Tag Archives: NFC

Doin Championship Lines

This football season sure has flow by. Maybe it’s because the Raiders were relevant for so long I kind of forgot what it meant to care about the regular season. I ended the year making good picks with three straight winning weeks, as soon as the playoffs started, I went down faster than a Charlie Sheen threesome culminating with last weeks 0-4 performance. What does this tell me about making picks in the playoffs, don’t listen to any of the hype. Pick the opposite of your instincts, and you’ll be okay. Maybe that’s not the best strategy, but I have to change it up since nothing I’ve done the first two weeks is working.

.500 in the playoffs, I’ll take it.  The bonus here is I successfully picked the biggest upsets in the playoffs thus far, Seattle over New Orleans and the Jets over the Pats, so I’m some what satisfied with my overall performance in terms of picking winners this post season.  Only problem is, I have no winnings to show for it.  Maybe I should stick to two spot parlays over four.  Well, there’s only two games this weekend …

Green Bay (-3.5) @ Chicago

Chappy picks Chicago (+3.5). I really don’t want to pick Chicago, and would much rather see Aaron Rodgers make his first Super Bowl appearance, but it’s opposite day with the picks, so I guess I’m rolling with Obama’s favorite team. In two games during the regular season the Bears held Rodgers to 27 total points. This looks like a different QB than the last time they played though as he tore through Philly and Atlanta, but I’m confident the Bears D can stifle him enough to keep the score close. The Bears are a much better defensive unit than those first two teams Rodgers faced. Even though the lowly Seahawks put up 24 points on the Beard D, that game wasn’t as close as it looked in the final score. I’m far from a Cutler fan, but his season has been pretty good, and whether I like to admit it or not, he is a franchise QB. He’s made the best from what he had, which isn’t much outside of Matt Forte on offense. He’s definitely prone to make some ill advised throws here and there, but overall Cutler has grown a lot since last year’s abysmal season. I can’t remember a home team that was the #2 seed, and won their division, and was still a dog. That point alone sold me on this pick.

I like the Packers defense and offense better than Chicago’s, but that doesn’t always win you games. I think a few turnovers, and some solid returns from Hester set the Bears up for a win. These divisional games are usually very close, so it’s impossible to not take the points.

By picks Green Bay (-3.5). Normally I’d be shocked to find that a team that barely made the playoffs (albeit through no fault of their own, 2010 Seattle Seahawks) would be the favorite on the road against a team who finished second in the conference.  But not if said team had Aaron Rodgers as their QB.  I was high on Atlanta all season, and despite the fact that they weren’t the Pittsburgh Steelers on defense, the Falcons still did enough to hold off opponents for wins.  But Aaron Rodgers absolutely destroyed them.  He’s been picking apart most of the defenses he’s seen for a minute now, and is easily the hottest QB heading into the conference championships.  Combine that with the opportunistic defense of Green Bay, and the Packers have a winning combination.  If “loosey goosey” Jay Cutler rears his ugly head at all this weekend, the Pack will get a few picks and send the Bears into hibernation.

NY Jets @ Pittsburgh (-3.5)

Chappy picks NY Jets (+3.5). Should we start calling him the Sanchize again? He’s already graduated from my nickname earlier in the year the SanCheckdown. I may have fallen prey to the media surrounding Sanchez, because he never can do enough to get love from the writers, me being one of them. He has had a good year, but this weekend against the league’s best rush defense he is going to have to step up. I don’t see him going for over 300 yards or anything, but his ability to pick up third downs will be the difference in the game. We know the Jets will run whether they gain yards or not, so it’s going to be up to Sanchez to find ways to convert those third and longs. I think the Steelers will win, but since it’s opposite day I have to stick with the Jets. Plus, I don’t really like that everyone calls the Steelers Americas team. It’s better than Dallas being called Americas team, but nobody outside of the Saints last year should have that label, because is America really rooting for the Steelers? Laughable if you ask me…

