Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Place Your Bets Divisional Playoff Round

Hope you had an enjoyable weekend watching playoff football last weekend. If you follow my posts you know I had a 2-2 weekend with a huge miss on Indy in a route and a huge hit with Seattle over New Orleans. Hopefully you stayed in the black with those two off-setting!

Next up we have the Divisional playoff round where the AFC match-ups end up being inter-divisional match-ups and the teams will play for the third time with one emerging as the winner of the tie-breaker and going on to the AFC Championship Game.

Baltimore @ Pittsburgh -3.5

Games in this rivalry are always close and usually decided by 3 or 4 points. That is why we have the 3.5 spread. Very tricky move by Vegas. But for me, the extra .5 point swings me over to the Ravens side as I see this as a FG game. In a FG game that means the Ravens are the winner based on the spread. Not much else to go on here, the extra week and home field is nice for the Steelers, but Baltimore will keep it tight. Take the Ravens in a small play, take the points.

New York Jets @ New England -8.5

Man I hate this spread. I LOVE the Patriots to win as I have them and the Packers in the Superbowl. But I think the Jets will be motivated to prove that MNF beat down was an anomaly. I would not make this a big play either, but I cannot turn my back on New England here after the thrashing they laid on the Jets. The Patriots historically let there play do the talking when teams or coaches run their mouths during the week, and Rex Ryan has done playing of talking this week. I am going with New England to drub the Jets by double digits, thus covering the number. Take New England give the 8.5 points.

On the NFC side of things we have the upstart Seahawks who I still think should be the 6th seed and playing Atlanta this week. I agree that the division winner should get in, but they should re-seed the teams based on record not just seed based on division winners. BUT that being the case Seattle has the better match-up again this week.

Seattle @ Chicago -10
Once again I like the Hawks to cover in this game. They already won a game here this year, but it wasn't in January. Chicago is not the blow-out type of team. They pound the ball and loosen up the defense then hit long bombs to score quick. I think the Hawks hang around for two reasons, Jay Cutler and Matt Hasselback. Cutler will have one or two important turnovers and Hasselback brings veteran leadership at a vital stage for this young team. I like Seattle as my big play of the week, take the Hawks and the double digit points!

Final Game is: Green Bay @ Atlanta -2.5

I also like the winner in this one as a big play as well, so I have TWO locks of the week, both on the NFC side! I love Green Bay here. Atlanta is an incredibly balanced team and look to be well on there way to the Superbowl in the NFC as they separated themselves from the rest of the teams nicely this year. But Green Bay has had a lot of injuries this season and has played through them. The Falcons won the only meeting of the season between these two teams 20-17 on a 47 yard field goal by Matt Bryant with zero on the clock. It was a hotly contested game and should be very physical again this week. It will likely come down to who has the ball last again, so it is hard to predict which team that will be and if they can convert or miss on the last drive. Ryan vs Rodgers will be exciting. Clay Mathews is the X-factor and the reason I give the win to the Pack. Take the Packers plus the points.

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