A Ravens-Chargers AFC title game isn’t as crazy as it sounds

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While contemplating the AFC playoff field during Thursday’s PFT Live, a crazy thought that may not be all that crazy occurred to me: What if the presumed AFC Championship showdown between the Steelers and Patriots were disrupted not by one team losing in the divisional round but by both losing in the conference semifinals?

Indulge me for a moment here. (Or don’t; it’s not going to stop me.) Let’s assume the following AFC playoff seeding: 1. Patriots; 2. Steelers; 3. Titans/Jaguars; 4. Chargers; 5. Jaguars/Titans; 6. Ravens.

In the wild-card round, the Ravens would need to win on the road against the AFC South champion, and the Chargers would have to win at home against the AFC South wild-card qualifier. Then, the sixth-seeded Ravens would go to New England, where the Ravens always play better than expected — and have won multiple times in the playoffs. The Chargers would go to Pittsburgh, to face a Steelers team that is playing like it has one eye on the Patriots.

So if the Ravens beat the Patriots and the Chargers beat the Steelers, the AFC Championship would be played in a stadium smaller than the places where every major college program in America plays its home games. It’s a fascinating possibility, and it’s hard not to wonder whether the game would be moved to the L.A. Coliseum (unless, of course, the Rams end up hosting the NFC Championship game).

However it plays out, crazier things have happened than what would be an unlikely but hardly crazy outcome to the AFC playoff tree.

37 responses to “A Ravens-Chargers AFC title game isn’t as crazy as it sounds

  1. I really want to see the Chargers make it in the playoffs and go deep. It would really make me LOL if a team that started 0-4 would end up knocking out either the Pats or the Steelers in the playoffs. Plus Rivers’ time is ticking to get a Super Bowl ring and he has been a class act and effective QB his entire career.

  2. lock it up, ladies

    we know everyone fears us… makes us yawn every year #CHAMPS

  3. Zero chance because the NFL has become as rigged as the NBA now in regards to ratings match ups. That is all they care about. Never again will there be a Superbowl with a surprise wild card team unless it is the Packers with Rodgers getting there. Plus goodell would never in his life let his precious patriots led by his undercover best friend Kraft lose before the AFC title game

  4. Ravens could potentially go deeper into the playoffs if Flacco plays like last week. However the Chargers concern me due to their pass rushing duo of Bosa and Ingram plus their high powered offense. Pats vs Chargers would be something I’d live to see in the title game.

  5. Pump the brakes on the Ravens… they played one good game all year (last weekend) and now they’re going to the Super Bowl?

  6. Then, the sixth-seeded Ravens would go to New England, where the Ravens always play better than expected
    A lot of people think it’s 2012 for some reason 🙂 The Ravens are 0-3 against the Patriots in the last 3 7/8ths seasons. Patriots have also averaged 35 points a game in that stretch.

    They are NOT winning a playoff game in NE.

  7. Big Ravens fan here, no chance this happens this year.
    It’s true the 2000 Ravens were 5-4 and couldn’t score a touchdown and everyone joked about how Matt Stover was the entire offense and then the D locked in and they ran the table.
    But this team does not have that defense, and also does not have Jamal Lewis running behind Jonathan Ogden to compensate for the atrocious Trent Dilfer and Travis Taylor.
    I see the Ravens as a plucky close-but-no-cigar one and done in the postseason this year.

  8. Not gonna happen. The Patriots will be in the AFCC game and will win it. See you in Minny.

  9. Everyone is already giving the AFCWest to the Chargers, but it’s a long way from over out there, and they are perfectly capable of blowing it in the end.

    As for NE vs Pittsburgh,. neither team has clinched anything yet, there is a long way to go, and injuries always play a role.

  10. Chargers ain’t going anywhere until they start scoring touchdowns instead of field goals. They go up and down the field all day and just attempt field goals. Need better redzone playcalling and execution.

  11. herealjr says:
    December 7, 2017 at 4:25 pm
    Psst…you know Joe Flacco is the Ravens QB, right?-

    Exactly why it could happen : : January Joe missed entire preseason and is only now rounding into shape and form … let’s see after the battle with the Steelers on Sunday

  12. When January Joe turns it on, he’s very hard to beat. The question is, is there any January Joe left? I hope so.

  13. And let me guess, you have the winner of chargers-ravens facing the winner of GB-Dal in the SB.

  14. The last time the Ravens beat the Patriots in Foxboro, Ray Lewis, was in the middle of that defense and Ed Reed was a Patriots killer (ask BB). They played out of their minds, and Anquan Bolden just assassinated the Patriots secondary.


    Flacco is playing like a 60K radial tires with 59K miles on them.

  15. Chunk Life says:
    December 7, 2017 at 5:01 pm
    Pump the brakes on the Ravens… they played one good game all year (last weekend) and now they’re going to the Super Bowl?

    And that “good game” was against the lowly Lions! Meanwhile they have lost to every decent team they’ve played this year, and even managed to lose to Da Bears.

    Lets see how they fare against the Steelers this weekend, eh?

  16. I normally don’t share the same opinions as Mr Florio, but man you read my mind. Ravens-Chargers it will be.

  17. All this theorizing means nothing. The few remaining Charger fans are hanging their hats on wishful thinking and what if’s. The Chiefs and Raiders will have something to say about all this. And, don’t get excited about a possible “home” game. The Chargers have no “home” and actually play better away from “home” which is not their “home” because they have no “home.”
    They’re sort of gypsies right now as only a trickle of Charger fans go see them at the soccer field.

  18. The last time the AFCCG didn’t have a 1st or 2nd seed in it was 11 years ago in 2006. Patriots vs Colts. Funny thing is they beat out the seeds… Ravens and the Chargers.

  19. Chargers can easily make the playoffs at this point – they simply need to continue what they have been consistently doing. that 0-4 start had 3 very close games that could have gone either way, and 1 legitimate beating. Most of their wins have been blowouts.
    I dont know how deep they will go, but I do believe they will win the west and represent LA with Pride!

  20. The interesting storyline to me is not about the Chargers’ chances of making it to the Super Bowl (which seems unlikely) – it’s about the fact that they “might” make the playoffs after an 0-4 start – with few LOCAL fans rooting for them.

    L.A. didn’t want this team, hasn’t embraced them – and San Diego fans who are still rooting for them have very mixed feelings. The Chargers play their “home” games in a 25,000 seat soccer stadium – which has been overrun each week by fans rooting against them. To me – they seem like the only team in the NFL that will have played 16 “road” games in a row.

    I wonder if part of their success mentally – is the fact that they must prepare every week – to go to a silent count on offensive snaps because of crowd noise against them. A very weird story. A team that can sometimes look scary – has a chance to make the playoffs, without a true fan base rooting for them, week in and week out.

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