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Friday, January 29, 2010



The BATTLE OF THE BEST will be on display in 9 days. The two teams that were dominant throughout the regular season will now face each other to see who the best of the best truly is. Peyton Manning and the Colts have gone up against the two best defenses within the AFC in order to get where they are at now. This matchup, for the Colts, puts them up against an outstanding offensive unit led by star quarterback, Drew Brees. Brees and the Saints had a tough road to the Super Bowl as they had to go against the Cardinals and the Vikings. I knockout hit against Warner allowed the Saints to cruise in that game, but an instant classic against the Vikings last Sunday was a huge test for the Saints at home. But here we are. The best of the best squaring off in Miami next Sunday. Will it be Peyton and his experienced offensive line, or will it be Brees and his tenacious offensive unit. How will both defenses stop both offenses? The Colts defense has the edge, but they typically do not fair well against teams that can throw the ball vertically.

More to come..

Friday, January 22, 2010



Minnesota Vikings @ New Orleans Saints (-4)



New York Jets (+8) @ Indianapolis Colts


Saturday, January 16, 2010


Arizona Cardinals (+7) @ New Orleans Saints - The Saints come into this game entirely healthy and well rested. The Cardinals come into this game on a short week and off of a very emotional overtime win against Green Bay in the wild card round last week. I do not expect Arizona to look sluggish or tired in this game, but I think the health and energy of the Saints will be much more than that of Arizona's. The Saints are coming off three straight losses, and that is not how Super Bowl teams end their regular season. But, the Saints were banged up and rested their players the last two games of the season in order to be in a good situation for today. Drew Brees has a very favorable matchup against the Cardinals secondary that got absolutely torched last week by Aaron Rodgers. Kurt Warner also has a favorable matchup against the Saints secondary as they were ranked 25th against the pass this season. In order for the Cardinals to win this game they have to put constant pressure on Drew Brees so that he is never comfortable in the pocket, they have to hit the Saints receivers at the line of scrimmage to force Brees to hold the ball longer than he would like, and they have to limit the success of the Saints running game. I am anticipating that the Saints will force the issue of running the ball in order to keep the Cardinals offense off the field. That being said, if the Cardinals can force the Saints into 3rd and 7 and 3rd and 9, I think the Cardinals have a great opportunity to give the Saints a scare. In order for the Saints to win they need to do three things; run the ball effectively, protect Brees in the pocket, and FORCE turnovers from Kurt Warner. I really think the Saints will come out flying and put some points up in their first drive. I like the home team in this matchup, in a close game.

Baltimore Ravens (+7) @ Indianapolis Colts - Joe Flacco is banged up and with Freeney and Mathis coming after him all game, things won't get any easier for him. The Colts will stack with box all game to prevent the Ravens from having the success they had against New England. This will be a low scoring game as the Ravens defense will be all over the field and putting constant pressure on Peyton Manning. But, Peyton Manning will be behind center this week and I do not foresee the Ravens shutting down the two best quarterbacks of the decade in back to back playoff games. Manning is too good and too smart to be beaten at home with an extra week to prepare for this game. The Colts will have to run the ball in this game, they cannot pass it 50 times an expect the win. I think the Ravens will control the time of possession, but ultimately Flacco will have to come up with big 3rd down plays and I don't think his receivers are going to come through for him. I expect both teams to play physical, hard-nosed football and the Colts ground game to be the X-factor for Indy. If their ground game can gain positive yards and keep the defense aware of both the run and pass, Peyton Manning will have a huge edge in this matchup. I think Flacco will play better than last week, but one miss-fire will be the difference.

