As the Green Bay Packers closed out Wild Card weekend, I couldn’t help but hope for a more competitive Divisional Round.
WALDER’S WISDOM: What if I told you the Seahawks were the team that doesn’t belong in the playoffs? However, if I’m wrong, I would rather play a fragile Atlanta Falcons team with no experience than the experienced Seattle Seahawks seeking revenge from two years ago. With home field advantage throughout, it’s going to be tough knocking off Deflatey McGee and Filmy McFilmerson. On the first play of overtime, Palmer connected with Larry Fitzgerald for a 75-yard completion to move the ball to the Packers 5-yard line.
Defensively, the Lions were held to just 205 yards passing and a paltry 49 yards rushing. If the Texans win, it would be the second-biggest upset in National Football League history, in terms of point spreads. Nevertheless, Ryan led them back into contention and finally a bye in the first round. These strengths will be featured as teams try to continue their season. The Eagles were able to beat Atlanta, 24-15 in week 10. A Chiefs win could blast a lot of narratives away about the team and the franchise itself.
Vic Beasley and the Atlanta pass rush are going to be a real problem for the Seattle offensive line. As an example, in that 2011 game, the Giants had a 9-7 season and the Packers had been 15-1.
Luke May is Sporfolio’s NFL DFS expert, and Mario Mergola operates Sporfolio as the expert for NFL Picks Against the Spread. With the win, New England will reach their sixth consecutive AFC Championship Game.
After dropping that game by a score of 43-14, the Chiefs rattled off 10 wins in 12 weeks, finding ways to win close contests. The Cowboys have the running game to control the clock and keep the ball out of Rodgers’ hands, and their secondary is as healthy as it’s been all season with cornerback Morris Claiborne returning this week.
Nate’s prediction: Upsets can happen, but not in this one.
Steelers at Chiefs: Pittsburgh 27-20.Roethlisberger is becoming an historic playoff quarterback; he’s 12-6 overall. Let’s take a look at all four of this weekend’s Divisional playoff games. Two plays later, it was Palmer to Fitzgerald again for the winning score.
Pittsburgh’s offense overwhelmed Miami early in the Wild Card round, gaining over 200 yards in the first quarter. The Houston Texans are still alive in the playoffs, albeit with much longer odds of advancing to the Super Bowl.
One other reason why I’m picking K.C.: what if Roethlisberger’s foot injury isn’t nothing?
These two teams have also faced each other earlier in the season in Week 4.
In what is perhaps my favorite matchup of the week, the Steelers take on the Chiefs at Arrowhead.
Kansas City’s conservative offense is effective and their defense certainly can provoke turnovers: they led the league in interceptions and were tied for third in forced fumbles in the regular season.
Date and time: Sunday, 4:40 p.m.
These teams played a terrific October game at Seattle, which the Seahawks won, 26-24, scoring nine points in the final five minutes after blowing a 14-point lead. Not a good stat when you’re getting ready to go up against Aaron Rodgers. The Chiefs are a very good team. However, they will likely catch a huge break in that they nearly certainly won’t have to face Jordy Nelson, who broke two ribs against the Giants in Green Bay’s win last weekend.
The Packers got a big break against the Giants at Lambeau, thanks to yet another Hail Mary pass from Aaron Rodgers. His career playoff completion percentage (61.9) is a little misleading, because he’s improved significantly since leading the Steelers to a title in his second pro season.
The rest, as they say, is history. Yes, Zeke Elliott and Dak Prescott were incredible this season, but they’re rookies.
I’ll make Green Bay +4.5 over Dallas my 8-star play.