Saints vs. Seahawks
Alright, so let’s start with an easy one. Saints are beat up, (- 10), but they face the worst division winner in NFL history, Seattle, coming off a hugely emotional win last week against St. Louis that got them into the playoffs. The Seahawks have one win all year, against a playoff team….one! That was against the Chicago Bears….3 months ago! Charlie Whitehurst is their backup, not really an NFL capable starter, Matt Hasselback is physically all banged up in the twilight of his career, 17 picks & 12 TD’s this year and it’s a team really lacking playmakers. There are 10 Saints who caught at least 23 passes, that’s the kind of team that Seattle is playing. Their defence is 27th and 27th against the pass. By the way the number in this game that jumps out at you? The best 3rd down team in the league is New Orleans, Seattle conversely, is near the bottom in 3rd down defence…this is absolutely ugly! 37-13 Saints and they easily cover.
Jets vs. Colts
The Jets, getting points at the Colts (+2 ½) Dallas Clarke and Austin Collie are out and this is not a great Peyton Manning team. The Jets run the ball well, they were 3rd in rushing this year. But everyone says “but the Colts! Oh man, lately, their rush defence is excellent” Pfft, no its not! In the last 3 weeks of the year it was Jacksonville, Oakland and Tennessee…terrible teams mostly, Jacksonville is okay. But they are teams without elite QB’s and when you don’t have an elite QB, you can jam up the box to defend the run. Mark Sanchez is better than Jacksonville’s David Garrard, whoever starts for Oakland and whoever starts for Tennessee. The Jets defence is ranked 3rd in fewest yards and only allowed 19 a game. You’re not, as a beat up offence – home or away, scoring a ton on the Jets. They have been strong on the road and for the record; Sanchez is at his best when the running game works and Dustin Keller, the tight end, is catching the ball, intermediate routes, and the Colts have been abused by solid tight ends this year. Indianapolis allows 4 ½ – 5 yards a carry. The Jets run the ball, keep the hounds off Sanchez – who can throw intermediate routes…take the points, Jets win 28-27.
Ravens vs. Chiefs
I think this is going to be a pretty competitive game; Baltimore (-3) has won at least one playoff game during each of the past two years, under John Harbaugh. Now the Ravens have a 12-4 record, but they really earned it! They beat Pittsburgh, Jets, New Orleans, Tampa…they drew the AFC East and the NFC South. The Chiefs, who did they get out of conference? The AFC West and the NFC West and the AFC South, they really got a weak schedule, the Ravens are not weak. Charlie Weiss is leaving from Kansas City, is that going to disrupt things? Well, it’s certainly not going to help. Don’t forget this about Baltimore…since Week 2, their loses have been to the Patriots in overtime, to the Falcons in the last 20 seconds and the Steelers….Baltimore is really good! It’s a potential Super Bowl winning team. Ray Rice has a good day and so does Joe Flacco, pretty close…though Baltimore pulls away and covers 27-17.
Packer vs. Eagles
How about those Packers? Cause America loves Green Bay! But I don’t…Listen, if it wasn’t for Philadelphia slipping up against the Vikings, they’d be a 7 or 8 point favourite in this game. Even the Patriots had a bad game against the Browns, it happens! Andy Reid is 7-1 in first round games. Green Bay is not a great road team, 3-5 this year. You’re talking about a team in Green Bay that needs Aaron Rogers to absolutely carry them, with no running game. Eagles don’t have this problem. Vick can beat you through the air, Vick can beat you running, LeShawn McCoy has got over a 1000 yards. Bottom line, this team has got far more ways to beat you. It’s true though, Green Bay can beat any team, but they are also capable of losing to anyone as well. They lost to Washington, Miami and Detroit. For the record, the Eagles also have an edge on special teams. Green Bay rushed for 39 yards against the Bears, they are a one dimensional team, on the road, don’t like them. Take the Eagles; swallow the points 28-20.
Oregon vs. Auburn (National Championship Game)
Play Auburn at – 2 ½. The Ducks, do you know they got 8 TD’s from their defence and special teams along with 10 offensive TD’s of more than 40 yards? But let’s be honest, who did they play? A lot of New Mexico States, they were getting wacked by Stanford at half, they were outplayed by USC for much of that game. They didn’t have the type of competition that Auburn did. At Auburn, the Tigers went 9 games against both teams and in seven of them; Tigers were trailing in the second half. Nobody is going to blow out anybody in this game. Oregon was in one game that went down to the wire, against California, and crossed their fingers, Cal missed a field goal and they won! Auburn has been great in those games. Do you know why Auburn has been good when late into games? Conditioning! The one thing Oregon does , wears you out. You are facing a team that was unbelievable in the 4th quarter. Yeah Oregon can score late, but did you know that Auburn outscored those 9 bowl opponents 135-30 in the 4th quarter? That’s more impressive than Oregon’s 4th quarter! They outscored 9 bowl teams!! Oregon has finally met their 4th quarter match. For the record, the SEC is 6-0 in BCS championships, 7-0 in title games, if you go back to the Sugar Bowl in ’97. I’m taking the better conference that’s never lost in 15 years in this game and a team that won’t fall into the trap that everybody does, against Oregon, which is get exhausted and fall a part in the 4th quarter, Auburn is a 4th quarter team against better competition. Auburn wins it 38-30.