Dallas Cowboys @ Minnesota Vikings (-3) - The Cowboys have everything going for them right now; Romo is on fire, Felix Jones is running better than ever, Miles "Awesome" is playing awesome, and the defense has been suffocating the past 4 games. That being said, they now come into Minnesota and have to face one of the best offenses in the NFL. The Vikings are just as good with the pass as they are with the run thanks to the breakout potential of Adrian Peterson. Peterson is due for a monster game as he sputtered the last half of the regular season. I expect the Vikings to use a heavy dosage of a well rested AP against the Cowboys defense in the attempt to make their pass plays more affective. Farve will utilize Peterson's rushing attack to keep the Cowboys D on an even keel in order to allow himself to have time to drop back and pass the ball without much pressure in his face. On the other side of things, the Cowboys have to be able to gain some yards with their run game. The Vikings are a phenomenal run defense but the Cowboys think they can run on them. So, unless Tony Romo wants to be seeing a lot of Jared Allen, expect the Cowboys to force the issue with the run. I really think we will be in store for a good game as both these teams are very physical and have offenses that are explosive. I expect the home field advantage to come into affect, the Vikings fans have been tremendous all season long.
PREDICTION: Minnesota 24 - Dallas 20

New York Jets (+8) @ San Diego Chargers - The best defense in the NFL takes on the best offense in the AFC when the Jets travel to San Diego this weekend. The Jets will have to literally SHUT DOWN the Chargers in order to keep this game within reach. I think the Chargers are too explosive and have too much of an edge in special teams to not win this game. That being said, the Chargers defense can be run on and if the Jets are able to have success, like they have all year, expect the Chargers offense to be off the field during the Jets long drives. Mark Sanchez will be a non-factor in this game as New York will run, run, and run some more. The Chargers will have to prevent the Jets from getting touchdowns in the red zone as well as taking advantage of Sanchez anytime he drops back to pass. Phillip Rivers and Antonio Gates should fare well against the Jets as I expect Gates to be lined up against a linebacker or a nickle back all throughout the game. The Chargers are the hottest team in the NFL, and their defense has been consistently getting better during this long win streak. I don't think the Jets have enough offense to win this game.
PREDICTIONS: San Diego 20 - Jets 13

Monday, January 11, 2010

The Eagles and Patriots done, the Packers went out with a bang, and the Bengals couldn't handle the physicality of the Jets defense. 12 teams entered, 8 remain.

Friday, January 8, 2010


Wild Card Round:

Bengals over Jets
Eagles over Cowboys
Ravens over Patriots
Packers over Cardinals

Divisional Round:

Colts over Ravens
Chargers over Bengals
Saints over Eagles
Packers over Vikings

Conference Championship Round:

Chargers over Colts
Saints over Packers

Super Bowl:

Chargers over Saints


Wild Card Matchups:

New York Jets @ Cincinnati Bengals (-2.5) -
Cedric Benson is back and ready to rock and roll for the Bengals who are looking for their first playoff win in over a decade. The Bengals are 6-1 this season when Benson leads the game in rushing yards, so look for the Bengals to force the issue with the run to also help create opportunities for play-action passes. I like the Jets defense, but after the effort they put in last weekend I do not think they will be able to shutdown the Bengals offense and have a repeat performance. That being said, if Mark Sanchez can play smart football and handle the pressure that the Bengals will force all game, the Jets have a very good chance to win a low scoring game. I like the Bengals to rebound from last week and win a very physical game.

PREDICTION: Bengals 17 - Jets 13

Philadelphia Eagles (+4) @ Dallas Cowboys -
Give Andy Reid three chances against any team in the NFL and I would feel very confident to bet that he would win at least one of the three games. Well, he is up to number three this weekend and it's his last shot against Dallas. I love the Eagles this week in the big D. I do not expect Dallas to play with as much passion and energy as they did last weekend, and I surely do not expect the Cowboys secondary to shut down DeSean Jackson for the third time this season. If the Eagles put constant pressure on Romo and can limit the success of the Dallas ground attack they will have a tremendous opportunity to win this game. The Eagles are 7-0 under Andy Reid in first round playoff games and I believe this will be the 8th win for Big Red and the Eagles will move on to round 2.
PREDICTION: Eagles 31 - Cowboys 24

Baltimore Ravens (+3) @ New England Patriots -
The Patriots haven't lost a home playoff game since 1975, but I think that changes this year. The loss of Wes Welker will prove to be too much to overcome and Randy Moss will be double covered the entire game. The key to this game for the Ravens to win is the 1-2-3 punch of their running game with Rice, McGahee, and McLain. If the Ravens pound the Patriots defense with the run, then the play-action passes and screens will play dividends against a vulnerable Patriots defense. If the Ravens are able to have success running the ball and if the defense shuts down Moss and puts pressure on Brady, the Patriots will be packing it in early this year.

