This was a season of suspense, a season describing longevity, and a team’s willpower.

We are witnesses of an insightful journey in a league that has paranoid our senses.

If you’re wondering why we suffered greatly and impatiently waited for the season-opener of a 16-game regular season in the NFL, well, you grasped the compelling mindset of intense, non-stop drama.

Isn’t this what we live and dream for, a dramatic year to magnetize our minds as our self-consciousness is corralled until the Super Bowl?

Despite a potential lookout in the 2011 season or merciless head collisions in which issues much of the year has been on concussions and how head injuries pose long-term health risks, fans were in for a year of money-worth football.

As sports depart a relentless age of sleazes casting shame in a league our society truly admires, an indelible season expunges a dreadful period of DUI criminals, dog-killers, and psychotic goons.

It doesn’t take long to cure a league, where rebellious players try to get away with despicable actions.

Whenever there’s a stern, narrow-minded commissioner willing to eliminate touchdown celebrations and constitute a conduct policy, much miscreant vanishes and mitigates tension.

Besides cracking down on mischievous megastars, the NFL excited us by the successive streak of the Indianapolis Colts, a franchise that almost reached a historic plateau.

On Bourbon Street, the New Orleans Saints intrigued the hearts of avid fans as the home team attempted the improbable of becoming NFL’s team to capture an historic milestone by finishing the entire season unbeaten.

Early on, the Denver Broncos were in conversations for its incredible streak, unbeaten before collapsing midway.

But now, it’s teams such as the New York Jets, Baltimore Ravens, and Green Bay Packers surprising us, as we sit back and relish an engaging postseason.

Any team can win the grandest prize on the biggest stage at this point. It’s impossible to ensure an ultimate champ, in what have the makings to be a fervid and elusive postseason.

There’s no telling if the Minnesota Vikings are worthy of flying to Miami, even though it possesses arguably the most weapons entering the playoffs.

There’s no telling if the shaky Saints are deserving of dancing in South Beach, after losing three consecutive games. And there’s no telling if the Colts may falter in the AFC Championship game if they meet the San Diego Chargers, the villains and hottest team playing in the playoffs.

Until further notice, we don’t know which team will dominate. It depends on the environment, weather conditions, and momentum.

Football is a sport of momentum, vital fundamentals required at a time winning is meaningful.

By the end of the first round, maybe it would be easier to forecast, but, until then, analyzing the likelihood of a franchise’s status is unpredictable.

Where tailgate parties reside in frigid climate, the Jets played their final game at Giants Stadium.

Amid a night of playoff ramifications, die-hard Jets’ fans renamed the venue, “FINAL GAME AT JETS STADIUM."

What turned into an exhilarating site, Rex Ryan’s mental toughness and inspiration paid off. Whether he’s portrayed as a sensitive moron or an ill-tempered coach, he has cultivated an adverse group.

As we all know, media outlets in New York are critical of underperforming sporting teams.

So clinching a playoff berth is huge for the Jets, a franchise that has coped with scrutiny and mediocrity. Sure enough, the Jets can beguile us all by advancing to the AFC Championship game.

There’s no need to place a hot team on the backburner when there’s Ryan, a head coach specialized in defense.

Don’t forget there’s a rookie quarterback by the name of Mark Sanchez, who was willing to take on a steep challenge by imploring the Jets to select him in last April’s draft.

Isn’t it fair to refer to him as Sanchize?

But, more so, credit the lethal defense for elevating the intensity level in the late weeks.

In a rematch against the inspirational Cincinnati Bengals, who they routed in a 37-0 win, the robust Jets will have to attempt to win two games in six days.

In general, I’m impressed with the tenacious defensive core.

On any given week, a forceful defense could spoil an opposing team’s optimism.

The NFL’s best defense happens to be the Jets, despite a 9-7 record that barely qualifies for a legitimate taste of the postseason.

Mind you, Darrelle Revis and Dwight Lowery are shutdown cornerbacks, with massive quickness and awareness. That hurts for an explosive wideout as proficient as Chad Ochocinco, when these two teams meet again for a significant matchup.

The Bengals are practically ailing in the receiver core, and Ochocinco nursing a sore knee is a concern when prolific quarterback Carson Palmer could use his primary target to exploit an unparalleled style.

Either way you view it, the best team, the scariest team, and the team nobody wishes to play is the Chargers.

Turns out, they are the Super Chargers, exposing a titillating outlook that defies logic with the ability to move the ball efficiently on the ground.

LaDainian Tomlinson is a decisive factor in the Chargers' chase for a potential Super Bowl appearance, as is a sturdy Philip Rivers. Late in the season, coach Norv Turner has relied on the transition of Rivers’ passing game.

His powerful throws are significant, if the Chargers expect to pass the test of wills, which includes advancing to the Super Bowl.

In recent weeks, the masses have anointed San Diego and have given them the edge.

If so, tight end Antonio Gates must play a large role. To be honest, he has been, by far, the most productive star in the receiver core and amassed 79 catches for 1,457 yards.

Near the goal line, Tomlinson is lightning-fast and is not to be reckoned with.

He has 12 touchdowns and isn’t easy to slow down inside the 20.

Doesn’t it remind you of Ravens’ running back Ray Rice?

There’s no doubt he’s the difference maker in an entertaining offense.

The arrival of offensive coordinator Cam Cameron has improved the Ravens' offense mightily, offsetting the mechanics of a typical 3-4 defense. His offensive recipe is designed to force the 3-4 into a nickel or dime formation, making life easier for the running game to explode.

No wonder why Rice is the biggest star in an emerging offense, discarding all of the weaknesses.

He’s the most entertaining and dangerous runner in the AFC, lethal with a remarkable 1,338 yards and a 5.3-yard average.

This should be enough to put a scare on the faces of New England.

Yes, Bill Belichick and the Patriots are well-experienced, but they’re deteriorating before our very eyes.

After losing all the veteran leaders, the Patriots are amid a rebuilding stage and dealing with road woes.

Wipe away an effortless win at a neutral site in London, and the Patriots would’ve officially been 1-6 on the road this season.

Because they’ve much mystique and dominated in the prior decade, the Pats aren’t forgotten just yet.

Then again, they might be out of the picture for good. The last thing New England needed was a severe injury to change the complexion, especially when it involves a speedy receiver.

Wes Welker, a primary target and dynamic weapon in the Patriots' offense, sustained a left knee injury. It’s believed to be a torn ACL and MCL.

That could cost New England a trip to Miami. He was a receiver the Pats relied on heavily in what appeared to be Welker’s breakout season.

He led the league with 123 catches for 1,348 yards and four touchdowns, but Belichick is now forced to rely on a temperamental Randy Moss, who not long ago, created a disruption when many acknowledged he had quit on his team.

Good luck, facing a tough-minded Baltimore defense.

Seems menacing safety Ed Reed is healthy enough to disrupt and frustrate Tom Brady in the first round of the postseason. This season, Reed was sidelined for four games with a groin injury, but his presence intimidates any team's offensive style.

There’s also the hard-hitting Ray Lewis, the veteran linebacker, who applies unsympathetic knockouts.

Let’s not leave out the Dallas Cowboys, a franchise where owner Jerry Jones earned his money inside a new and colossal venue.

For once, Dallas avoided derision and further doom in December.

For the rematch, the Cowboys will face the Philadelphia Eagles next Saturday. For the longest time, they were fragile in December and failed to vanquish letdowns.

Still, it’s a much-scrutinized franchise until capturing its first playoff victory.

After escaping T.O. drama and Tony Romo dumped Jessica Simpson to leave alone the celeb lifestyle and focus on upgrading his style in football, the Cowboys started performing at a high level.

Wade Phillips is delighted and confident he has salvaged his job status by winning a playoff game.

Like anything else, we try our hardest on guessing which team will survive the next few weeks leading up to the Super Bowl.

Did you know nothing is guaranteed?

How about you just watch and see what happens.

After all, it’s the NFL where drama lives.


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