Chance of rain
If the title drought is going to be broken, this team has perhaps the best chance of bringing home a title.
Eagle's Landing Christian
The Chargers capped their first unbeaten season with a Region 5-A championship. With three seniors expected to sign scholarships with Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly I-A) schools, ELCA has just as much talent as any other Class A school. ELCA is one of the highest scoring teams in the state with running backs Keyante Green and John Tatum helping the Chargers average 43 points per game. Defensively, ELCA is giving up only seven points a contest.
Barometer: This team is playing with a lot of confidence, especially after its win at previous No. 2 Wesleyan. They seem to be a cohesive group with no one player seeking all the glory. ELCA's half of the bracket includes Clinch County, Miller County, ECI and Wilkinson County.
This team has a good shot at making a long run, but the Class AAAA field is crowded with several talented and experienced teams.
This senior class has paid its dues and many are making the playoffs for the first time since seeing limited duty as freshmen.
With about eight players holding scholarship offers, the talent is definitely there to make a run at it. The team is very limited in its playoff experience, but could benefit from a couple early round home games.
Barometer: The Wildcats first opponent has not won a first round state playoff game since 1985. Lovejoy is in the bottom half of the Class AAAA bracket which includes Thomas County Central, Chattahoochee and Marist while the top half of the bracket includes Statesboro, Griffin, Kell and Southwest DeKalb.
Winning a game or two is not out of reach for these teams, but the forecast isn't encouraging.
After starting out 1-3, not many gave the Warhawks a chance at making the postseason in a tough Region 4-AAA race. However, Henry County bounced back and was one loss away from hosting a first round game. The Warhawks have made the playoffs each of the past four seasons.
Barometer: Baldwin's only loss this season was by 20 to top-ranked and undefeated Peach County. The Braves have made the playoff six of the last seven years. This side of the bracket includes Gainesville, Carrollton, Cairo and St. Pius X.
The loss of leading rusher LaDarrius Mathis has not been as severe as some would have thought. Senior Michael Ross has picked up a lot of the slack. The defense is solid with linebacker Amarlo Herrera and defensive end Jack Edem. North Clayton has won 10 games each of the last two seasons under coach Rodney Hackney. One more win will give them a third straight, which has never been accomplished by a Clayton County school.
Barometer: The Eagles have plenty of playoff experience over the last two years. Ware County has an impressive resume, which includes a win over Class AAAAA playoff team Coffee and a three-point loss to powerhouse Lowndes. North Clayton's half of the playoff bracket includes top-ranked Northside-Warner Robins, Tucker, Clarke Central and Starr's Mill.
Sunny and bright
These two teams are new to the state playoff experience. With tough first round games on the road, they are not being counted to make a run.
Stockbridge: Coach Kevin Whitley left a comfortable situation at Creekside, which annually made the postseason, to build the Stockbridge program. He seems to have it headed in the right direction in his second year as the Tigers will make their first ever state playoff appearance. Quarterback Leon Prunty seems to have a handle on Whitley's triple option offensive attack.
Barometer: The Tigers will get a good taste of the playoff experience when they travel to Fort Valley to take on defending champion Peach County, which is on a 25-game win streak. Only three opponents have scored in double figures against the Trojans.
Dutchtown: After seven years of existence, the Bulldogs finally earned a playoff spot. Dutchtown nearly pulled an upset of ranked Griffin a couple weeks ago before falling 10-6 at home. A ball-control offense and a stingy defense has been the key to the Bulldogs success this season.
Barometer: The Bulldogs must travel to Thomasville to take on playoff powerhouse Thomas County Central, which has lost once in the first round of the playoffs in its last five appearances.