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I went out riding when the scores were 20-ish to 7, by the time we arrived at our coffee stop it was 44-45 and I had to make do with "watching" the last few minutes unfold on the NFL mobile app.

I feel bad for KC and my tips, oh well, there's always next year.

Managed to get home in time to see Drew Brees shut his eyes and hoik it downfield for an interception, if they were 3rd and long I'd say it was as good as a punt I guess.

But I'm not sure they were 3rd and long.
 
Have to feel bad for Alex Smith who played a beautiful game, only to have poor defense, and very bad defensive decisions let their whole team down. I'd be quite unhappy if I were a member of the KC offense right now.

Great gritty win for the Saints. They will have a tough time going back to Seattle, but I won't count them out. Philly has to be disappointed, but the direction they are headed is up. With Kelly's vision, and Foles establishing himself, their future looks bright.
 
Yikes, so far I'm 0/2. Ah well, both of my first picks had lost by only either one or two meagerly points, so I don't feel too bad.

I knew these Wild Cards would be tough, I'm looking forward to the Green Bay game. I'll stick with the Packers, I just don't see SF doing well in ****-cold weather conditions.
 
Both of yesterday's games were so close they could have gone either way.

I agree KC's defense let them down. Besides what you said, I actually felt frustrated when KC defenders missed tackle after tackle. Indy got a lot of yards after first contact that they shouldn't have. That is one of my pet peeves about NFL defenses in general... so many players just try to make a big hit and don't break down and don't wrap up. Failure to break down means failure to wrap up is almost assured.

Then I felt by losing Charles and Davis to injury, KC was not quite able to run the ball effectively like they were earlier.

Even with all that, KC still had a shot at the end. Smith's last throw was catchable, but the route was not the best. Credit the defender for helping nudge the receiver out of bounds, which is legal and lets the officials just worry about if both feet were in or not and whether or not the receiver had control.

Also, props to Luck for directing that comeback! That's why he was #1 overall in his draft year.

In the Iggles-Saints game, I was thinking what could Philly have done to prevent the Saints from being able to set up for the game-winning field goal. When Philly scored the last TD I thought they did it too fast (a flaw in the Kelly system maybe or the play calling), leaving too much time on the clock. It would have been better if they could have slowed down and try to eat up more clock.
 
Losing Charles, then Davis hurt. And they lost other players as well. But you look at the numbers Alex Smith had, and watch the hilights, and it was indeed the Chiefs defense that let them down. That was a career game for Smith, he answered every criticism of him, all for nothing.

I remember when Ray Lewis was young, he could tackle, but often would just smash into guys. Now, he was strong enough to get away with it. But later in his career he'd make one textbook tackle after another. The Chiefs defenders should watch video of an aging Lewis. They seemed to make little attempt to wrap guys up with their arms, tackle them by their legs. But it's worse than that because the Chiefs failed to concentrate on key offensive players and force the Colts to adapt. The final TD to TY Hilton was a perfect example. How in the hell did the CB let Hilton get behind him, with the safety so far over that he couldn't get to the play in time? KC also rarely blitzed when Luck got on a roll (typical for low risk Reid). I can't remember seeing one KC blitz in the 4th quarter.

But you're right in that Luck does deserve credit. A lot of players would have mentally quit, but he stayed focused, and played great when it counted. IF they can play with that consistency, I like their chances going to either Denver or NE. That may be a big if though.
 
The Hitch said:
I'll go for

snip

Chargers - Cincinnati.

Sandy has one of the best records against winning teams, and both Peyton's lowest scoring games were vs the bolts (only times all year they went under 30). Add in the Philly home opener curse and the mandatory loss to Washington, I can't see how they lose.

snip
10 characters:p
 
Dudes/dudettes - according to the Weather Channel it's currently -16C in Green Bay right now.

How come many of the players (on either team) are not wearing any kind of arm sleeves, or thermal underwear, in order to keep themselves warm?

I'm wearing a blankie just having to watch this. BRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR....
 
Wow, three of the four games pretty much went down to the wire, two of them won by the visitors on the last play. A postseason record in combined yards gained, one of the coldest games in history, a battle between one of the greatest offensive coaches and his heir apparent. You really couldn’t ask for more entertainment.

