Monday, January 3, 2011

NFL Playoffs: Wild Card

AFC

New York Jets @ Indianapolis Colts - Saturday 8PM on NBC
Line - IND by 3


How the Jets can win: Run Run and Run.  The Jets need to pound the ball on the ground against the Colts using Shonn Greene as the featured back, mixing in LT and possibly even Joe McKnight if LT is ineffective.  McKnight can be used as a Reggie Bush type threat, used in the pass game.  Greene is one the main reasons the Jets got so far last year because he was running over the defenders and tiring them out, which allowed Sanchez to be effective with play action passes.  Not only will the Colts who rank 25th in run defense be worn out come late in the game, but it will kill the clock and keep Peyton Manning on the sideline for a good portion of the game, not allowing him to get in a rhythm.

How the Colts can win: Take advantage of the lack of pass rush from the Jets.  With the Jets having no pass rush, Peyton Manning will have plenty of time to sit back in the pocket and find his guys.  If the Jets don't use blitz packages throughout the game Manning will pick apart the defense.  Jets have a very good run defense, so you cant expect much out of Addai on the ground but do expect a lot of play action passes from Manning who will throw plenty of deep balls, and screen passes to Addai.


LiLbRo's Prediction: Jets will not get enough pressure on Manning and the Colts stack the box limiting the Jets run game.  Colts win 27-17.


KeithyP's Prediction:  Jets surprise the nation, upsetting the Colts 24-21 as Manning throws a late interception.

Baltimore Ravens @ Kansas City Chiefs - Sunday 1PM on CBS
Line - BAL by 3


How the Ravens can win: Stop the run and take Bowe out of the game.  Jamaal Charles is one of the most explosive offensive players in the game and seems to get 5-8 yards every time he rushes the ball.  However the Ravens ranked 5th in the NFL in rushing defense and it won't be that easy for Charles as Ray Lewis will make sure he doesn't run all over them.  Cassel may be forced to throw the ball more then he wants to because of the successful run defense of the Ravens and if the Ravens can basically eliminate Bowe from the pass game the Chiefs won't be able to move the ball.  Ray Rice needs to be used in the run and pass game to help move the ball before Flacco hits Mason and Boldin over the middle.


How the Chiefs can win: Jamaal Charles.  If the Chiefs can find a way to open holes for Charles in the run game and use him in the pass game effectively he can singly-handedly bring the Chiefs to victory.  If Charles has success early on the Ravens will focus on containing him which will allow Bowe to face single coverage and get open helping Cassel get comfortable, otherwise he will have to throw to guys like Chris Chambers, Tony Moeaki and Terrance Copper.


LiLbRo's Prediction: Ravens defense will be too much for the Chiefs offense and the Ravens win in a low scoring game 17-13.


KeithyP's Prediction:  Ray Lewis and Co. are too experienced for the up and coming Chiefs and the Ravens win, 24-17.


NFC

New Orleans Saints @ Seattle Seahawks - Saturday 4:30PM on NBC
Line - NO by 11

Week 11 - Saints 34 Seahawks 19

How the Saints can win: Dont turn the ball over.

How the Seahawks can win:  Not going to waste anyone's time here, Seahawks have no chance against the defending Super Bowl champs.

LiLbRo's Prediction: Saints prove why Seahawks don't belong hosting a playoff game, let alone being in the playoffs.  Saints win in a joke of a game, 34-10.

KeithyPs Prediction: Saints win in a laugher, 35-13.

Green Bay Packers @ Philadelphia Eagles - Sunday 4:30PM on FOX
Line - PHI by 3

Week 1 - Packers 27 Eagles 20


How the Packers can win: Get after Mike Vick.  The Packers knocked Kevin Kolb out of the game in the 1st half during their week 1 matchup, and Mike Vick earned a starting job because of what he did when he came in (16/24 for 175 and a TD, 11 rushes for 103 yards).  If the Packers use Matthews and fellow linebackers to blitz from the outside and force Vick to stay in the pocket they can really throw off his game plan.  Vick loves the inside blitz because then he has all day to run along the sidelines.  So keep Vick in the pocket and he becomes strictly a passer because you take his running ability out of the game.

How the Eagles can win: Dont allow Rodgers to beat you deep.  The Eagles know Aaron Rodgers will throw all day and there's not much they can do to stop it.  One thing they can do though is to force Rodgers to throw short passes and work his way down the field, instead of the deep ball.  Rodgers has Jennings (long of 86), Donald Driver (long of 80), James Jones (long of 66) and Jordy Nelson (long of 61) as guys he can beat you deep with.  Rodgers is mobile so blitzing might not be the best thing because he can scramble and get the yards and he's a great passer on the run.  So force Rodgers to use his RBs in the screen game and short passes over the middle and take his deep throws out of his repertoire.


LiLbRo's Prediction: Mike Vick, Lesean McCoy, DeSean Jackson and Jeremy Maclin provide too much speed for the Packers to handle in front of a Philly crowd, and the Eagles roll to a 31-23 win.


KeithyP's Prediction: Defense wins championships and the Packers D is much more talented than the Eagles.  Packers win in dramatic fashion, 30 - 27.
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