Monday, January 4, 2010

NFL Playoff Preview

It's that time of year again. The holiday season is behind us and it's time for playoff football. Three of the four first round Wild Card match ups will feature rematches from Week 17 games, and the fourth will be a rematch from earlier in the season. I was excited for a possible Patriots run until the news of Wes Welker's season ending injury.

First off, Welker should be a legitimate MVP candidate. He had 123 catches this season, even while missing almost 3 full games. He was by far the MVP of the Patriots, and is one of the toughest players in football. For those people out there saying Belichick was stupid to play his starters, I will say this. It's very easy to say things like that after the fact. But the truth is this was a freak accident and could've happened the first play of the playoffs too. I'd rather have a coach that takes risks and wants to win every game, than someone like Jim Caldwell whose team might as well have not shown up yesterday.

Let's not complain Boston fans because we've still had it pretty damn good the last decade. Even though there have been some really crappy injuries (Brady and now Welker), the fact that we have been consistently a top tier team during the post-free agency NFL is pretty remarkable. Plus, even if the Pats lose, at least we get to root against the Colts, Cowboys, and whoever is playing Brett Favre.

Though the Patriots are going to need a miracle to win the Super Bowl this year, I still think they can beat the Ravens. While they've lost Welker, they have all their running backs back and I'm not sold on the Ravens being that good. The Jets lucked out that they got to play the Bengals to get in the playoffs, and then get to play them again in the first round. The Bengals look to be by far the weakest team in the playoffs, and I expect the Jets to win an incredibly boring and ugly game.

The Dallas-Philly match up is intriguing and could be the best match up of the weekend. Dallas hasn't won a playoff game in 14 years. Let me say that again, Dallas hasn't won one single playoff game for 14 years. I would love if that streak reached 15 Saturday night, but sadly I think this could be Dallas's year to get to a NFC title game. I think Dallas wins a close one 24-20.

In the final game of the weekend I see Green Bay winning an exciting game against Arizona. My reason for this is simply because I have no idea what Arizona team will show up on any given week. Arizona could win the Super Bowl or lose to a JV high school team, you really just never know.

My Super Bowl prediction is Chargers-Saints, though to say I lack confidence in this pick would be the understatement of the decade. My only hope is that it isn't Dallas-Indianapolis. I seriously would not watch the Super Bowl if that happened.

In any case, the football playoffs are bittersweet to me. Though I love watching the games, it also sadly signals the end of football season, and means it's a few months closer to Baseball season. I guess we should all enjoy this last month as much as we can. Thanks for reading everyone!

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