By picks N.Y. Jets (+3.5). As much as I think Alex Smith could easily be Mark Sanchez if it were he riding the coat tails of that tremendous Jets’ defense, I must admit, that scoring drive to answer New England’s, culminating in a beautiful touchdown grab by Santonio Holmes was quite impressive.  Impressive considering what was at stake.  If they don’t score, I truly believe New England’s momentum carries them to a come back victory.  But Sanchez nipped that in the bud.  The Steelers are a wholenother monster.  Sanchez will not perform so eloquently against the best defense in the business.  But he won’t have to.  I think Sanchez has developed a comfort level in being the game manager/clutch timely passing QB.  His 4-1 playoff record would back that statement up.  As good as a defense is, you need someone who can make the plays when it counts on offense.  If Sanchez could be the equivalent to the 2000 Trent Dilfer, then by all means Jets fans, take it.  I think he’s almost there.  When everything’s said and done, I believe the Steelers are by far the better team.  But if I have to go with my gut instinct, I think the Jets pull this out.

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Doin Divisional Lines

Ouch, the playoffs started rough, but I can’t say that I wasn’t aware that my picks seem to go downhill once the regular season ends. I wish I could say it was because the teams were so even, but with the exception of one game they were all blowouts. I actually missed most of the Arizona and Green Bay game because I assumed it WAS going to be another blowout when Arizona was up by 20 in the 3rd…  Anyways, my 1-3 record last week will have to improve if I want any of you to take my picks seriously this playoffs. This week I’m trying out a new strategy, and picking the teams I don’t want to win. I guess if I don’t win my picks, I’ll find some solace in jinxing the teams I want to lose. As always the home teams are in bold.

Arizona (+7) Over New Orleans

Do I want Arizona to win? No. Were they playing better than the Saints down the stretch? Yup.  I’m not sure why, but I like to root against Arizona, and for some reason the more I do root against them, the more they win! Last week they added another amazing chapter to their recent playoff history, but I guess that didn’t convince odds makers. It did convince me! The Saints defense struggled at the end of the year, and most likely will struggle again against a now very balanced Cardinals attack. With Beanie emerging as a solid back, the Saints will have to worry about more than just Warner and Fitz. I would say the same for the Saints, but their offense looked less dynamic than the Packers at the end of the year only producing 44 points over their last three games compared to averaging 36 through the first 13 weeks. I really like the Cards 10 straight wins against the spread, so I’m picking them with confidence! I kind of want to see a battle of the grey hairs in the NFC Championship game!

Baltimore (+7) Over Indianapolis

Since last week I was wrong about nearly everything, I figured I may as well go against who I want to win this week. I really don’t want to pick Flacco over Manning, which sounds retarded rolling off the tongue. You ever notice Flacco’s off hand when he throws? It looks like he’s got a disability or something. Anyways, in the end, I’m not really sure I agree with this line. Seven points is pretty high, especially when their first meeting in Week 11 was a 17-15 Colts win where the Baltimore D picked Peyton off twice. It was a sloppy Colts win, but it wasn’t anywhere near a blowout. The Ravens looked dominant against a mojoless Patriots team last week. It’s nice to see that you don’t really need a QB to win a game, you just need the other QB to NOT show up. I doubt the Colts will forget their mojo, and will hopefully win in a close one. I still think it’s lame that the Colts didn’t go for the perfect season, but I’m not Caldwell, so it wasn’t my decision.

Minnesota (-3) Over Dallas

I know, Dallas is the hottest team in the league, and not to many people are picking Minnesota since they kind of limped across the finish line. Tony Romo is playing better than I ever thought he could, the Boys rushing attack looks great, and their defense is shutting down everybody. All of this still isn’t going to stop me from picking the Vikes! The Vikings are 8-0 at home this year, and I doubt that Favre sort of came out of retirement to lose to pretty boy Romo at home nonetheless. There’s something about the Metrodome that helps them win. They play like nobody’s business when they are there, so I see this one playing out exactly the opposite of the way people are predicting. I’d say that this is the most fair line of the bunch. I hope I don’t find out the hard way this weekend when the game is on that the Cowboys are that good…

San Diego (-7) Over New York Jets

I was hoping that when I saw the LT glide music video, it would give me just one extra reason to root for the Jets, but finding out it was filmed two years ago ended that hope. As much as I don’t want SD to win this game, I have a feeling this one will be a blowout. There’s only one Revis, and three really good receivers and a decent fourth that Rivers can throw to (Jackson, Floyd, Gates, and sometimes Nanee). The Bengals only had one receiver, Ochocinco, so passing game was containable. In this pass happy era, it’s not the running game that wins games for you, especially in the non-treacherous weather of San Diego. Just look at the top two seeds in the AFC this year! Phillip Rivers, much to my dismay, is a great quarterback. No matter how much I sports hate this guy, he keeps playing well and winning. The Chargers are as healthy as they’ve been all year and are getting back Eric Weddle in the secondary. I can’t picture Sanchez putting in two good playoff performances in a row. Especially since this time around he will have to make more plays if their offense is going to be successful. They won’t be able to grind it out on the ground like they did against Cincy. I see Sanchez making some mistakes against a much better defense.


