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Wolverines Playing In NFL Playoffs On Sunday

Michigan has been well represented throughout the NFL Playoffs this year and a few more former Wolverines will take the field later today.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Los Angeles Rams

Buccaneers

QB Tom Brady

I'm sure most of you have heard of this Brady guy by now, but if you haven't, he's pretty good. 

The 44-year old GOAT is chasing Super Bowl title No. 8 and will do so against another quarterback most Michigan fans fare very familiar with in Matthew Stafford. Brady led the NFL this year in passing yards and touchdowns, which is truly remarkable at his age. He and his Bucs will be hosting the Rams today and are favored but only by three points. Brady doesn't have the weapons he'd like to have with Chris Godwin out and Antonio Brown out of his mind, but he still has his trusty tight end Rob Gronkowski and wide receiver Mike Evans. 

Most people aren't giving Stafford and his teammates much of a chance against the best to ever do it, but the Rams are extremely talented on both sides of the ball. It's hard to pick against the Rams, but I've learned you should never bet against Brady in the postseason. 

Rams

CB David Long Jr.

Most people around the country probably didn't know much about Long until he recorded a three-yard pick-six last week against Kyler Murray and the Cardinals in the Wild Card round, but Michigan fans obviously did. Long also had a tackle in the game, but his claim to fame will always be having the shortest pick-six in NFL postseason history according to ESPN Stats and Info.

Long isn't an every-down player for the Rams, but he gets a decent amount of run. Last week's pick-six was his second interception of the season and he's accumulated 40 tackles on the year. Tampa doesn't have its full compliment of receivers, but Brady can make any cornerback's day difficult. Long will definitely have to be ready to roll.

Kansas City Chiefs vs. Buffalo Bills

Chiefs

QB Chad Henne

Yes, Henne is still in the league. Obviously as Patrick Mahomes' backup, Henne doesn't see the field much these days, but he's been one of the most steady and reliable backup quarterbacks to ever strap on a helmet. He's now in year 12 and has always been there in a pinch. Whether he's starting, riding pine or coming in when the everyday starter goes down, Henne has been the consummate professional. He's only played in four games this year and threw a pass in just one of them. In that game, though, he went 11-for-16 for 82 yards.

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Don't expect to see much of Henne against the Bills, but if you do see him, he'll be ready.

DE Frank Clark

Clark really developed into one of the premier pass rushers in the NFL over the course of his 7-year career. His numbers are a little down this year as he sits on 4.5 sacks, but he's still someone opposing quarterbacks need to account for. His high-water mark was 13 sacks back in 2018 when he was still with the Seattle Seahawks. 

DE Mike Danna

Danna is a borrowed Wolverine as someone who spent his undergraduate years at Central Michigan, but U-M fans will proudly claim him as he's turned into a very serviceable backup pass rusher for the Kansas City Chiefs. Danna has three sacks on the season and, just like at Michigan, always goes extremely hard. If you focus on him whenever he's on the field, you can see that same relentless motor and athleticism that allowed him to earn a lot of playing time and rack up three sacks during his one season at Michigan after spending the first four in the MAC. 

The Detroit native will rotate in and out with Clark and others up front for KC with the hopes of getting to the big, strong, fast and elusive Josh Allen of the Bills.

Bills

There are no former Wolverines on the roster for the Bills, so I guess Michigan fans are Chiefs fans today.


Chris Evans of the Cincinnati Bengals are still alive after defeating Taylor Lewan and the Tennessee Titans, as are Mo Hurst, Ambry Thomas and Jarrod Wilson of the San Francisco 49ers are defeating Jon Runyan Jr. and Rashan Gary of the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau.