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NFL Playoffs 2019 Picks: Conference Championship Predictions by Football Writers

Predicting the winners of this week’s NFL games.

NFL: Kansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

The Bleeding Green Nation writers picks are in for the Conference Championship round of the 2019 NFL Playoffs! Each week we’ll predict the winners of each and every NFL game. We’ll tally the results along the way and see who comes out on top at the end of the season.

After the Divisional round, my overall record still ranks first. But it’s the collective BGN community with the best playoff record so far.

Feel free to post your own predictions or discuss the writer predictions in the comments. You can also vote for who you think will win the games. I’ll tally those results in a “BGN Community” column. Vote in the polls beneath the table.

Let’s get to this week’s picks!

2019 Conference Championship Games

BGN Picks BLG Benjamin Cody Alexis Tyler James Lee BGN Readers
BGN Picks BLG Benjamin Cody Alexis Tyler James Lee BGN Readers
2018 Season Record 171-91 144-118 159-103 154-108 158-104 170-92 158-104 168-94
Playoffs Record 4-4 3-5 3-5 4-4 3-5 4-4 4-4 5-3
Divisional Record 2-2 1-3 0-4 2-2 2-2 3-1 1-3 2-2
Rams at Saints Saints Saints Rams Saints Rams Saints Saints Vote
Patriots at Chiefs Chiefs Chiefs Patriots Chiefs Chiefs Chiefs Chiefs Vote


Since there are only two games this week, the BGN staff gave some explanations for their picks.


Sean McVay really did not impress me in the Divisional Round. Ditto for Jared Goff. I’ll take the combination of Sean Payton and Drew Brees over them. As the Eagles unfortunately know, the Saints just don’t lose home playoff games. 7-0 in their last seven.

I’m sorry for jinxing you, Andy Reid, but I think this might finally be your year. Go beat the Pats and win the Super Bowl. Tom Brady is 3-4 in road playoff games.


Saints: Drew Brees is better than Jared Goff, and that’s what a shoot-out is gonna come down to. If the Rams win this, it’s because they were able to translate what worked against the Cowboys -- heavy run action with great pulling/misdirection -- against another staunch run defense. That’s a tough act to encore. And McVay’s yet to show the counter punch when his best move gets taken away.

Chiefs: I don’t want the Patriots to win, so it’s the Chiefs. I don’t trust Andy Reid in the playoffs, and I don’t trust a first-time playoff QB against Brady -- but I also don’t want the Patriots to win, so it’s the Chiefs. Dee Ford and Chris Jones need to have monster games against a really strong offensive line. Dang it: I’m talking myself out of it again.


Saints vs. Rams — Rams

Sean Payton and Drew Brees are a winning pair at home, to say the least. And the Saints have more than enough weapons to drop at least 30 on Los Angeles like they did in a November victory. But this isn’t November, and a week after they almost squandered home-field advantage vs. the Eagles, the Saints look very beatable. Brees gets the ball out quickly, but even a couple of Aaron Donald or Ndamukong Suh plays could swing the turnover differential. Couple that with the Rams’ incredible rushing attack, which gashed Dallas and can theoretically do the same to the Saints in the Superdome, and it smells like an L.A. upset to me.

Chiefs vs. Patriots — Patriots

Wow, was this tough to choose. For the longest time, I was set on Kansas City, and I still won’t be either shocked or upset if the Chiefs prove me wrong. If ever there were a time for Andy Reid to get back to — and then win — a Super Bowl, it’s this postseason with Patrick Mahomes. Seriously, even as I wrote that, I considered switching back to K.C. But goodness gracious, how in the world can you write off Bill Belichick in this spot? You just can’t. He always finds a way, and the guess here is that his scheme, plus a whole lot of Julian Edelman, spoils an otherwise magical run by Mahomes and Reid’s video-game offense.


