The 10 reasons why you can't miss NFL playoffs

The Bills playing for Damar Hamlin, Dallas’ defense is aggressive, Justin Jefferson and Nick Bosa are out to make their mark… and it could be Tom Brady’s last dance: 10 reasons why you can’t miss the NFL playoffs

  • The playoffs begin this weekend and there are plenty of compelling storylines
  • Up to seven QBs could make their postseason debuts across the league
  • While it could be the last ride for the 45-year-old Bucs quarterback Tom Brady
  • The Giants and Bills will also be looking to end long playoff win droughts
  • Click here for all your latest international Sports news from DailyMail.com

The NFL playoffs begin this Saturday, and whether or not your team is still alive, it should be a thrilling postseason.

From MVP-level players like Josh Allen and Patrick Mahomes to playoff debutants, there will be plenty to watch out for as the 14 remaining teams vie for the Lombardi Trophy.

Here, Dailymail.com takes you through the 10 reasons why you should be tuned into this NFL postseason.

There will be plenty to watch out for as the 14 remaining teams vie for the Lombardi Trophy

This postseason will have lots of new blood under center, due to both progression and injuries.

Young quarterbacks Daniel Jones, Justin Herbert and Trevor Lawrence will each make their first postseason starts after leading the Giants, Chargers and Jaguars to the postseason respectively.

But that’s not it.

Geno Smith has enjoyed a career revival for the 9-8 Seahawks, Tyler Huntley will start his first playoff game due to Lamar Jackson being hurt, and Skylar Thompson looks set to fill in for Tua Tagovailoa (and Teddy Bridgewater) for Miami.

With the 49ers’ seventh-round revelation (13 touchdowns, four interceptions) Brock Purdy set to start as well, half of the 14 playoff teams could be entrusting a playoff debutant this weekend. 

Justin Herbert is one of many quarterbacks set to make his postseason debut this weekend

Bills trying to win it all for Damar Hamlin

Buffalo’s first play following Damar Hamlin’s cardiac arrest was a memorable one. 

Nyhiem Hines took the opening kickoff 96 yards for a touchdown in front of the home fans last weekend as the Bills beat the Patriots 35-23.

While Hamlin – who has since been removed from the hospital – won’t be on the field this postseason, the tributes to him will surely remain around Buffalo.

What a story it would be if the Bills can win their first-ever Super Bowl in honor of their teammate.

The Bills were the favorites to go all the way before the season began and they’re well placed to do just that. 

Damar Hamlin will remain in the Bills’ thoughts as they embark on their postseason journey

Hamlin has been released from the hospital in Buffalo after his cardiac arrest last week

Justin Jefferson tries to make a playoff impression

We already know what Justin Jefferson can do.

We just haven’t – through no fault of his own – seen it this late in the calendar yet.

Jefferson led the league with 1,809 receiving yards this season – with eight touchdowns to boot – but has just five catches combined in his last two games.

He’ll look to get back on track this Sunday in his playoff debut vs. the Giants, who he torched for 133 yards and a touchdown in Week 16.

Justin Jefferson led the NFL in receiving yards this season with the Minnesota Vikings

Nick Bosa looks to build postseason legacy on defense

While Jefferson will draw eyeballs on offense, Bosa will do the same on defense.

Bosa led the league with 18.5 sacks this season, and he’s got eight sacks in six previous playoff appearances as well.

With that postseason pedigree, a Super Bowl appearance and three Pro Bowl nods, Bosa is already established as one of the league’s best players.

Taking San Francisco another step further in a wide-open playoff picture, though, would bring him to even higher heights.

Nick Bosa already has postseason pedigree but will look to capture his first Super Bowl

Divisional rivalries rehashed

Speaking of the 49ers, they’ll be one of three teams facing a division rival in the wildcard round.

San Francisco will host the Seahawks in an NFC West matchup on Saturday, Miami will travel to Buffalo in an AFC East fight and the Bengals and Ravens will play for a second consecutive week after Cincy wrapped up the AFC North.

The Eagles could also see an NFC East foe in the divisional round if one of the Giants or Cowboys are the lowest seed remaining.

As if the playoffs needed any more intensity, dwellers of the same division will be playing each other for a third time this season.

There’s a lot of familiarity, and not a lot of warm feelings. 

The Bengals will host the Ravens again after beating them last week to clinch the AFC North

Tom Brady’s last dance?

For all of the new faces in this postseason, there’s also 45-year-old Tom Brady trying to capture his eighth Super Bowl ring.

If you’d forgotten he was in the postseason this year, we wouldn’t blame you.

He sneaked into the playoffs despite finishing with a losing record (8-9) as a starter for the first time in his career, and his 6.4 yards per attempt were the second-least in his career over a full season.

There’s been speculation this could be his last year playing.

And if that’s the case, surely he won’t go out with a whimper.

Tom Brady was not his best self this season but it’d be foolish to count him out in the playoffs

Dolphins and Giants trying to break playoff droughts

On the other side of the coin, the Giants and Dolphins are back in the playoffs and trying to notch their first playoff wins in a long time.

New York has not won a playoff game in 11 years, while the Dolphins haven’t completed the feat in 22 years.

The latter drought is the second-longest active one in the league, behind only the Lions who last won a playoff game in 1992.

However, it doesn’t look like Miami will end that rotten run this year, as they’ll be coming into Buffalo as massive underdogs with third-stringer Thompson under center.

Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley have helped NY to the playoffs for the first time since 2016

The aggressive Dallas defense 

The Cowboys’ defense ranked above average in points and yards allowed, but what really set it apart this regular season was their aggression.

No team had more takeaways than the Cowboys (33), who won 12 games with the help of Micah Parsons and Trevon Diggs on defense.

Parsons forced three fumbles this season to go along with 13.5 sacks, but the unit is far more than just him.

When a coordinator (Dan Quinn) is getting head coaching buzz, it usually means their group is doing something right, and this Dallas defense can provide the foundation for a deep playoff run.

The Cowboys led the league with 33 takeaways this season, as they went 12-5 on the year

A potential neutral site AFC Championship 

While the Super Bowl won’t happen until February 12, it’s possible the AFC championship game a couple weeks before will feel quite similar to the big game.

Due to the cancellation of the Week 17 Bengals-Bills game after Hamlin’s cardiac arrest, the NFL has changed certain rules in the interest of competitive balance, as the Bills were in control of the No. 1 seed before that game was called off.

Now, if the Bills and and Chiefs meet in the conference championship – and only those two teams – the game will be held at Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta, the NFL announced this week.

Two explosive offenses facing off in January without the elements has the potential to be an absolute track meet of a matchup, and an all-time classic.

Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs could play a neutral site AFC championship game vs. the Bills

Ultimately, the Lombardi trophy is on the line!

Of course, all of these storylines will conclude in February in Glendale, Arizona as one team is crowned champions of the 2022 season.

So who will it be?

Philadelphia Eagles star Jalen Hurts is not fully healthy, while there might not be many more pages left in Brock Purdy Cinderella story this season.

Eleven of the Vikings’ 13 wins came in one score games.  

That leaves the Bills and Chiefs as the strongest contenders with Buffalo having every chance of sealing that fairytale ending and snapping their long wait for the title.

Josh Allen will look to deliver the Bills their first Super Bowl title in the team’s existence

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