Super Bowl XLVIII Predictions: Who Will Play for the Lombardi Trophy?

Predicting the Future: Who Will Play In Super Bowl XLVIII?

9/7/13 in NFL   |   BlakeLovell   |   86 respect

The first full weekend of the 2013 NFL season is about ready to get underway, which means it's time to throw predictions all over the place and hope some of them turn out to be right.

Of course, the biggest prediction of all is taking a guess at who will play in the Super Bowl at MetLife Stadium in February. 

So, after many hours of research and deliberation, it has been made official (at least in my mind) that the following two teams will play in Super Bowl XLVIII:

AFC Representative: Denver Broncos

Sep 5, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (18) on the sidelines during the second half against the Baltimore Ravens at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY SportsIt will be hard to convince anyone that the Broncos were indeed my pick prior to their thrashing of the defending Super Bowl champion Baltimore Ravens. But they were. Pinkie promise.

There are plenty of reasons to pick the Broncos as the team that will represent the AFC in Super Bowl. 

For starters, seven touchdowns through the air from Peyton Manning didn't hurt my confidence in the pick one bit. Whatever questions we had in terms of how many good years he had left after the neck injury have been pushed to the back burner. One thing we've learned over the years is never to doubt Peyton Manning. The guy seems almost superhuman at times, and there's no reason to believe that he won't be in the NFL MVP race this season. He'll probably set a record or two along the way as well.

Another reason why the Broncos are the best pick is because of their division. They essentially have six guaranteed wins on the schedule within the division, because the fact of the matter is, the rest of the teams aren't gonna be very good. The Chargers are in total rebuild mode, the Chiefs will get better under Andy Reid but aren't quite there yet, and the Raiders will likely have the first overall pick in the 2014 NFL Draft. Barring a monumental injury, Denver wins this division with ease.

Now, if you look at the rest of their schedule, there are a few concerns. Almost every game they play outside of the division will be a battle. Sure, that's always the case when you're on the road in the NFL. But here's who the Broncos will play away from Mile High this season: Giants, Cowboys, Colts, Patriots, and Texans. None of those games are a lock by any means.

However, the positive is that these games will give them plenty of tests heading into the playoffs, and that's why they'll emerge as AFC champions in January.

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