Rams-Saints — SaintsDespite a fairly rocky performance against the Eagles, the Saints certainly are feeling themselves enough to have the momentum heading into this matchup. Jared Goff is still young and Drew Brees has the experience to capture the moment — especially coming off his 40th birthday. I think the Saints take this one, but probably shouldn’t get their hopes up on a Super Bowl win, which still seems a bit far fetched for this squad.

Patriots-Chiefs — Chiefs

I am all for Big Red taking another team to the Super Bowl and you can’t deny the spark the Chiefs had last week. Having home field advantage is huge for this matchup, but the fans will be the difference maker in Tom Brady falling short of yet another Super Bowl appearance. Patrick Mahomes will probably make a few mistakes given his inexperience, by overall his ability to improvise will get the best of the Patriots.


Saints vs. Rams — RamsI still believe Drew Brees is surgical, but I have questions about his deep ball. The Saints offensive line is banged up and proved to be unable to handle the Eagles’ defensive front with players rotating in and out, and I don’t see that getting better against Such and Donald. I believe that interior combination posses another challenge that will force Brees off his spot, something that’s been the key to limiting him as of late. On the flip side the Rams can still run the ball with the best of them and C.J. Anderson provides a fresh pair of legs. That advantage is compounded by the fact Sheldon Rankins is done. I believe the Rams win this one and advance to the Super Bowl, where they’ll meet…

Chiefs vs. Patriots — Chiefs

Betting on Andy Reid in a big game is why I have trust issues. But I like the Chiefs at home. Sure it’s freezing, but the weather didn’t impact the Chiefs last week as they moved the ball at will against the Colts. The Chiefs’ defense, for all its faults, has been much better at home. Kansas City is finally getting something from Sammy Watkins which is always a bonus, providing a pick your poison situation. If the Patriots can sustain their success on the ground with Sony Michel I believe they can make this one close and even win, but otherwise I don’t know how you slow down this offense.


Rams at Saints - Saints

Sean McVay is trying to become the second head coach since Doug Pederson to win a Super Bowl in just his second year. It’s a shame McVay won’t even get there. New Orleans used its game against Philadelphia to knock off some rest-caused rust and illustrated just how difficult it can be to get beaten at home. This is an intriguing match up between the young wunderkind and experienced-yet-hungry-if-not-ruthless Sean Payton. Ruthlessness will win.

Patriots at Chiefs - Chiefs

Arrowhead Stadium is the loudest outdoor stadium in the world and is hosting the AFC Championship for the first time in history. It’s hard to imagine the fans in KC won’t be so amped that they won’t break their previous world record of 142 decibels. Kansas City’s defense will need the help. As long as Andy Reid doesn’t gaffe open a door that allows Brady and Belichick to charge through, Patrick Mahomes will prove to be the better quarterback on this day and march the Chief’s to Reid’s second Super Bowl.



After a convincing, but tight victory over the Eagles, New Orleans has convinced me that they are the best remaining team in the NFC. In a match-up that will feature a Hall-of-Fame, Super Bowl-winning quarterback and a blonde haired, small handed California pretty boy, I have to go with the Saints. The expensive, yet relatively underperforming Los Angeles defense simply just does not have what it takes to stop Drew Brees, Michael Thomas, and Alvin Kamara.


The Patriots have done it again; for the 8th year in a row, New England will be in the AFC Championship game. While I may be in the minority with this opinion, Andy Reid will always be one of my favorite NFL coaches, and if the Eagles won’t be alive to exterminate the varmint from the north, Reid and the Chiefs are the next best option. Andy, please God, beat the Patriots. Oh and that Pat Mahomes kid is pretty good.


Vote for YOUR picks below. (Once again, click here if you can’t see the polls.)


Who will win: Rams or Saints?

This poll is closed

  • 33%
    (578 votes)
  • 66%
    (1143 votes)
1721 votes total Vote Now


Who will win: Patriots or Chiefs?

This poll is closed

  • 32%
    (578 votes)
  • 67%
    (1212 votes)
1790 votes total Vote Now

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