[SPORTS] NFL Wild Card Weekend

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New Orleans Saints (11-5) @ Seattle Seahawks (7-9):

Time: Saturday at 4:30 PM EST

Last time they played: November 21st – Saints 34, Seahawks 19.

Prediction: I don’t want to have to be the guy who tells you that this game is a mismatch. You should know that already. Seattle is the only team in NFL history to get a spot in the playoffs with a sub .500 record. Back in ’08 spent many article mocking the 9-7 Arizona Cardinals. How did that turn out? Sadly for the Seahawks, I don’t see them getting past the defending Super Bowl Champs. If the Saints can find a running game (Julius Jones anyone?), Drew Brees can spend the day picking apart Seattle’s aging secondary. I’ll go with the popular choice and pick Nola wins 45-20.

New York Jets (11-5) @ Indianapolis Colts (10-6):

Time: Saturday at 8 PM EST

Last time they played: December 17th, 2009 – Jets 29, Colts 15

Prediction: This is by far the trickiest game to pick in the AFC. Both teams have had many highs and lows this season. The Colts are hosting the game, but hadn’t even made the playoffs yet prior to week 17. The Jets are coming off a 38-7 shellacking of the Bills, but have been inconsistent down the stretch in losses to New England, Miami and Chicago. This season, Peyton Manning proved that it doesn’t even matter who he throws the ball to. Throw a Pop Warner player in there and Manning will get him the ball. Indianapolis finished the season on a four game win streak (even though none of the teams they beat made the playoffs). I’ve been negative about the Jets all season, but now is the time to change that. I think the Colts lack of any semblance of a running game will finally bite them. The Jets will take this one in a squeaker 24-21.

Baltimore Ravens (12-4) @ Kansas City Chiefs (10-6):

Time: Sunday at 1 PM EST

Last time they played: September 13th, 2009 – Ravens 38, Chiefs 24

Prediction: The Chiefs are one of the biggest surprises of the season. They went from a 4-12 bottom feeder last season to a 10-6 division champion in ’10. Matt Cassel has finally become the player Todd Haley thought he was getting when he traded for him. The two headed rushing monster of Jamaal Charles and Thomas Jones has been giving defenses fits all season. Oh yea, Dwayne Bowe has been healthy (although maybe not now) and dominant. The Ravens are…the Ravens. Lately, they always seem to be playoff bound from day one. Joe Flacco is officially a veteran and Ray Rice can dominate a game. None of the off season receivers acquired really had a monster year, but Anquan Boldin still demands respect from opposing secondaries. Ray Lewis (the ageless wonder) is still as good as he’s ever been. The Ravens have too much talent and experience to get knocked out in the first round. The Chiefs will show that they aren’t ready yet when they lose 28-17.

Green Bay Packers (10-6) @ Philadelphia Eagles (10-6):

Time: Sunday at 4:30 PM EST

Last time they played: September 12th – Packers 27, Eagles 20

Prediction: The Packers have largely been forgotten this season. They chugged along under the radar all year and had to win in week 17 to get a spot in the big dance. The Eagles on the other hand had a much bigger profile this season. That’s because Michael Vick became the team’s starting quarterback and electrified the NFL with the moves that made him so famous before his legal troubles. Green Bay beat two really good teams (Giants and Bears) on consecutive weeks to earn their ticket, but Philadelphia wrapped up a spot a few weeks ago and then promptly lost to the Cowboys in week 17. No matter where this game is, it’s going to be cold. How will the temperatures affect Vick and how big is the home field advantage with the rowdiest fans in sports? Vick’s redemption tour will continue with a 35-24 win in front of the Santa booing revelers.

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