I agree completely with Alpe about Smith. This was one of the great postseason performances by a QB. Made all the more remarkable by not having Charles, who was not only the top rusher in the AFC, taking pressure off the QB, but also Smith’s favorite target. When KC had that big second half lead, Charles would have allowed them to slow the game down, use up the clock. Davis wasn't bad, the Chiefs did gain 150 yards on the ground, but even he went down in the 4th quarter. All season—and when he was at SF—Smith directed a conservative offense, never being asked to carry the weight on his shoulders. In this game he did have to, and came through remarkably. In addition to great passing, he gained more than 50 yards rushing.

I’ll give Hitch credit for picking SD, I sure didn’t see that coming. I knew Dalton could have a bad game, and he did, but I thought Cincy could win even if that happened. They gained over 400 yards, and were even with SD in YPP, but four turnovers were too much to overcome.

CK7 has GB's number. Now has rushed for 279 yards in two playoff games against the Pack, averaging about 14 yards per carry. Though the game was close, SF had a big edge in YPP, and having Crabtree back made a big difference. But GB's future is bright. I don't think lacy was 100%,but he gained 80 yards against a very good rushing defense. Add that to Rodgers, and the Pack offense should explode again next year.

Unlikely, but suppose SD and Indy meet in the AFC title game? Two teams that got where they are by beating KC’s B team.:)

Next week's picks (I'm 2-2 so far, but I don't really count the KC-Indy game, because if someone had told me Charles wasn't playing, of course I would have picked Indy):

SE over NO. Won't be quite the blowout of a few weeks ago, but Seahawks will get it done, and I think win by at least 10.

SF over CA. Very tough game to pick. The defenses are about the same, I'd say CA is a little better, but with Crabtree back, and Kaepernick playing well, SF has a big edge in offense. Seventeen points is probably enough to win. I think the biggest problem for SF may be an emotional letdown after a very tough win at GB. Coming into the sunny south, it's easy to think this will be an easier game, but it won't be. CA is really the opposite challenge of GB, a weak offense but a stifling defense.

OTOH, Carolina is 0-3 after a bye week under Riverboat Ron. This year, they played one of their worst games after the bye, losing 22-6 to AZ. The following week, they took off, playing great for the remainder of the season, except for a big loss at NO.

Denver over SD. SD has held the Broncos under 30 points twice this season, and scored 27 vs. a Cincy defense that is much better than Denver's. But the Chargers' pass D is still very poor. When Dalton wasn't self-destructing, he was throwing for more than 300 yards. I think Manning solves it this time.

NE over Indy. Indy played about as well as it could against a KC team riddled with injuries, and still barely won. If Alex Smith could torch them for 350 yards and four TDs, what will Brady do? Weather will be very different, but both teams rely heavily on the passing game.
 
0 for 4.

well done me.

really enjoyed the packers/9ers game, it looked cold and I know it was cold but I was still surprised not to see a row of dudes with no shirts and G O P A C K E R S spelt out in big letters on their chest(s).

caught the end of the bengals/chargers (it started at 2am our time, way too early to get up for), couldn't believe how empty the stadium was by the end of the game, everyone beat the rush.
 
Merckx index said:
(I'm 2-2 so far, but I don't really count the KC-Indy game, because if someone had told me Charles wasn't playing, of course I would have picked Indy):
Charles was knocked out during the game, so I don't think you get a do-over.

Perhaps Foxy could give us a ruling.
 
Merckx index said:
...Suppose SD and Indy meet in the AFC title game? Two teams that got where they are by beating KC’s B team.:)
Though I'm likely to pick against both teams, it wouldn't stun me if both SD and Indy won.

leftover pie said:
Caught the end of the bengals/chargers..., couldn't believe how empty the stadium was by the end of the game..
This irk's me to no end when I see this in a playoff game. Now, if it were howling wind and freezing temps, and it were a blowout due to your team's mistakes, maybe I could see it. But the Bengals were actually in the game until late.

