor, Brian Callahan, and Lou Anarumo develop a perfect game plan for the Mahomes and the Chiefs?
- The Chiefs are playing in their fifth consecutive AFC Championship this evening. However, they surely haven’t forgotten how No. 4 went against these same Bengals last season. They most definitely have heard the noise from Cincinnati.
- Will the Chiefs stand tall and defend Arrowhead today?
- The Eagles, who were plus 3,000 to reach the Super Bowl during the preseason, are now just one win away. Still, the 49ers will pose a much stiffer challenge than the Giants did last weekend. So does head coach Nick Siriani have an answer for the stable of playmakers with which San Francisco comes to Philadelphia this afternoon?
- Trey Lance. Jimmy Garoppolo. Brock Purdy. It doesn’t really matter. Kyle Shanahan has built a force in San Francisco, and the 49ers are a win away from the Super Bowl despite being on their third starting quarterback of the season.
- They’ll have to beat the 14-win Eagles on Sunday in Philadelphia if they want to prove it on the NFL’s biggest stage in two weeks, and here’s how they can do it:
- Give those a read before the games get underway today, and leave some feedback in the comments here or on the stories. Let me know if you enjoy the format, have some suggestions, whatever. I’ve been playing around with different formats each week through the playoffs to shape next season’s NFL coverage at BN, so feedback is encouraged.
- Let’s get into some news around the league this morning before I get out of here and start cooking for today’s action.
- The Bengals’ coaching staff has played a considerable role in their success. They’ve been one of the best in the league over the past two seasons. So, it’s no surprise that the front office is investing in keeping the staff unchanged. This morning Ian Rapoport reported that the Bengals would extend quarterbacks coach Dan Pitcher.
- Pitcher received inquiries from the Ravens and was interviewed on Friday virtually for the Bucs. He has coached Burrow since 2020, helping oversee the QB’s rise from a talented rookie to becoming one of the game’s best.
- According to Rapoport, Burrow is in line for a blockbuster extension this summer that could make Joe Burrow the highest-paid quarterback in the league this offseason. Rapoport says that the two sides will work on striking a deal before the 2023 season.
- Colts running back Jonathan Taylor underwent ankle surgery this week. Taylor said he’s doing everything he can to ensure he’s “100 percent ready to rock” next season.
- Georgia quarterback Stetson Bennett was arrested for public intoxication this morning. According to an ABC affiliate in Dallas, police responded to a call of a man banging on doors in the Old East Dallas area. After contacting Bennett, the police determined that he was intoxicated and arrested him around 6:00 am.
- So, we may have finally seen the end of Aaron Rodgers in Green Bay. No, for real this time. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that a Rodgers trade is likelier than ever before this morning. According to Schefter, “financial reasons, the state of the Packers franchise, and ultimately, the feelings of the team and the star quarterback” are driving the potential end of the line for Rodgers and the Packers.
- *Takes a deep sigh* … There’s plenty of time to discuss where Rodgers might play next season. Or if this comes to fruition. But today, we’re just going to bask in the idea that we may not have to see him in a Packers uniform anymore.
- Alright, I’m out; enjoy the games today!
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