Some ‘big’ news in the NFL today. The Mueller report on the Ray Rice incident was released. Surprisingly the man the NFL hired to investigate them found in their favor. No one saw that coming. Anyways, here’s the Divisional Round:
Baltimore Ravens at New England Patriots: The Ravens are coming into this game confident. In 2012, the Ravens came into New England and walked away with a win. In fact, the Patriots are 1-2 against the Ravens in the playoffs in their history with both losses coming in recently. Unfortunately for the Ravens, the Patriots have the number one defense in the NFL this time around. The Patriots have been cold the last few weeks nearly losing to the Jets mainly because Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski have been in and out. Tom Brady can’t do anything without them, so he’s been struggling. The Ravens are getting hot just at the right time. However, at the end of the day this Patriots team has a better defense than what the Ravens have faced in the past. I really hope I’m wrong, but the safe pick is Patriots win.
Carolina Panthers at Seattle Seahawks: This one will be relatively short. The Seahawks are a legitimate team, the Panthers are still streaky. Sure, the Panthers have had close games against the Seahawks in recent history, but both of those games were in Carolina. The bottom line is Cam Newton and the Panthers are no match for the Seahawks defense. Russell Wilson is easy to stop if the Panthers contain properly, but the defense will set Wilson up in positions that even he can’t screw up. Seahawks win.
Dallas Cowboys at Green Bay Packers: Here’s the match up that the NFL wanted. Unfortunately for the Detroit Lions, they were in the way of the Roger Goodell’s wishes and thus had to be thrown away. Everything about this match up screams rigged. Aaron Rodgers has a “calf tear.” Apparently it takes two weeks to diagnosis a calf tear with the best doctors in the world examining it. The NFL is setting this game up so that the Cowboys can win but no one will blame Rodgers who will still end up with the MVP award over J.J. Watt who actually deserves it. Also, if the Packers win (which is far more likely) Rodgers will be a lock for MVP because of his “injury.” Until he has visible mobility problems, don’t believe the hype. This game feels more like the reality TV show than a football game. Packers win.
Indianapolis Colts at Denver Broncos: Finally back to actual football. Peyton Manning has been struggling recently, but it was clear he just needed some rest. With a little rest from the bye week and a big game against his former team Manning should be back to form. The Broncos will also need to rely on their run game to get past the Colts again. The Broncos defense is the biggest point of concern. In the first meeting with the Colts, the defense gave up after Manning led the team to a nice lead. If the defense is not careful, Andrew Luck might be able to comeback once they stop playing. All-in-all, the Broncos have the better quarterback; and at the end of the day that will propel them to victory. Broncos win.