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It’s on to the Divisional Round of the NFL playoffs, with for more games on the slate.
As usual, picks below are in bold.
New Orleans @ San Francisco
I must be crazy, or I must have something against them, but I’m picking the Saints to lose two weeks in a row. I do actually think that Saints can win the Super Bowl, but the Saints playing on the road worries me. Have they really evolved that much from last year’s debacle in Seattle? I’m not too sure. Also worth mentioning: the 49ers boast the best defense in the NFL. The Saints will find it much more difficult to run the ball on Saturday, which is a large part of the Saints revival this season. The 49ers should neutralize it and pray Alex Smith makes enough plays to pull out a victory.
Denver @ New England
I’d be concerned if I was Pats fan. Tebowmania makes it’s way to Foxboro and if last week was any indication of what Tim Tebow is capable of when he throws the ball marginally well, I’d be worried. The Broncos are a good defense, and they’ve built their attack on pass rush. Von Miller and company will be getting after Tom Brady and the Pats don’t have enough of a running game to slow them down. The biggest question heading into this game is, was last week a stepping stone for Tebow or an aberration? I tend to believe it’s the latter.
Houston @ Baltimore
Everything has fallen right for the Ravens to win it all this year. Pittsburgh’s loss means that they’ll avoid their nemesis in this year’s playoffs. Assuming they win this week, and they should easily, they will either have a home game against the Broncos or have to travel to New England to play a Patriots team that isn’t exactly world beaters this year. There are no more excuses this year for Joe Flacco and the Ravens, it’s Super Bowl or bust.
New York Giants @ Green Bay
The road to the Giants 2007 Super Bowl went through a favored Green Bay team as well. It’s only fitting that the Giants, one of the few teams that played Green Bay tough this year, will have to travel Lambeau Field again if they want another chance at a title. There are many similarities between the Giants of today and the Giants of 2007, mainly that the defense is stepping up and playing their best football at the right time. The Giants rode an aggressive, and oftentimes unstoppable pass rush to a title in ’07 and the Giants for all their shortcomings on defense this season, have their defense playing the best they’ve played all season. If the Falcons game was any indication, Aaron Rodgers better get his running shoes on. A little Eli Manning magic and enough defense to slow down the high powered Packers’ aerial attack should clinch an upset for the G-men.