Predictions through the looking glass

Story by Kris Kotlarik

Non-Packers fans, it’s time to accept what has been known for some time: The Packers will win the Super Bowl, and will probably go undefeated in the process.

And somewhere in Miami, Don Shula, coach of the undefeated 1972 Miami Dolphins, is tearing out what remains of his gray hair.

The Packers don’t play anyone of note in their remaining three games. Two of the three teams on Green Bay’s schedule are missing their starting quarterback and running back, and the other (Detroit) already lost handily to the Green & Gold in their own stadium.

Not even Greg Jennings’ knee injury, which will keep him out for the remainder of the regular season, can slow this team down. If anything, Jermichael Finley is now poised to go absolutely bonkers in the final three games of the season before the playoffs arrive (I hope you’re paying attention, fantasy footballers).

As for the NFC playoffs, the only current playoff contenders Green Bay hasn’t beaten yet are San Francisco and Dallas. I don’t see either team as a threat to Green Bay, especially given that if they face the Packers, it will be played at Lambeau Field in January.

No, the much more interesting question at this point is who will be coming out of the significantly more contentious AFC to face (and lose to) Green Bay in the Super Bowl.

My official pick is going to be Pittsburgh. I know – reruns are really boring. Just ask 99 percent of the country about their opinions on the LSU-Alabama rematch. But Pittsburgh has the experience and the consistency to make a deep run at the playoffs, and would at least make the Super Bowl interesting.

I really want to see Houston make the Super Bowl, so I’m making them my official dark horse pick. Playing without some combination of Arian Foster, Andre Johnson and Matt Schaub (who will not be returning this year) for most of the season, they’ve still found a way to reach a four-way tie for the conference’s best record (10-3).

Sure, they’ll probably lose early in the playoffs because it’s their first appearance. Well, that and the fact that they’re starting a third-string rookie quarterback. But they have heart, which brings me to the team I want to see reach the Super Bowl for my own convoluted and slightly evil reasons.

All I want from the NFL is a Denver-Green Bay matchup in the Super Bowl. For starters, I am completely certain that the Broncos would get absolutely destroyed by Green Bay again. In Week Four, Denver traveled to Green Bay and lost 49-23.

But this is where the fun begins. The legion of Tim Tebow supporters are probably giving my mug shot the death glare right now. They might be saying that Tebow didn’t play in that game, so the outcome of a possible rematch could be completely different.

And that’s true. Since then, Tebow has taken the reigns of the Broncos, who have won seven of their last eight games, including six straight. Casting aside the religious beliefs and the fact that the Broncos’ offense now resembles that of a high school team, the media’s treatment of Tim Tebow is basically the Casey Anthony trial in football form. It’s a circus.

So let’s look at some facts. Of those seven wins Tebow quarterbacked for the Broncos, only one (a 17-13 win against the 8-5 Jets) qualifies as a legitimate contender. The rest came against terrible AFC West squads, the woeful Vikings, the Cutler-and-Forteless Bears, and the Dolphins.

Somehow, Tebow is getting all the credit and praise from the media. What about Matt Prater, the Broncos kicker who nailed two 50+ yard field goals to win last week’s game against the Bears? And is the media forgetting the fact that Denver’s defense is pretty much the only reason Tebow has been able to get credited for these wins in the first place.

Tebow has a 38.3 completion percentage in the first three quarters of NFL games this season. That should be all you need to know about how a Super Bowl rematch between Denver and Green Bay would play out.

No amount of fourth quarter clutchity (add that one to the dictionary) would be able to recover from those horrid numbers against a team like this year’s Packers squad. And with any luck, this Tebow fad shall pass.