January 15, 2010

NFL Round 2 playoff picks

by Dan Bilicki In: Football, Picks

Why do they even bother calling this week’s slate of games “the divisional round?” It’s not like any of these teams represent the same divisions or anything like that. It probably comes from the same reason that the next round is called the conference championships, but at least that title still makes sense. Can’t we just rename this round: “Round 2,” and make things a bit easier on everyone?

Here’s some advice if you’ve still got a chance to pick in a playoff pool: Take the home teams. Since 1990, the home teams are 56-20, a .737 winning percentage. Against the spread though, that’s a completely different story. I wouldn’t be so quick to trust a few of these favourites, especially when you consider what happened last week, with three underdogs ultimately winning (at game time Green Bay was favoured), it just goes to show that anything can happen.

The lines are straight from Vegas and the home teams are in CAPS.

NEW ORLEANS (-7 ) over Arizona
How much do you really trust the Cardinals defence to contain Drew Brees and Co., who have had a week off to prepare and probably enjoyed watching the Cards get torn apart on defence. Sure, Arizona has an offence that is almost equally as potent, but this game reeks of a possible Kurt Warner stink bomb more TD passes than incompletions last week … Arizona ran a lot of blitzes at Green Bay last week, something an experienced QB like Brees thrives on. Because the Saints line is good enough to get Brees that couple of seconds of time, he shouldn’t have any problem hooking up with one of the many receivers he usually gets.

Bonus! Cards-Saints over-under: 57. Take the over and enjoy the shootout tomorrow afternoon.

Baltimore (+6.5) over INDIANAPOLIS
You can beat Peyton Manning the same way that Baltimore beat Tom Brady: By putting pressure on him. Ray Lewis has always done a good job of calling audibles to counter Manning’s chicken dances at the line … The Ravens’ power-running style matches up nicely against a speed-based Indy defence. Baltimore will need a better game out of Joe Flacco, for sure, but shouldn’t have any problems mashing it up along the ground in Indy.

Dallas (+2.5) over MINNESOTA
Being a fan of the Cowboys, it’s kind of scary to see how many people are jumping on the Dallas bandwagon … While this could end up in a big jinx, the matchup against Minnesota on Sunday is actually favourable for the Boys. They’ve played well against speed receivers recently and don’t give up big plays. If their front-four can put pressure on Brett Favre, there’s no telling how bad of a gunslinger he could become … The real question is if Dallas can contain Adrian Peterson. This might not be a big factor if they can get out to an early lead, which is something they’ve prospered at recently … And who knows how many Dallas fans will pack into the dome either, considering recent bad showings by Viking crowds when it matters.

SAN DIEGO (-7) over New York Jets
Just because the Chargers pass a lot and the Jets have Darrell Revis, it doesn’t mean that the Chargers can’t lay into the traveling Jets. Revis can only cover one man and San Diego has a balanced aerial attack with four solid — and tall — receivers … Mark Sanchez didn’t crap the bed last week, but that was against a Bengals team that was unprepared and clearly outclassed. Even the Jets vaunted running game shouldn’t be able to keep this one close for a cover.

Last week: 2-2
This post-season: 2-2

3 Comments

  1. Good picks. Baltimore does look ready to take on the Colts. The playoffs are the most wonderful time of the year. Anything can happen and it usually does!

  2. Great post..will bookmark this..thanks

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