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Old 12-31-2018, 12:39 PM   #1
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So it took until the final week to settle the teams and matchups, but they're now set.

On first glance the Wild Card match ups look like they should be good games to me.

Saturday 2:35 Mountain
#6 Indianapolis Colts (10-6) at #3 Houston Texans (11-5)


Two teams that are both relatively hot. Texans are 11-2 in their last 13 games after a 0-3 start, and the the Colts are the third team in the Superbowl era to start 1-5 and make the playoffs. Division rivals who spit the season series in a couple of 3 point games including Frank Reich's famous go for it on 4th down in OT which put the Texans in position to win the game with a Field goal as time expired. Both teams have talented QB's who were coming off injuries from last year and once their guys got healthy these teams starting winning a lot.

The Texans feature house hold names on defense in Watt, Clowney, Mathieu, but the Colts defense which is a lot less known was a very solid unit in the second half of the season lead by DROY candidate Darius Leonard. Colts also had hugely improved offensive line play this year...something Houston didn't. Texans hope to have Lamar Miller back to bolster their run game, but will be in tough for secondary receiving options with Fuller and Thomas both out.

It's a tough one to pick, but I have a tough time going against Andrew Luck. Colts win 27-24.

Saturday 6:15 Mountain
#5 Seattle Seahawks (10-6) at #4 Dallas Cowboys (10-6)


Another game that matches teams who have already played this season. Seattle beat Dallas early in the season at home, but a lot has changed with both teams since. After the last Legion of Boom member in Earl Thomas went down and with a record of 4-5, the Seahawks won 6 of their final 7 games to claim the top wild card spot. They have re-established themselves as a power run team that plays good solid defence with Bobby Wagner, Frank Clark, and a generally unheralded group that's replaced the big names from the last Seahawks teams that made the playoffs. Russel Wilson still makes plays when he has to.

Dallas started 1-4, made a controversial trade in which they parted with a first round pick for Amari Cooper, than since rallied to win 9 of their last 11 to finish 10-6 claiming the NFC East. Similar to Seattle the Cowboys have a good solid defence and use a power run game to control the clock on offence. Since the addition of Cooper the passing game has been much improved as has the play of Dak Prescott, which in turn has made the run game more effective.

I have to go with the proven Russel Wilson here, and take Seattle to win 20-17.

Sunday 11:05 AM Mountain
#5 Los Angeles Chargers at #4 Baltimore Ravens


Third rematch of the weekend, as these teams met only 2 weeks ago in Los Angeles. In that game the Ravens pretty much had to win to keep their season alive and were able to do so against a fat and sassy Chargers team who had just claimed a playoff birth, and still had a shot at the top seed. Baltimore played a tough game on defense and used their run game to win that match up. Again two teams coming in hot as the Chargers won 11 of their final 13 games and Baltimore has won 6 of 7 since installing Lamar Jackson as the starter. Baltimore's top ranked defence combined with a ball control offence is a trendy pick to represent the AFC in the Superbowl.

The Chargers shouldn't be overlooked though as they should have more healthy bodies on both sides of the ball than they've had all year with both running backs in the lineup to go with Joey Bosa on defence. Rivers took a lot of hits in the Thursday night win in KC, and again against the Ravens the following week, and was not very sharp yesterday throwing 2 picks and having his team turn the ball over 4 times. Is he finally starting to show the age of a guy of a 35 plus QB who isn't exactly mobile and has an odd throwing motion....or was this a case of trying to finish out the season?

This is the first time we see a team get a rematch against Lamar Jackson, and I think that's a key factor. It's hard to prepare for an outlier like him one time during the regular season. But give a NFL coaching staff 2 looks in 3 weeks, and they generally can devise a much better scheme.

I think the Chargers defence is ready this time and the offence is able to move the ball enough to pull off a 20-10 win on the road.

Sunday 2:40 PM Mountain
#6 Philadelphia Eagles at #3 Chicago Bears


First game that pits two teams that didn't play yet this year. Defending Superbowl Champion Eagles have come back from the dead winning their last 3 games with Nick Foles starting to get into the playoffs. Partly thanks to the Bears who killed off the Vikings yesterday. Doug Pederson used to be the Chiefs Offensive Coordinator and took the head job in Philly and won a Superbowl. Matt Nagy took over from Pederson, is now coaching the up and coming Bears and looking to do the same.

Philly is pretty beat up on defence, but they beat the Rams in LA, a hot Texans team, and than went on the road and shut out the Red Skins. This all after a tough loss against Dallas. Things looked bleak after the Saints blew them out of the Superdome, but the Eagles didn't win the Superbowl by fluke, and have rallied back. Chicago is a team that has a ferocious defence lead by Kalil Mack, and an offence that can move the ball effectively at times.

