Predicting the playoffs: Chargers at Broncos

Predicting the playoffs: Chargers at Broncos
January 11, 2014, 12:45 pm
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Tandler - Tarik

Although the Redskins are spectators in this year’s NFL playoffs, we know you’ll still be watching. So let’s have some fun predicting the outcomes, shall we? Here’s how Redskins Insiders Tarik El-Bashir and Rich Tandler see the games unfolding:

Chargers at Broncos
Sunday 4:40, CBS
Broncos favored by 10

Tandler: Last year Peyton Manning’s march to the Super Bowl ended when the top-seeded Broncos slipped on a purple banana peel and were stunned by the Ravens. Again a team that nobody believes has a chance of winning comes into Sports Authority Stadium. The Chargers needed a couple of questionable calls by the officials to get into the playoffs. Could the Broncos slip up again? No, this time Goliath beats David. Manning isn’t about to let them lose in the first round again. Broncos 31, Chargers 14

[RELATED: Tandler and Tarik make their predictions for 49ers at Panthers.]

El-Bashir: Manning and the top-seeded Broncos are supposed to win this game, and they’re supposed to do it by a lot. Manning’s postseason legacy, some say, is on the line and they point to his 9-11 playoff record as the reason. I totally agree. I also can’t shake the feeling that there’s a good chance Phillip Rivers and the Cinderella Chargers do the improbable—again—at Mile High. San Diego has claimed victory in four of their last five trips to Denver, including a 27-20 win on Dec. 12. And, oh yeah, Chargers’ coach Mike McCoy was the Broncos’ offensive coordinator from 2009-2012. So, if anyone’s got the book on the Broncos' personnel, it’s him. Again, it’s just a hunch. But I’m calling for a memorable upset here. Chargers 28, Broncos 27.