The Bengals and Bills will finally play after their regular-season meeting was canceled, meaning Joe Burrow and Josh Allen will officially face off for the first time.
The Cowboys and 49ers will meet at Candlestick Park on the 30th anniversary of their 1993 NFC Championship game en route to Dallas where they will win their first Super Bowl under owner Jerry Jones.
The top ranked Chiefs and Eagles get into the action after enjoying byes during the crazy wild card round.
And the Jaguars are amazingly still playing. Last week, they overcame a 27-0 deficit, the third-largest comeback win in NFL postseason history, and beat the Chargers to progress. The only two major comebacks were Buffalo’s 1992 wildcard win over the Houston Oilers (32 points) and the Colts’ 2013 wildcard win over Kansas City (28).
But here’s what Alabama Crimson Tide fans need to know about the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs:
1) Game of the week
For Alabama believers, it’s the Giants at Eagles as seven former Crimson Tide players could be active Saturday night (7:15 CT, Fox). Landon Collins, Xavier McKinney and Evan Neal are with the Giants, while Landon Dickerson, Jalen Hurts, Josh Jobe and DeVonta Smith are with the top-ranked Eagles.
It is the teams’ third meeting of the season.
However, it will be the first playoff matchup in NFL history in which both starting quarterbacks each had at least 600 rushing yards in the regular season, and the fifth with at least 500 rushing yards each.
2) Can he support the conversation?
After the Dallas Cowboys clinched their first playoff win of the Mike McCarthy era against the Buccaneers Monday night, cornerback Trevon Diggs sent a very vocal message to an ESPN personality.
While Diggs was still on the field after the 31-14 win, he let Stephen A. Smith know he’d had enough of saying the Cowboys would always break down and fall short whenever there was hope for the franchise are.
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“We just won,” Diggs said. “Stephen A., watch your mouth.”
This week, however, the Cowboys visit the 49ers on Sunday night (5:30, Fox). Not only is there a historic playoff rivalry between the franchises, San Francisco knocked Dallas out of the playoffs last year.
3) Player to watch: Devonta Smith
The Eagles wide receiver had career-high catches (95), yards (1,196) and touchdowns (seven) this season. Smith and AJ Brown were the only pair of teammates to each have 85+ catches and 1,100+ receiving yards this season.
Smith had touchdown receptions in two of his last three games against the Giants.
4) Watch coaches
The Giants’ Brian Daboll wants to become just the 15th rookie head coach since the 1970 merger to take his team to a conference championship game. Only one coach has done it in the last 10 years, Green Bay’s Matt Lafleur in 2019. Last week, Daboll became the Giants’ first head coach to win the postseason debut since Dan Reeves in 1993.
Of course, Daboll was the Hurts’ offensive coordinator for a season in Alabama.
In addition, former Crimson Tide linebacker DeMeco Ryans is the defensive coordinator for the San Francisco 49ers.
5) History Hunt
With a touchdown reception, Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce will surpass Pro Football Hall of Famer John Stallworth (12 touchdown receptions) for the third most postseason touchdown receptions in NFL history. Jerry Rice holds the record with 22.
Born in Tuscaloosa, Stallowrth played for Alabama A&M before being selected in the 1974 fourth round by the Pittsburgh Steelers.
The Jaguars at Chiefs are set for 3:30 p.m. Saturday (NBC) and the Bengals at Bills are set for 2 p.m. Sunday (CBS).
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