NFL Playoff Predictions: NFC Games
The NFL Playoffs are upon us, which means it is time for everybody to make their ridiculous predictions. However, TheSportsWatchers just going to cover the NFC games in this post, because clearly, as we are about to show you, our poor picks should be taken in moderation.
Let’s just get right to it. Like many of you, our Super Bowl picks from earlier this season were awful. We had the Cincinnati Bengals coming out of the AFC. Somewhere around their 10th loss in a row, we decided that our prediction probably wasn’t going to come true. Our other pick, you won’t think is all that horrible, except for the fact that we’re already picking against them. If you will note, we picked the Green Bay Packers to come out of the NFC this season.
Now the Packers have entered the playoffs as the 6th seed (despite being the probably the 3rd or 4th best team), are hot, on fire and have reeled off some impressive victories over the last couple of weeks. However, instead of sticking with our Super Bowl pick, we’re going with the opposing team. It suffices to say, if your strategy in reading this post is to bet against everything we say, you’ve made the right move.
Here are our NFL Wildcard Playoff Predictions:
#6 Green Bay Packers (10-6) at #3 Philadelphia Eagles (10-6)
As many of you recall, the Packers did indeed knock of the Eagles earlier this season—in Week 1. But that was opening week. Back then, Philly fans were still whining about Donovan McNabb, Kevin Kolb was the starting quarterback, Michael Vick wasn’t an MVP candidate, and the Green Bay Packers were actually healthy. Well, you can flip everything I just said, and you can pretty much flip the result of that game as well. The Eagles should win this contest for two reasons: their ability to run the ball, and their ability to stop the run.
The Eagles cannot stop the pass for crap, which is why one should expect Aaron Rodgers to have some fairly good numbers. But his numbers will be far from as efficient as they usually are, because the Eagles will make the Packers beyond one-dimensional. With no Ryan Grant on the field and Brandon Jackson running like a toddler in a walker at the point of attack, the Packers pose no threat to an Eagles rush defense, despite how mediocre it has seemed at times this season. Because the Packers won’t be able to run the ball, Aaron Rodgers will have to put on his cape—again. Do you really think he’s going to go the entire game without making a mistake against that Eagles blitz, tossing a freebie over Asante Samuels way, or getting a bad play from a backup tight end not named Jermichael Finley? I wouldn’t bet on Rodgers being his usual flawless self this time around.
On the other side of the ball, the Packers are actually pretty average at stopping the run. However, defending the run is an entirely different ball game when Michael Vick is on the field. All of a sudden that backside end can’t crash the line on runs away from, because he has to respect the bootleg. That poses the threat of huge backside runs for LeSean McCoy, and we know he can house those bad boys. And if McCoy gets going, it’s hard to imagine the Eagles losing this game.
That being said, we respect the Packers. This game will be close, and in all likelihood, it will come down to the 4th quarter, just as it did in Week 1. Only this time around, the Eagles appear to have the better hand, and we expect the Packers to get outplayed on the river.
Eagles win, 31-24
#5 New Orleans Saints at #4 Seattle Seahawks
Who says a losing team shouldn’t be in the playoffs? Why not? They won their division, those are the rules. If you want to change them, do it by any means necessary, but crying about it as if you didn’t know this type of thing could happen is about as ludicrous as the Seattle Seahawks chances of winning this game.
Don’t get us wrong though, we are not underestimating the power of the 12th man in Seattle. In fact, we respect it so much; we think this game is going to be close. But Matt Hasselbeck or not, there’s no way that Drew Brees is getting outplayed by a quarterback from a 7-9 team. Not this Saturday in Seattle, not on a Thursday in Mars. It just isn’t happening.
But the game will be close, mainly because the Saints have more holes than the Obama healthcare plan. The Saints have trouble stopping the run. Drew Brees has been entirely too freewheeling with football. And on defense, if the Saints need a stop, I’m not sure they can get it against an above average offense.
However, Seattle isn’t above average—in fact, by record, they are by definition below average. They aren’t any good, they probably don’t deserve to be playing this weekend, and they certainly don’t deserve to win this game.
Saints win, 27-21
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