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Conference Championships Feature Top Offenses in NFL

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The NFL Conference Championship Games will feature the best-of-the-best in one regard.

The top four teams in Points Earned are the four participants in the title games—the Packers, the Chiefs, the Bills, and the Buccaneers. It’s the first time in the five years in which SIS has calculated Total Points Earned that the top four teams in this stat all made it this deep into the playoffs.

The Packers scored more points than any team in the NFL. They didn't have any leaders in Points Earned at the skill positions, but had someone in the top five at each of them. Quarterback Aaron Rodgers ranked fifth at that position and first in Points Earned on a per-play basis. Aaron Jones ranked fifth at running back and DaVante Adams finished fourth at wide receiver. The Packers as a team also ranked second in team pass blocking total points

The two teams still remaining that made big jumps from last season were the Buccaneers (21st in offense Points Earned in 2019) and the Bills (22nd). In Tampa Bay’s case, that can be largely attributed to the acquisition of Tom Brady who replaced Jameis Winston as the team’s starting quarterback.

Brady quelled any doubts about whether he still had anything left, finishing third in Points Earned among quarterbacks in the regular season behind only Deshaun Watson and Patrick Mahomes. Brady finished two spots ahead of his counterpart in the conference title game, Rodgers.

The Bills fortunes are a product of the growth of quarterback Josh Allen and a trade with the Vikings to get wide receiver Stefon Diggs. Allen ranked fourth in Points Earned among quarterbacks in 2020 after ranking 21st in 2019. Diggs led the NFL in receptions (127) and receiving yards (1,535), and led all wide receivers in Points Earned as well. He ranked 28th in Points Earned in 2019.

In terms of defense Points Saved, the teams rank thusly: Buccaneers (1st), Bills (9th), Packers (16th) and Chiefs (22nd). The Buccaneers ranked No. 1 based on the combination of their run defense (they ranked 4th in Points Saved against runs) and pass rush (2nd). Tampa Bay was one of four teams to have multiple players with at least nine sacks this season (Jason Pierre-Paul and Devin White). Their run defense allowed the fewest yards per attempt (3.6) in the league.

Defense is a concern for the Chiefs, though the Chiefs allowed only 17 points to the Browns in the Divisional Round, the second time in three games in which they allowed fewer than 20 points. Mahomes' concussion also looms as an issue, though backup Chad Henne came up with a couple of key plays late in last week's win.

If you believe the game is going to come down to the team best able to get stops against these powerful offenses, you probably lean to a Tampa Bay-Buffalo Super Bowl matchup. If you think its going to come down to the offenses making plays, Green Bay-Kansas City may be your pick. We look forward to watching how it plays out.

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