2012 NFL Wildcard Weekend – FootballSaturday, January 5, 2013 14:48
Game picks for the 2012 NFL Wildcard Weekend.
NFL Wildcard Week
LAST WEEKS PICKS
10 – 6 = .629
Specials: 2 – 2 Overall Tally: 133 – 117 – 6 = .532
Specials: 34 – 29 – 1 = .540
Before we get to our picks for WildCard Weekend, I thought we should review my brilliance as a prognosticator using my September forecast of who would/wouldn’t make the playoffs…First the AFC…
I have the Ravens winning by a whisker at the Razor; while the Steelers prove too much for the Bengals.
In the divisional round, look for the Bolts to spank Pittsburgh and the Texans to throttle the Ravens in the Lone Star State.
The AFC Championship game is a classic and the Texans find their way to the Superdome for Super Bowl 47–and Norv Turner lives to coach another year.
You, at least have to give me some love on picking four of the six teams who are still alive in the AFC. I was also dead wrong—thank God—about how dangerous it would be for Peyton Manning to continue playing and seriously underrated the Broncos post-season prospects.
Chargers fans have to be thrilled my vision of As the Norv Turns continuing its run in SoCal was a pipe dream—I must have been smoking something really delusional.
Oh, and anyone who tells you they picked the Colts is a liar or incredibly lucky. However, The Gairzo did not buy into the doom and gloom often forecast of the Horseshoes:
2011 Record: 2 – 14
- The Horseshoes got some great Luck for the next decade. His arm may not be the howitzer coaches salivate over, but Andrew Luck has incredible tools any observer could see in less intense pre-season action.
- Before you kiss this season away for the Colts, remember that their closet didn’t just empty completely when Manning bolted for the Rockies.
- The major defensive challenge will be transitioning to a 3-4 under former Ratbird DC and new head coach Chuck Pagano.
- Offensively, Bruce Arians has made a career of bringing out the best in his quarterbacks.
- Which means opponents better not take Indy with Andrew Luck lightly.
- I know 2-14 demands a change, but Jim Caldwell was dealt a raw hand. When he won, it was because Tony Dungy had left him a great team–so they said. Manning left just as a rash of devastating injuries and age brought the Colts down–and Caldwell had to deal with the front office’s lack of foresight and mediocre drafting.
- I think the Colts fool more than a few teams this year…
Predicted Finish: 8 – 8
Major Story: Andrew Luck keeps the Colts in every game.
How can someone be so right and…so wrong?
2011 Record: 8 – 8
I’m the first one to admit Tim Tebow has delivery issues, and he may never get the chance to guide a team as a legitimate starting quarterback.
On the other hand, the guy has been a winner since Pop Warner and his teammates, to a man, believe in him.
I thought John Elway and the Broncos front office were classless in the way they treated Tebow and Elway’s attitude smacked of arrogance and elitism.
However, Elway was given the keys to the Broncos kingdom by the Bowlen family, and you have to admire his go-for-it attitude. Bringing Manning in and shipping Tebow to the Big Apple puts the former Super Bowl MVP’s indelible stamp on the team.
Do Elway and Manning represent highly competitive men behaving with the inherent confidence of champions–or are they blinded by their own desperation?…
…I hope Manning has a good year and his neck is a non-issue.
What is an issue for the Broncos defense is D.J. Williams handing in a urine sample that wasn’t produced by his body. Rumor has it a horse may have been involved. Which takes Bronco loyalty to an unprecedented level.
I don’t even want to know—okay, fine, I do–how he procured the sample.
The Broncos have secondary problems, and Willis McAghee and Knowshon Moreno better perform in the running game or Manning won’t make it to Halloween.
Predicted Finish: 7 – 9
Major Story: Manning retires by Christmas.
Done laughing…Get ready to bust a spleen…Here’s what I saw in the NFC:
Wild card weekend is a wild one as the Eagles upset the World Champs, while the Pack destroys the Saints.
The Eagles prove the Cardinals are a desert mirage and the Falcons avenge playoff losses to the Pack.
Championship Sunday in the NFC finds the Falcons edging the Eagles setting up a very Southern flavored Super Bowl in the Big Easy.