Doin Wild Card Lines

Last week was a nice winning week of 4-3 and finishing the regular season vs. the spread at 49-45-3. I’m happier than Scott Boras every time a client of his signs a long deal that my predictions led to a winning season! The playoffs are a completely different story though. I usually struggle in predicting the outcomes in recent years. You really don’t know how these games are going to turn out, but I’ll do my best to steer you in the right direction. As always the home teams are in bold.

Ochocinco will have a tough time on Revis Island

New York Jets (+2.5) Over Cincinnati

The Bengals have shown one thing since Chris Henry’s untimely death, which is, they aren’t past it. The gloom of losing a teammate has put them in the losing column in three of their last four games. The Jets meanwhile got two straight teams on bye weeks, and are amazingly in the playoffs. Indy and Cinncinati laid down for them, Tampa wasn’t hard to keep under 10 points, Atlanta WAS a tough opponent to hold to ten, but I’m tired of this double fist pump fetish on the Jets D. Sure they have Revis, who will shut down Ochocinco, but I don’t see them winning more than this wild card game. Sorry Cincy, but you’re injured at the wrong time, and playing your worst when it counts most. At least you were the most successful Hard Knocks team so far! The Jets will win, but I’ll be rooting for Cincy. Who knows Sanchez could choke on a pepper and throw a few interceptions and give this one away.

Philadelphia (+4) Over Dallas

Call me crazy, but I still think the Eagles are the better team. In the playoffs, they will pick up their game. They have been there, and will step up. McNabb is a perfect 3-0 in the wild card round over his career, and has 8 more playoff wins than Romo, who hasn’t won A playoff game. I can’t take anything away from Romo at this point as he has played some very good football lately. My lingering hope is that since he has played so damn well lately, he is bound to come crashing down to the Romo that looked so bad earlier in the season. Or even the Romo we saw four weeks ago will do. I know there’s a lot of doubters on the Eagles side after last week’s shellacking, but about this time a week ago, the experts were putting them in the Super Bowl. I guess everybody likes to jump ship every now and then.

New England (-3.5) Over Baltimore

Wes Welker this, Wes Welker that, is pretty much all you hear about this game. Although Brady hasn’t thrown many other receivers this year, that doesn’t make me believe he can’t throw to the other guys. Sure his completion percentage is going to go down with Welker out of the game, because Welker is that good. I’ve seen Tom be that good too without big names, and everytime I doubt the guy he proves me wrong. Plus his opposition is Mr. Flacco, and honestly I’m still not sold on him. He’s successful enough to keep his job, but I’ve rarely been impressed when watching him. Maybe it’s his weak receiving group. There’s also the Foxboro factor too, that seems to win them games somehow. I see Brady exposing Baltimore’s weak secondary in ways that the Raiders couldn’t last week.

Green Bay (+1) Over Arizona

I’m kind of surprised I’m picking three road teams, but you have to go with your gut on playoff picks. Green Bay opened up a can of offense last week, destroying Arizona’s 2nd team everything. It won’t be quite as easy this time around. Arizona will surely play all of it’s playmakers, and they aren’t short on those. Their main question going into the game has to be their defnese’s inability to contain teams. Green Bay has proved they can put up points in bunches, and seem to be rolling as good as anytime I can remember this season. Rodgers has turned into the anti-first round flop pick, and been the leader that they hoped he would be! They also have a defensive leader in Charles Woodson. He has been all over the field and deserves to be the defensive player of the year. Woodson should be all over the field trying to confuse old man Warner and his receivers. If he’s a major factor in this game ie. picks, tackles, or sacks I like the Packers chances. I’d love to see a Minnesota Green Bay matchup next round, and that would mean that Philly also won!