The divisional round of the playoffs is nigh! Amazingly each game this weekend looks like it should be good. Of course last week we may have thought the same thing and 3 out of 4 of the games were prescribed for insomnia by 3 out of 4 doctors. I’m very much hoping that this weekend we have better games. I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a betting man, or at least not a good one! And that’s because there are ten million factors that go into winning a NFL game and I only have time to factor in a million or so. But I do have my hunches and I’ll give them to you if you ask nicely. Ok, thanks.
The Cardinals showed they don’t need a defense or Anquan Boldin to win and that will probably be how they’ll have to do it once again to beat the Saints’ high powered offense. I do believe rust can hurt all the bye week teams, especially if it’s in the axle of their team bus, but I also think the rest offsets the rust. Rest, rust, rust, rest. I feel like both teams have similar defenses and similar offenses so this game will hinge on turnovers, special teams and all those things us fake footballers hate. I’m taking the Saints in this game based on home field advantage and my affinity for the TV series The Saint starring Roger Moore.
In the late game the Ravens head to Indianapolis to face the Colts who they lost to earlier in the season 17-15, and 6 times in a row before that. The Ravens have been playing very good defense lately and I expect this game to be close. Unlike the early game these two teams are not similar and whoever imposes their will on the other will likely win. The Ravens will want to run and continue to run until they get into the endzone. The Colts will want to pass and continue to pass until, well, you get the picture. The Colts are good at losing in the first round after a bye week, but I do think Peyton Manning is a better QB under pressure than those days. This isn’t the Joseph Addai vs. Ray Rice game, it’s the Peyton Manning vs. Joe Flacco game. I have the Colts.
TheSongOfTime is killing in our Sporting News Playoff Challenge with 2818 points, congrats! And amazingly I (Doctor Razzball) am in the lead over at our NFL.com Playoff Challenge. Don’t forget to set your lineups for this weekend’s games!
All The NFL News That’s Fit To Link:
NFL Fanhouse previews all four of the games this weekend.
Second-String Fullback gives us their divisional round playoff picks while giving a tribute to the recently departed Jay Reatard.
NFL.com’s Gil Brandt looks at some key matchups for the divisional round games. Gary Brackett against Ray Rice looks like a good one to watch this weekend.
Scout.com’s Ed Thompson asks Giants’ TE Kevin Boss and Bears’ LB Tim Shaw who they think will win this weekend. Not that they can pick games better than the average schmo, but it is interesting to see their take.
Will Carrol of Football Outsiders takes an in-depth look at all the playoff teams’ injuries in his Black and Blue Report.
The National Football Post’s Brad Biggs doesn’t think Anquan Boldin will be able to go on Saturday. That’s good news for those salary cap players who need the cheaper Breaston or Doucet to play.
Sports Illustrated’s Jay Clemons give us his Top 10 Fantasy seasons for the 00’s. Who do you have? Brady’s 50 TD’s or LT’s 31?
The Football Girl lists her top 10 fantasy football disappointments for the 2009 season.
The Deuce is loose and NFL Nation tells us why.
GQ’s Jason Fagone weaves the tale of Marvin Harrison’s alleged crimes. If the longest article you’ve ever read was on Twitter be sure to take your 5 hour energy drink before diving in.
The Fifth Down takes a look at what NFL players had the most value this season, literally. I’m voting for Mr. Ray Rice.
Ed Reed killed Reggie Wayne’s python when they were in college and somehow lived to tell about it.
Jerome Bettis believes Bill Cowher is holding out for Tom Coughlin’s job.