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NFL Playoff Schedule: Patriots rooting guide for wild card weekend

The Steelers, Texans, Raiders, and Dolphins will play while the Patriots and Chiefs rest.

The New England Patriots are kicking up their feet and eating nachos on the couch for Wild Card Weekend, while they await to see their Divisional Round opponent. The Kansas City Chiefs, Dallas Cowboys, and Atlanta Falcons are also hanging out.

This weekend features one great game between the Giants and Packers, two possibly good games with the Lions and Seahawks, and the Dolphins at Steelers, and one definitely horrible game between the Raiders and Texans.

Here is the schedule and the Patriots rooting guide.

Saturday, January 7th

4:35 PM EST on ESPN/ABC: Oakland Raiders at Houston Texans

The Texans have a better defense, while the Raiders have more talent on offense. Oakland will be starting a third-string rookie quarterback, although the Patriots can empathize. Rookie QB Jacoby Brissett took down the Texans 27-0 back in week 3.

The Raiders have pass rusher Khalil Mack and a great offensive line, so the Patriots would probably rather have the Texans come to Foxborough for the divisional round over the Raiders, quarterback problems and all.

8:15 PM EST on NBC: Detroit Lions at Seattle Seahawks

The Lions are on a three-game losing streak and aren’t really given a chance to win this. While the Patriots would love to see the Seahawks eliminated, Seattle is probably better able to knock off the Falcons than the Lions are against the Cowboys. The Patriots will pull for the Seahawks and their suddenly problematic defense.

Sunday, January 8th

1:05 PM EST on CBS: Miami Dolphins at Pittsburgh Steelers

The Patriots have beaten both teams this year, but they want the Steelers to win. A Dolphins victory gives the Chiefs a cakewalk against either the Texans or Raiders; a Steelers win sets up a Divisional Round showdown with Pittsburgh and Kansas City, while the Patriots get the cakewalk.

4:40 PM EST on FOX: New York Giants at Green Bay Packers

The Patriots would be thrilled to see the Giants eliminated. New York has the NFL’s 2nd ranked defense by DVOA and points allowed per drive and represent the only other great defense in the playoffs. The Texans, Chiefs, and Seahawks are in the next tier, while the others are just average (Steelers, Cowboys, Dolphins), or bad (Raiders, Lions, Falcons, Packers).