Saturday, January 9, 2010

Second Round of the NFL Playoffs

Well, barring an epic collapse by the Cowboys1, it looks like I correctly predicted both games on Saturday. Because telecasters are so terrible, this basically makes me the most intelligent man ever. Knowing this, I am DEMANDING you to read these.

Ravens at Patriots-

You ready for my upset special? Here it is. In these teams’ only meeting, Mark Clayton had a huge fourth down drop inside the Patriots ten within the last two minutes that lost the game. That will be the same kind of game it is. Whoever makes the fewest mistakes will win the game.

New England’s biggest question mark will be how they replace slot receiver Wes Welker. They need some way to keep defenses honest against Randy Moss’ deep threat, but I don’t see how they can do that. Former Patriot Teddy Bruschi, who is now an analyst for ESPN, said that he thought that they could use the running game. My issue is that New England has never been a great rushing team, and I don’t see that changing.

The problem the Patriots have is the exact success of the Ravens. If it wasn’t for Chris Johnson’s record season, people would be talking about what a season Ray Rice has had. With over 1300 rushing yards and 700 receiving yards, you could argue the Rice is the best dual threat in the NFL. In the game against New England, Rice had over 100 yards on just 11 attempts (with another 49 receiving yards)! Why they didn’t give him the ball every down is a mystery to me. This week, they will do just that. Expect 200 all-purpose yards from Rice as the Ravens pick up the upset in a squeaker.

Prediction: Ravens 24-23

Packers at Cardinals-

I’m not going to lie to you, I haven’t seen Arizona play all year. The closest thing I have seen to Cardinal football is the Fiesta Bowl played in their stadium. Lucky for me, I didn’t need to see them to know they are going to get beat down here.

In the beginning of the season, Aaron Rodgers was on his back more than the village whore. However, his offensive line has improved significantly and is the biggest factor in the surge the Packers have been on. When protected, Rodgers is one of the top quarterbacks, behind only Manning, Brees, and Brady. That is right, that means that in my mind, Rodgers has already surpassed Brett Favre, the guy who people in Green Bay hated Rodgers for replacing. Rodgers will go crazy on a terrible pass defense and will replicate last week’s numbers. Arizona does have a good offense, but not near the level of the Packers.

Prediction: Packers 35-24

1. I will gladly sacrifice my 2-0 record in the playoffs to see this happen. I still remember where I was when the Cowboys blew the playoff game against the Seahawks, I was at a sports bar with Austin because we had tagged along with his dad Doc Walker. I was scared stiff of the man, but we enjoyed watching Romo cry after botching the snap on the would be game- winning field goal.

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