NFL 2016 Week 17 Wildcard Weekend Picks & Analysis – FootballSaturday, January 7, 2017 12:28
Picks & analysis for 2016 NFL Wildcard Weekend Games.
NFL Wildcard Weekend
WEEK 17: 7 – 9 = .438
Overall Tally: 126 – 119 – 11 = .514
Specials 1 – 3 Cumulative Specials: 28 – 37 – 3 = .431
Totals Picks: 3 – 3 Cumulative Totals = 57 – 44 – 1 = .564
GAME OF THE WEEK 10 – 7
LOCK OF THE WEEK 5 – 10 – 2
UPSET SPECIAL 7 – 9 – 1
OVER/UNDER OF THE WEEK 6 – 11
GAME OF THE WEEK 8 – 7
NEW YORK GIANTS (11-5)- @ GREEN BAY PACKERS (10-6) -4.5 45 [O]
Aaron Rodgers is a hell of a leader. Six weeks ago, the Packers QB predicted his team could run the table and earn the NFC North crown. That was after a month of fairly sloppy play—unusually inaccurate passing by Rodgers—creating a sense of utter panic beyond the Frozen Tundra into every corner of Cheese World.
Mike McCarthy received the same slings and arrows as Mike Tomlin—minus the racially poisoned tips, except he was accused of suddenly bad play calling—as if he took a pill and became stupid over night.
After a 2-4 start, Jordy Nelson returned from injury, the defense begins playing better, Rodgers starts tossing his trademark darts, McCarthy dials up better plays—you know, the ones that work—and the Pack crushes Seattle on the Tundra, then polishes off their three division rivals to, once again, rule the North.
Meanwhile in the Big Apple, Big Blue faithful were questioning Ben McAdoo’s play calling acumen, Eli Manning’s desire and, BOOM, all of a sudden Odell Beckham, and Victor Cruz shake off nagging injuries, rookie Sterling Shepard gives Manning a third option—and young stud safety Landon Collins and rookie corner, Eli Apple, make the secondary a force and the G-Men go on to win nine of their next eleven games.
These are two good teams. They were well coached even when they endured a rough stretch in their seasons.
Most fanatics are idiots.
We like the home team here. The weather will be cold and Roger’s recent performances have been off the charts—take the Over…
Packers 33 Giants 27
LOCK OF THE WEEK 4 – 9 – 2
DETROIT LIONS(9-7) @ SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (10-5-1) -5 42.5 [O]
Yes, I know, the ‘Hawks are vulnerable. They can’t run the ball, the O-line is mediocre, they are asking Russell Wilson to do too much—and Earl Thomas is on IR.
Yet Seattle is favored by 8 points, a big Number, over a Detroit club that lost it’s last three games to NFC playoff teams. A victory in just one of those contests would have assured the Big Cats this playoff game at home.
Sorry, the Seahawks running game has fallen off but they still are a top twelve passing defense, eighth in rushing defense—and fifth overall. Russell Wilson leads a top ten passing attacks and is consistently careful with the ball.
Maybe his coaches ask too much of Matthew Stafford; maybe he asks too much of himself because the Lions can’t run the ball and defend the run poorly.
Bottom line: Until Detroit shows the world it can make the crucial big play, or third down stop, or first down, they will continue to be relegated to Wild Card limbo, and simply remain a legitimate playoff team’s stepping stone.
The Seahawks enjoy the NFL’s biggest home field advantage. Detroit will see it first hand, today.
Seattle might not blow the Lions out, but by the third quarter, it will feel as if the Lions just don’t belong on the same field.
We’re playing the Over and taking the home team.
Seahawks 33 Lions 24
MIAMI DOLPHINS (10-5) @ PITTSBURGH STEELERSS (11-5) -10.5 47 [O]
This game represents the first playoff game I’ve seen, in 5-6 years I’ve been handicapping NFL games, with a double-digit point spread. That’s right, the Dolphins are 10.5-point under-Fish to the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Yes, the same Black & Goldsters who Miami painfully dominated in a week six suck-fest, forcing a once proud Steelers defense to surrender 204 rushing yards to the unknown Jay Ajayi, and a once nimble Ben Roethlisberger to have post-game knee surgery scheduled for his meniscus.
The Steelers, without Big Ben, and, apparently, any semblance of a defense went on to lose three in a row. The Dolphins proceeded to win eight of their next ten and claim the last AFC Wild Card spot.
Ryan Tannehill started looking like a real NFL type quarterback, Ajayi had two more 200+ rushing performances and the Fish started getting some love as the “team nobody wants to play n the post-season.”
In the ‘Burgh, Mike Tomlin was again being lambasted as overrated, out coached, and “unable to beat teams he should beat.” We’ll tackle that kind of lame, lemming -like analysis next week.