The Eagles have last years experience to draw on, but I think they are running on fumes about now. Champions generally don't go down easily, and I think Bears might have some jitters...but Bears defence gets it done in a 13-10 game.

Today I think we get a New Orleans and New England Superbowl. Baltimore has been a trendy pick and if they can skirt by the Chargers, they could do some damage as they play New England as well as anyone in the AFC. The Rams and Saints both showed flaws down the stretch, but with home field I don't see those teams not making the NFC Championship game.
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Old 01-01-2019, 05:34 PM   #2
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Personally I’ve got a Seahawks v Chargers super bowl.

Not sure how convinced I am yet.
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Old 01-01-2019, 06:25 PM   #3
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I will be pulling for Texans, Cowboys, Chargers and Bears.
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Old 01-02-2019, 01:47 PM   #4
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I think the Ravens are one-dimensional on offence, and lucky to be in the playoffs. Browns let them off the hook with a big dropped pass and a missed FG, and the refs blew a big call (taking a CLE TD off the board).
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Old 01-02-2019, 04:24 PM   #5
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Bold prediction: the NFC championship will be played in Seattle.
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Old 01-02-2019, 04:29 PM   #6
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I effing hate Pete Carroll and his Seattle Canucks. So much, I'll be cheering for the Cowboys.... ugh.
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Old 01-02-2019, 04:30 PM   #7
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Quote:
NFL television ratings rose by 5 percent in 2018 compared with the 2017 season, according to figures released Wednesday by the league.

The uptick partially stemmed two years of ratings slides for the NFL, part of a decrease throughout the television industry. The average game in 2018 drew 15.8 million viewers, compared with 14.9 million in 2017. That number was 16.5 million for the 2016 season and 17.9 million in 2015.

Of the top 50 telecasts since the start of the 2018 season, 46 were NFL games.
http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/2...5-percent-2017
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Old 01-03-2019, 01:32 PM   #8
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Texans' DeAndre Hopkins dedicates game to Jazmine Barnes

http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/2...?sf205329722=1
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Old 01-03-2019, 02:52 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Strange Brew View Post
I will be pulling for Texans, Cowboys, Chargers and Bears.
I too will be cheering for all the teams I put money on.
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Old 01-03-2019, 05:37 PM   #10
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Seahawks, Bears, Ravens, Colts...that final one was the hardest for me, could see it going either way.

Should be an interesting playoffs, I can see any of the 6 AFC teams in the Super Bowl.
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Old 01-03-2019, 07:13 PM   #11
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Indy, Chicago, Seahawks and Chargers.
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Old 01-05-2019, 10:39 AM   #12
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Texans 30 Colts 27 (OT)
Seahawks 27 Cowboys 14
Chargers 30 Ravens 21
Bears 20 Eagles 9
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Old 01-05-2019, 11:14 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by Johnny Makarov View Post
I effing hate Pete Carroll and his Seattle Canucks. So much, I'll be cheering for the Cowboys.... ugh.
ABS, anybody but Seattle.
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Old 01-05-2019, 12:40 PM   #14
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It's amazing to me that people don't seem to remember how much worse Cowboys fans are than Seahawks. I suppose the Cowboys irrelevance for the last 20 years does that, but yeah, far, far worse than Seahawks fans. That said, go Cowboys tonight to lock in that 6 year Garrett and Prescott extensions.
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Old 01-05-2019, 12:59 PM   #15
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As a Titans fan the Colts Texans match up is torture for me but I'll go with the Texans I guess.
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Old 01-05-2019, 02:54 PM   #16
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Might be too early to give the game to Indy but it looks like this is going to be a blowout. I really expected Houston to make this game close, I even picked them to win. They look severely outmatched thus far.
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Old 01-05-2019, 02:58 PM   #17
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It's amazing to me that people don't seem to remember how much worse Cowboys fans are than Seahawks. I suppose the Cowboys irrelevance for the last 20 years does that, but yeah, far, far worse than Seahawks fans. That said, go Cowboys tonight to lock in that 6 year Garrett and Prescott extensions.
I think it just has more to do with our proximity to Seattle. Their fans are EVERYwhere in Calgary. That and we get force-fed their games, even back in the day when they were lousy. Missing out on much better matchups for Seahawks/Cardinals, so annoying.

Feeling good about my Colts pick so far, they're moving it at will

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Old 01-05-2019, 03:01 PM   #18
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Boy is that Colts offensive line ever good. They manhandled Watt and Clowney on the first two drives.
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Old 01-05-2019, 03:03 PM   #19
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This thing is going to get out of control for the Texans pretty quickly.
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Old 01-05-2019, 03:12 PM   #20
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Game over.
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