NFL Playoff Standings 2023: Post-Divisional Round Rankings and Super Bowl Odds
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And then there were four.
With the conclusion of the final games of the NFL Divisional Round on Sunday, we now know which four teams will advance to face off in the conference championships on Sunday, Jan. 29.
In the AFC, Joe Burrow and the No. 3 Cincinnati Bengals bested the No. 2 Bills in snowy Buffalo 27-10 to meet the No. 1 Kansas City Chiefs in the AFC title game.
With the Bengals’ win, the AFC championship game will be played in Kansas City, not at the neutral site in Atlanta at which the game would have been played if the Bills won. Tickets for that phantom game had already been sold, and Burrow had a retort for all the non-believes in his postgame interview with Tracy Wolfson.
“Better send those refunds,” Burrow said.
In the NFC, the No. 5 Dallas Cowboys did their best to sneak out of San Francisco with a win against the No. 2 49ers, but Mike McCarthy’s squad couldn’t get it done.
Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott had two interceptions, continuing a penchant that has haunted him in the latter half of the season.
Let’s take a closer look at the bracket (and Super Bowl odds) for the four teams remaining in the postseason and break down each conference matchup.
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AFC Championship Game
Matchup: No. 1 Kansas City Chiefs vs. No. 3 Cincinnati Bengals
Date: Sunday, Jan. 29
Time: 6:30 p.m. ET (CBS)
Super Bowl Odds: Chiefs (+255), Bengals (+260)
At the beginning of the 2022-23 NFL season, it already seemed clear that the AFC Championship Game would come down to some combination of the Kansas City Chiefs, Buffalo Bills and Cincinnati Bengals.
The Bengals finished with the worst record of the three at 12-4, but Joe Burrow’s squad has proven themselves when it’s mattered the most.
Sunday’s divisional round game against the Bills should have put the Bengals at a distinct disadvantage, given the snowy conditions and roaring crowd in Buffalo. Instead, Cincinnati established itself as a legitimate Super Bowl contender by finishing three scores ahead of Buffalo.
The AFC title game is a repeat of last year’s bout, and though Kansas City is the higher seed, the result may be the same in the Bengals’ favor, as quarterback Patrick Mahomes suffered a high ankle sprain in Saturday’s win over Jacksonville. Mahomes has said he will play in the championship game.
The Chiefs and Bengals most recently met in Week 13 of the regular season, a 27-24 Bengals victory. That was the same score in the Bengals’ overtime win over the Chiefs in last year’s title game, too.
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NFC Championship Game
Matchup: No. 1 Philadelphia Eagles vs. No. 2 San Francisco 49ers
Date: Sunday, Jan. 29
Time: 3 p.m. ET (Fox)
Super Bowl Odds: Eagles (+275), 49ers (+310)
Mr. Irrelevant is now set to play on the second-biggest weekend of the year in the NFL season, save only for the Super Bowl.
So Brock Purdy may like to see that nickname retired for good.
Selected 262nd in the 2022 NFL Draft, Purdy opened the season as the third-string quarterback on the San Francisco 49ers depth chart. The Iowa State product is a perfect 7-0 as a starter for the team this season, stepping in when both Trey Lance and Jimmy Garoppolo were injured.
Now Purdy’s golden run will face its ultimate test as the 49ers, fresh off their 12th-straight victory, meet the No. 1 Philadelphia Eagles in the NFC title game.
Though the clash will be billed as the 49ers’ vaunted defense taking on the Eagles’ high-flying offense, in truth, these are two well-balanced teams who could each play a complete game. Purdy has been incredible to watch, but with Jalen Hurts back at the helm for Philadelphia, the bar for Purdy is higher than ever.
Odds via DraftKings
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