Houston wins its first championship since coming into the league ten years ago…
TEXANS 27, FALCONS 22
Oh shut up! At least I have a shot at calling three of four conference championship teams and the Super bowl.
Remember, for tally purposes, we treat all playoff games as Specials picks to be added to our year-end tally. This year, I will play the Over/Under for each game. So In effect, each NFL playoff contest counts as, at least, two Specials. As always, I can confer “Tri-Fecta” Special status to any and all games, as I see fit.
GAME OF THE WEEK (7 – 10)
Minnesota Vikings @ Green Bay Packers –7.5 (45.5)
This game will count as three separate “Specials” for our purposes:
- We’re picking the winner
- We’re picking the Over/Under
- We’re calling it the Game of the Week
A rematch of lasts week’s straight-up upset by the Norsemen –at home, indoors, climate controlled.
This week? Frozen Tundra, witches-tit cold—and Aaron Rogers has four healthy wideouts for about the first time all year.
All due respect to one of the now, legitimately rated top five running backs of all time, Adrian Petersen, the Packers have stated their goal is to keep The Beast under 150 yards and make Christian Ponder beat them.
I think Dom Capers can embarrass his players enough to tackle better, and Ponder doesn’t have the weapons to beat Green Bay’s secondary. I don’t think Petersen can do it by himself.
Minnesota’s defense—especially CB, Antoine Winfield—is banged up—Aaron Rogers should have a lot of options.
The real wildcard in this one is the sizable edge on Special Teams the Vikes have especially when it comes to the kickers—that’s why we’re confident of beating the number.
While we wouldn’t be surprised of an outright upset, given last week’s result, it’s usually not a good move to bet against Aaron Rodgers after New Years.
PACKERS 33, VIKINGS 23
UPSET SPECIAL (10 – 7)
Indianapolis Colts @ Baltimore Ravens -7.5
Only the return of Ray Lewis keeps us from calling for a legit upset in this one. The Ravens were handed the division title and the Colts will prove it by making the Rat Birds scavenge for a late game winning field goal.
We believe Lewis’ return will inspire the Baltimore defense, Luck’s rookie status won’t keep him from at least, a two touchdown day; Ray Rice will make significant gains on a porous Colts run defense, and Joe Flacco’s experience will overcome his shaky play of late.
If the Colt’s can stop taking unnecessary penalties, they can pull the upset off or beat the line. No matter, the Total will end up over 50.
RAVENS 27, COLTS 24
LOCK OF THE WEEK
Cincinnati Bengals @ Houston Texans -4 (42)
The Texans had to be kicking themselves since New England bitch-slapped them in Week 14. They were intimidated and out performed on every possible level. If Gary Kubiak is any kind of coach he’s asking his players if they want to take off the panties and make a statement to the league other than, “Hey boys, we wear panties!”
The Bengals are a paper Tiger—and they won’t be facing an offensive line that was two or three players deep like they faced in Pittsburgh.
The Texans win this one big.
TEXANS 31, BENGALS 17
Seattle Seahawks @ Washington Redskins +3 (46)
Pete Carroll has done more great coaching than make third round pick, to-be-developed-later, Russell Wilson a legitimate NFL quarterback, he has honed a top-shelf, ball-hawking defense, and a team that plays more intelligently than maybe any other NFL squad.
Wilson knows when to slide or get out of bounds. The offensive line consistently blocks to the second level, and defenders stay on their assignment, don’t overrun plays, give up long gains—or easy touchdowns.
That might change if RG3 was full bore, but he isn‘t. Both coaches will rely on the running game, wait for the long ball if they see the opening, and play to have the final drive of the game.
We wouldn’t bet this game, but we’ll call it under the number, for the visitors, in a close one.
SEAHAWKS 21, NATIVE AMERICANS 17
As usual, my picks are in italic below…
NFL Lines Wild Card Weekend Playoff Game
Lines 1/5 – 1/6, 2013
|Date & Time||Favorite||Line||Underdog||Total|
|1/5 4:30 ET||At Houston||-4||Cincinnati||42|
|1/5 8:00 ET||At Green Bay||-7.5||Minnesota||45.5|
|1/6 1:00 ET||At Baltimore||-7||Indianapolis||47|
|1/6 4:30 ET||Seattle||-3||At Washington||46|
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