PREDICTION: Ravens 27 - Patriots 20

Green Bay Packers (-1) @ Arizona Cardinals -
The Cardinals are banged up; Boldin will be limited, and Rodgers-Cromartie and Rolle will play through the pain. The Packers are hot; winning 7 of the last 8 and coming off a huge win against the Cardinals last week. Jermichael Finley will be the difference maker for the Packers as he has caused havoc for opposing defenses all season, and the Cardinals do not cover tight-ends well. Not to be forgotten is the red-hot Aaron Rodgers and the 4 wide receivers that he targets (Driver, Jennings, Jones, and Nelson). This Green Bay team reminds me a lot of the Cardinals of last season and that should be very scary news for all Cardinals fans. Larry Fitzgerald will have to have a huge game and the Cardinals must run the ball effectively in order to get the win.

PREDICTION: Packers 31 - Cardinals 27


NFL Playoff Preview Coming on Friday...


-Predictions for this weekend's Wild Card matchups
-Predictions all the way up to the Super Bowl, and who SUNDAY PICKS thinks will be crowned champion this year.

All teams have the resumes for the Lombardi trophy, however, do they all have "IT". Only time will tell.

This weekend features the matchups of the Jets @ Cincinnati (Sat. 4:30 pm EST), the Eagles @ Dallas (Sat. 8:00 pm EST), the Ravens @ New England (Sun. 1:00 pm EST), and the Packers @ Arizona (Sun. 4:30 pm EST). All four games have no team favored by more than 4 points, and even has a road team favored in one of them (Packers -1). This weekend sets up for excitement and surprise.

Stay tuned for tomorrow's predictions.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Week 17 Selections

Here are my picks for Week 17 in the NFL

Straight Up winners are in BOLD

Selections against the spread are the team with the ( ) next to them

Indianapolis @ BUFFALO (-8)

New Orleans Saints @ CAROLINA (off)


****CHICAGO (-3) @ Detroit

New England @ HOUSTON (-7)

@ Miami

***New York Giants (+8) @ MINNESOTA

@ St. Louis

Green Bay (+3.5) @ ARIZONA

Kansas City (+12) @ DENVER

@ Dallas

BALTIMORE (-11) @ Oakland

**WASHINGTON (+4) @ San Diego

TENNESSEE (-6) @ Seattle

Cincinnati (+10) @ NEW YORK JETS

Friday, January 1, 2010

Week 17

With the regular season coming to a close this Sunday, the NFL has plenty of big games to finish out with.

-Baltimore, New York Jets, Denver, Houston, and Pittsburgh can all win and finish 9-7 and force a lot of tie breakers to come into play. The Ravens and Broncos are going against the Raiders and Chiefs, so it appears as though they will finish 9-7. The Jets face the Bengals, the Texans face the Patriots, and the Steelers face the Dolphins. All three of those games are tough to predict.

-The Eagles play in Dallas against the Cowboys, and with a win Philly would move into second place in the NFC Playoff standing and would receive the first round bye and second round home field advantage.

-The Cardinals square off against the Packers in Arizona, and this game could very well be replayed next week in the wild-card matchup in the NFC.

-The Vikings play against the Giants; both teams are coming off bad losses so it will be interesting to see if the Vikings are able to scratch out a victory and finish third in the NFC.

-Overall, the games are all tough to predict who will win and if the starters will play for some teams. I believe that the Colts, Saints, Chargers, and Patriots will all rest their main guys after a few series. But, we will wait and see come game day.

Predictions for all of Week 17 games will be posted shortly.