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NFL Postseason Predictions 2009

Posted by Jack Deus on September 12, 2009

I’ve already predicted how the regular season for the NFC (link here) and AFC (link here) will unfold. Now it’s time for the postseason predictions; both the playoff predictions and the awards predictions.

PLAYOFF PREDICTIONS

NFC

Round 1

(1) Philadelphia Eagles and (2) Carolina Panthers-bye

(6) New Orleans Saints – 34 @ (3) Minnesota Vikings – 21. Drew Brees getting to play in a dome for the first round of the playoffs = no home field advantage for the Vikings. Brett Favre continues his late season nose-dive and throws too many costly picks.

(5) Dallas Cowboys – 21 @ (4) Seattle Seahawks -20. Tomy Romo goes into one of the toughest places to play and lets it affect him for the first three quarters, but finally overcomes the pressure and leads Dallas to two fourth quarter touchdown drives. The cycle won’t be truly complete because Wade Phillips won’t let Romo be the holder for the clenching extra point try, but he’ll take the victory none-the-less.

Round 2

(6) New Orleans Saints – 27 @ (1) Philadelphia Eagles – 23. Drew Brees continues to put up sick playoff numbers and Reggie Bush helps the team the by giving them great field position and six points with his kickoff and punt returns. Philly fans boo Donovan McNabb for his continued ability to not win in the playoffs (completely forgetting that even making it to the playoffs is a feat in and of itself).

(2) Carolina Panthers – 24, (5) Dallas Cowboys – 21, in overtime. The NFL’s stupid overtime rules eliminate the Cowboys without them even getting a chance to score, as Carolina wins the coin toss and DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart run the Panthers the 45 yards they need to get into field goal position.

NFC Championship Game

(6) New Orleans Saints – 24 @ (2) Carolina Panthers – 10. The Panthers have no answer for Drew Brees, and he gets the Saints off to a huge early lead, forcing the Panthers to all but abandon their rushing game. The Saints are able to double cover Steve Smith, effectively eliminating any offense Carolina can hope to put together.

AFC

Round 1

(1) New England Patriots and (2) San Diego Chargers– bye

(6) Houston Texans – 20 @ (3) Pittsburgh Steelers– 17. The Texans won’t be satisfied enough to just make the playoffs, they will go into the defending champion Steelers’ house and shock the world.

(4) Indianapolis Colts – 23, (5) Tennessee Titans – 10. The Colts will take the rubber match of the season series by not letting the Titans offense keep up with Peyton Manning and the rest of the Colts offense.

Round 2

(1) New England Patriots – 31, (6) Houston Texans– 17. The Texans magical season will end in Foxboro when they can’t find an answer for Tom Brady, Randy Moss, and Wes Welker.

(2) San Diego Chargers – 34, (4) Indianapolis Colts – 28. In a battle of high powered offenses, the Shawne Merriman led Chargers D will find a way to stop Peyton Manning just enough to send the Charger to the AFC title game.

AFC Championship Game

(2) San Diego Chargers – 13, (1) New England Patriots – 9. Cold weather and snow will neutralize both team’s passing games. The Chargers’ LaDainian Tomlinson and Darren Sproles are much better running backs than whoever New England will march out there for that particular game.

 

Super Bowl

San Diego Chargers – 41, New Orleans Saints – 38. The two highest scoring offenses in the NFL will make Super Bowl XLIV one of the most entertaining ever. This game will basically come down to whichever team gets the ball last, so I give the edge to the team that has the better defense: San Diego.

 

Individual Awards

NFL MVP-Drew BreesSaints. Voters will be stupid not to give the MVP award to Brees when he breaks the single season record for passing yards this year.

Runners-up: Tom BradyPatriots, Adrian PetersonVikings.

Offensive Player of the Year-Drew BreesSaints. See above.

Runners-up: Adrian PetersonVikings, Larry FitzgeraldCardinals.

Defensive Player of the Year-Shawne MerrimanChargers. He will play “lights out” this year to prove last year was an injury fluke.

Runners-up: Albert HaynesworthRedskins, Mario WilliamsTexans.

Coach of the Year-Gary KubiakTexans. How do you not give the award to the coach that led his team to the playoffs for the first time in their history?

Runners-up: Sean PaytonSaints, Mike McCarthyPackers.

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NFC Predictions 2009

Posted by Jack Deus on August 25, 2009

There are lots of questions going into the 2009 NFL season:  Can the Steelers repeat as Super Bowl Champs? Has Tom Brady recovered enough to lead the Patriots back to the playoffs? Can Matthew Stafford lead the Lions to even a single win? How will Brett Favre and Michael Vick do on their new teams, the Vikings and Eagles? These and many other questions will factor in to how I will predict the final season standings for all 8 divisions, as well as the playoff match-ups and winners. Below are my NFC predictions. Click here for my AFC predictions.

East

1. Philadelphia Eagles–  If Donovan McNabb and Brian Westbrook stay healthy (which is a big if) the Eagles should be very good this year. With the addition of a few rookies at skill positions (Jeremy Maclin at WR and LeSean McCoy at RB) and the addition of Michael Vick, opposing defenses will have a lot of players they have to scheme for, which will cause a lot of sleepless nights for opposing D Coordinators.

