Last Week: 11-5
The playoffs are finally here. I can’t wait to listen to Ron Jaworski and Chris Berman’s verbal diarrhea for the next four weeks. I’d like to get the odds of Ron and Chris picking the Eagles and Chargers to make the Super Bowl. But on a happier note, the Bengals can’t screw anything up until the draft this April, so the dread shouldn’t kick in for another month or two. The freedom is a nice change of pace.
It’s go time.
ATL 24 ARI 19 – The Cardinals are hosting a home playoff game for the first time since 1947…and they didn’t sell out their tickets until THE DAY BEFORE THE GAME!!!! The NFL had to give the Cards extra time to sell tickets in order to avoid a black-out. I know we are in a recession, but wouldn’t you think there would be enough fans – fans who have waited more than 60 years to see a playoff game on their own turf – to sell out the game in a reasonable amount of time? How can I back a team when its fans won’t even shell out the cash to go and watch them play? This isn’t the pre-season, it’s the playoffs. If this game were in Atlanta, do you think the Falcons would have any trouble selling out the game? No, not a chance. What more do you need to know?
IND 27 SD 21 – The Chargers made a late season surge to make the playoffs (thanks to the Broncos late season purge.) They have a great deal of momentum going in to a big game on their home field. So do I trust them to keep it up and pull out a win? No, and I’ll tell you why. Leonardo DiCaprio was fantastic in the movie Blood Diamond. If you haven’t seen the film, then you need to. His acting is extraordinary and he plays his character perfectly. Does this mean I am a big Leo fan? Do I consider him an elite actor? Heck no. You know why? Because despite his strong showing in Blood Diamond, I remember him best as a squirrelly little sissy in Titanic - the worst, most boring, drawn-out and over-hyped movie of all time. Sure, he may be a badass with huge muscles, a smart mouth and a cool accent in the more recent film, but it’s not enough for me to forget how lame and girly he was in an earlier movie. My point is, just because the Bolts have been playing great in the last few weeks, it’s not amazing enough to make me forget how much they sucked for the first three months of the year. And I know, it does make perfect sense. Not to mention the Colts have won their last 9 in a row and have the league MVP. That helps, too.
BAL 16 MIA 13 – Chad Pennington has been great. Ronnie Brown has been great. Ricky Williams has been great. Joey Porter (who I despise) has been great. Tony Sporano, Bill Parcells, the guy who paints the endzones; they’ve all been great. But I’m picking the Ravens. I hate to do it, but I have to pick them. The Ravens have a terrifying defense (Literally. I still think Ray Lewis murdered that guy) and smoked the Dolphins earlier this season. Plus, every instinct and gut feeling I have is telling me to pick Baltimore. I’m ashamed, but that’s just the way it is. On another note, the Orange Bowl was played in Dolphins Stadium on Friday night, and they got the Doobie Brothers (or what’s left of them) to play the halftime show. Are we really supposed to believe that Ricky Williams hasn’t been hanging out with the Doobie Brothers the entire weekend? The DOOBIE Brothers? Ricky is gonna be so high on Sunday he could wind surf on a pelican. That can’t be a good thing.
MIN 18 PHI 17 – Everyone and their brother is picking the Eagles to beat up on the Vikes in this one. But not me. I’m rollin’ with the Purple and Gold. And I have a few reasons: A. The Vikings have the perfect formula for winning a playoff game. Now I didn’t come up with this formula, but all the analyst turn to it around playoff time, so I’m going to use it as well. Minnesota is at home (in a dome, nonetheless) with a stud running back (Adrian Peterson is scary) and a stifling ‘D’. The experts always say that good playoff teams take advantage of their home field, run the ball well and play good defense. Sounds like the Vikings match up pretty well with that formula. 2. Andy Reid is known for screwing up in big spots. The Philly coach is often criticized for his poor clock management and indefensible challenges. Vikes coach Brad Childress is no Vince Lombardi, but he’s never been on the big stage before, and therefore never choked on the big stage before, so I have no case against him. Just Andy…and I don’t trust him. D. I personally watched the Eagles play the Bengals to 13-13 tie in Week 11. It was life-altering. I have a hard time picking a team to win in the playoffs after they played in the worst game I have ever seen. I honestly feel that I would have made a significant contribution had I played in that game. It was vomit-inducing. How can I back a team that tied the Bengals? I can’t. I won’t. Vikings win.
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