Saturday, January 10

NFL Picks: Divisional Round

After an entertaining first weekend of games, we're on to the Divisional Playoff round, where the real heavyweights await their challengers.

Last Week
Andy: 1-3
Figgs: 2-2
Nick: 3-1
Nick's Money Picks: 2-1

Saturday Games

RAVENS (+3) vs. Titans
Andy: This reminds me of last week's ATL-AZ game, with a hot team that everyone likes coming in on the road, in this case Baltimore, and a team that people cooled on after a hot start, here Tennessee. The Ravens have played very well, but Tennessee is no slouch either. I like the Titans in this.
Figgs: I think this is kind of a toss up. If that's ever the case in a Ravens game, then the deciding factor is my hatred for them. Plus, Eddie was a Titan.
Nick: These two teams are basically clones, but the Titans are at home, rested, and undervalued. This team won 13 games during the regular season! (And that includes laying down against the Colts in week 16.) You know how many rookie QBs have won consecutive road playoff games? Zero. And the overwhelming majority of gamblers are taking Baltimore? Sign me up. Titans.

CARDINALS (+10) vs. Panthers
Andy: I like Carolina to win, but not by that many. If Arizona was playing in New York, well, that'd be a different story.
Figgs: Panthers definitely win, but 10 is a big number in a playoff game. Tough call, Carolina.
Nick: Panthers (-9.5). The Cardinals were the worst team outside of the Dolphins to get into the playoffs, and Carolina's going to torch them. Plus, it's going to rain in Charlotte. Panthers comfortably.

Sunday Games

GIANTS (-4) vs. Eagles
Andy: The Philly bandwagon ends here, and very abruptly.
Figgs: Giants in the lock of the playoffs.
Nick: Giants. Philadelphia could have easily lost last week in Minnesota if Tarvaris Jackson had been merely mediocre. The Giants are my pick to repeat, and with a healthy Brandon Jacobs, they start this week.

STEELERS (-6) vs. Chargers
Andy: The hardest one on the board for me to pick. I'm just still not sold enough on SD to take them here, even though I would love to see them pull it off. This is one of those stupid games where Pittsburgh wins by three to double-screw me. I hate giving points with the Steelers, but I'm doing it anyway.
Figgs: The best game of the weekend in my mind. I see this being a weird game with a close, weird final score, just like when these two teams meet in the regular season. Pittsburgh probably wins, but by less than six.
Nick: Steelers (-6.5). I changed this pick at the last minute; taking the Chargers here is classic case of over-thinking, rationalizing, and a little group think. Plus, one favorite has to cover, right? The Chargers were an 8-8 team that shouldn't have made the playoffs. San Diego won three games on the road all year; no wins against quality opponents, and no wins in cold weather. I don't think the Chargers have played a cold weather game all year. This feels like the patented Steelers' "controlled blowout." It's close for awhile, Roethlisberger pulls a few big plays out of his rear end, Pittsburgh turns their defense loose, and Pittsburgh probably gets a defensive touchdown at some point to seal the deal. I hate myself for doing this...

1 comment:

Figgs said...

I rule at this.