It should concern happy Flipper fanatics this game will be played without Mike Pouncey who was key in each of Ajayi’s 200-yard performances. The Fish are without their starting quarterback, and Pro Bowl center. They aren’t going to manhandle a Steelers defense, that was still finding itself in Week Six—and that defense has shot up the NFL rankings to end up 12th in total yards, 10th in scoring, 9th with 38 sacks, and 13th, allowing 100 rushing YPG.
In late September, Pittsburgh was an embarrassing 22nd or worse in those same categories.
It should worry intelligent, reasonable Steelers fans Adam Gase will not let these Dolphins swim into Heinz Field wearing Speedos and sun bonnets. Miami plays sound technique, even if their talent is a bit thin.
Gase is my head coach of the year. He has gotten the most out of an awful defense, made Ryan Tannehill into a decent NFL quarterback, changed the culture in the building, and handled the adversity of losing the improving Tannehill to injury, by coaching up veteran Matt Moore to two straight wins—giving the Dolphins a chance to win only their second playoff game this century.
You read it here first—next year Miami wins the AFC East.
The Fish’s 2016 will end with Ben Roethlisberger breaking little Dolphins heart with a late game drive to ice a victory that could be very much in doubt.
Pittsburgh wins, Miami covers—Take the Over…
Steelers 33 Dolphins 31
OAKLAND RAIDERS (12-4) @ HOUSTON TEXANS (9-7) -3.5 36.5 [O]
Third year Oakland quarterback, Derek Carr, has a wonderful playoff career ahead of him. Unfortunately, he’ll have to wait a year for his first start after breaking his fibula in Week 16 against Indy—it probably won’t soothe his pain to let him know the Raiders are another year or two away from being a serious contender for the Lombardi trophy.
They need a defense.
The Raiders rank 26th in YPG surrendered, 23rd in scoring, dead last with only 25 sacks—but are second best in the league at forcing fumbles and tied for ninth with 16 interceptions. This Oakland defense is young and opportunistic, but pretty much thin on talent—with one exception. In budding superstar, OLB/DE Khalil Mack, Da Raidas have a supremely talented player who can take over a game, he’s the guy who forces fumbles and intercepts passes.
Luckily for Raider fans, Houston’s offense is worse than Oakland’s defense. The only offensive category in which the Shit Kickers don’t rank 28th or worse is rushing the football where they rank a respectable eighth.
Brock Osweiler has lost his confidence and it doesn’t help his receiving corps lacks a super star.
The unique dynamic this game presents would invariably land it in my Sucker Bet file, but I stopped that cop-out maneuver years ago.
Normally, the home tam gets the nod, but Osweiler has not performed anywhere close to what we thought. Yet, we really can’t put money on a stone cold rookie, Connor Cook, in the playoffs, can we?
Before we tackle that compelling question, Da Raidas and the Texans have other demons lurking in their locker rooms.
The scene in the Oakland locker room after the Indy game was unbelievably emotional, according to Carr’s mom. The Raiders spirit was shaken when their QB was lost for the year; you could see it on television.
In the Oil City, head coach, Bill O’Brien, didn’t pull the contract trigger on Brock Osweiler, owner Bob McNair did. Naturally, when idiot owners stick their noses in the football end of their business, the team suffers badly. Several outlets are reporting O’Brien is out if his team loses today. He’ll be offered another gig before he cleans out his desk.
Ultimately, management conflicts trickle down to the players, but I gotta believe Osweiler will take his own advice and “just have fun” against the shell-shocked Raiders. O’Brien’ leadership ability in pulling Penn State from the Sandusky molestation muck will become evident in this game–his second playoff appearance in three years…
We’re going all in against the punditocracy. Osweiler breaks out, the Texans Cover—Over the Number—the defenses will score big in this game.
Texans 27 Raiders 21
Per usual, here are my picks in bold italics:
NFL Lines Wild Card Playoffs – NFL Football Line
Wild Card Weekend Playoff Games
NFL Game Lines 1/7 – 1/8, 2017
|Date & Time||Favorite||Line||Underdog||Total|
|1/7 4:35 ET||At Houston||-3.5 [O]||Oakland||36.5|
|1/7 8:15 ET||At Seattle||-8 [O]||Detroit||42.5|
|1/8 1:05 ET||At Pittsburgh US||-11 [O]||Miami||47|
|1/8 4:40 ET||At Green Bay GW||-4.5 [O]||NY Giants||44.5|
4 Responses to “NFL 2016 Week 17 Wildcard Weekend Picks & Analysis – Football”
Leave a Reply
You must be logged in to post a comment.