A quick weather forecast shows it could be nice in Denver. Highs in the 50's (10c) during the day, close to freezing at night with very light snow but nothing extreme.

It will probably be in the 40's for Foxboro, and not bad at all.

Light rain, overcast and cool temps in the 40's for typical Seattle weather.

Rain and moderately warm temp in the 50's for Carolina. If the rain is fairly heavy, this is the only game where weather could be a factor. But both teams are grinders, and don't depend on air assaults, so I don't see it benefiting either club.
 
May 27, 2012
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Merckx index said:
SF over CA. Very tough game to pick. The defenses are about the same, I'd say CA is a little better, but with Crabtree back, and Kaepernick playing well, SF has a big edge in offense. Seventeen points is probably enough to win. I think the biggest problem for SF may be an emotional letdown after a very tough win at GB. Coming into the sunny south, it's easy to think this will be an easier game, but it won't be. CA is really the opposite challenge of GB, a weak offense but a stifling defense.

OTOH, Carolina is 0-3 after a bye week under Riverboat Ron. This year, they played one of their worst games after the bye, losing 22-6 to AZ. The following week, they took off, playing great for the remainder of the season, except for a big loss at NO.
I do think our D is better, but Kaepernick is playing better than Cam. I fear this game will go down to our defense being on the field too much because our offense goes 3 and out continually.
 
It's quite possible that the Carolina-SF game is going to be one where it's 20-19 with five minutes left in the game, and whichever team can execute (or stop) a drive late will win. It seems more likely that the 49ers can do this, but that doesn't mean they will.

I also am not expecting Seattle to blowout New Orleans like they did last time. I think the Saints weren't very prepared for that game, especially for the noise. They will adapt this time. e that hand signals, silent snap counts, hurry-up, etc. I still think Seattle is going to win, unless their egos are so high, they expect to win easily, they've just got more tools. But the game very well could be a 33-27 win.

The AFC games are very intriguing. Like Merckx, I do think Manning is going to solve the Chargers defense this time. He won't have a 500 yard 7 TD game, but he will do enough to keep them moving forward and into the end zone for more than 20 points. It wouldn't shock me if they won by double digits, but listening to Rivers on the radio this morning, he seemed well aware that last game was meaningless and Denver was going to be difficult to beat. He called Manning the best quarterback ever, the Broncos the best team in the NFL, and they had their work cut out for them. I'll refine this pick as the week goes, but right now I'm guessing something akin to 34-24 Denver.

The game I'm maybe most interested in is Indy-NE. Providing both teams are "on". As they have both had some bad quarters, plays, games even. But at times both teams look like they could win the Superbowl. I just don't think either team can string it together enough to do so. And this week, one team has to lose. My gut tells me the Colts can't overcome playing in Foxboro, and with the extra week to prepare with the cast of no-name substitutes, Brady will shred the Colts defense as much as Alex Smith did. Unless the weather gets nasty, I like the Patriots to jump out to a lead, score over 40, and win.
 
May 27, 2012
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The best news for the Panthers is that all of the ESPN "experts" are picking San Fran...of course, so is most everyone else. We play better as underdogs.
 
Jun 19, 2009
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Alpe d'Huez said:
It's quite possible that the Carolina-SF game is going to be one where it's 20-19 with five minutes left in the game, and whichever team can execute (or stop) a drive late will win. It seems more likely that the 49ers can do this, but that doesn't mean they will.
San Francisco may have a problem with Carolina's defense. Newton is more mobile/physical and may be the right guy to improvise...for a short time. It may be at the end of the game that things get excitable but both quarterbacks are impulsive. I don't think it will be quite that close because on of the two will screw up....that would be Kap, first.

I also am not expecting Seattle to blowout New Orleans like they did last time. I think the Saints weren't very prepared for that game, especially for the noise. They will adapt this time. e that hand signals, silent snap counts, hurry-up, etc. I still think Seattle is going to win, unless their egos are so high, they expect to win easily, they've just got more tools. But the game very well could be a 33-27 win.

Seattle's talking humble and appropriately in awe of Drew Brees. They sound like they know it won't be easy. They do have the defense to grind NO up, though. Look for the scoring differential in the 2nd half.
 

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