2. Dallas Cowboys – Playing in Jerry Jones’ new billion dollar baby should get the ‘Boys at least a win or two when opposing teams come in and just stare in awe at the ginormous TV above their heads, leaving the Cowboys free to rack up thousands of yards and hundreds of points. OK, maybe not, but with T.O. and Jessica Simpson out of the picture, it is finally time for Tony Romo to step up and show everyone he can finish a season, and I think he will. He still has his favorite target, Jason Witten, and T.O.’s absence should also help out Roy Williams , who should become the big-play threat he was drafted to be.

3. NY GiantsThe Giants have a serious need at WR, now that they have officially cut ties with Plaxico Burress. Last year, the Giants were 11-1 to start off the season, but finished it 1-4, including the playoff loss to the Eagles. Guess what the difference was: Plaxico Burress wasn’t with them. Unless Eli Manning can prove he is worth his huge new contract extension and turn his OK receivers into good or great receivers, the Giants will miss the playoffs this year, although they will still finish above .500.

4. Washington Redskins– It pains me to put my boys in this spot, but I have to be realistic. The Redskins defense should be a juggernaut this year, with the addition of Albert Haynesworth, but it is put up or shut up time for Jim Zorn and Jason Campbell and I just don’t see them improving enough this year for either one to save their jobs. On the bright side of that coin, Bill Cowher is only a year a way from donning the Redskins colors and hopefully putting an end to the coaching carousel that has been going around and around and around since Dan Snyder bought the team in 1999.

North

1. Minnesota Vikings– With the addition of Brett Favre and, perhaps more importantly, Percy Harvin the Vikings passing game should be better and actually force defenses to not crowd Adrian Peterson. He may have his best year yet. And for you Favre naysayers, he only plays in two potentially cold-weather games the whole season, at Green Bay on November 1 and at Chicago December 28. That is a very favorable schedule for an old arm to last the full season.

2. Chicago Bears– The Bears only finished one game behind the Vikings last year with Kyle Orton and Rex Grossman as their QBs. Say what you want about Jay Cutler being a whiner who forced his way out of Denver, he is a better quarterback than Orton and Grossman put together. RB Matt Forte and WR Devin Hester will be even better this season than they were last season, which is a very good thing for Bears fans.

3. Green Bay Packers– I just don’t see any additions to the Packers that makes me think they will improve drastically enough to pass either of the Bears or the Vikings. All three division rivals upgraded their QB spot, and even though none of the new QBs are as good as Aaron Rodgers, all three teams did improve, where it seems Green Bay stayed pretty much the same.

4. Detroit Lions The Lions will not finish 0-16 again this year. There are too many winnable games on the schedule for them to lay another goose egg. Unfortunately, their first win won’t come until after their bye week when they get St. Louis at home. If Matthew Stafford can’t lead the Lions over the Rams at home with two weeks to plan, then maybe they can pull out a win against Cleveland three weeks later, at Cincy two weeks after that, or at San Fran the second to last week of the season. For the sake of Lions fans everywhere, though, I hope the losing streak doesn’t reach week 16 when they play the 49ers.

South

1. Carolina Panthers– Until someone proves they can stop the RB tandem of DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart you can’t pick against the Panthers. Preseason injuries to Steve Smith and Stewart have me a little worried that the Panthers won’t be able to repeat as NFC South champs, but with a bye week in week 4, health shouldn’t be a big concern for them yet.

2. New Orleans SaintsDrew Brees is one of the best quarterbacks in the league, and he will find a way to win a lot of the games they lost last year. Six of their 8 losses last year came by a combined total of 18 points. With the emergence of Pierre Thomas as a reliable RB threat, the Saints will also be able to do more things better suited to Reggie Bush‘s talents. Opposing defense will not like the week they look at the schedule and see New Orleans is their opponent.

3. Atlanta FalconsMatt Ryan will probably be a better QB this year than last year when he took his team to the playoffs and Michael Turner will be the same dominating force in the backfield, but opposing defenses will also have more film on these two and be better prepared when they play them. I predict Ryan  and Turner will look statistically worse than they did last year and the Falcons won’t make the playoffs because defenses won’t be surprised by them nearly as much as they were last year.

4. Tampa Bay Buccaneers– Questions at quarterback will doom this team all season. When Kansas State product Josh Freeman is a viable candidate for the starting QB job as a rookie you know the team is in trouble. Freeman was a decent-enough QB for the Wildcats last year, but he is not the answer for the Bucs.

West

1. Seattle SeahawksMatt Hasselbeck should be back to his dominant form. They have a receiving core with Nate Burleson and T.J Houshmandzadeh that is actually comprised of NFL caliber players. Julius Jones and T.J. Duckett form a formidable backfield. They have all of the offensive keys to get back to their rightful place on top of this weak division.

2. Arizona Cardinals– Even though they made it to the Super Bowl, I don’t see the Cardinals improving upon their 9-7 record from last year, especially since they won’t sweep Seattle like they did last year and probably won’t sweep San Francisco either. I may be eating these words if Kurt Warner and Anquan Boldin both stay healthy the whole season, if Larry Fitzgerald plays at the same level as he did last year, and if Chris Wells compliments Tim Hightower in the backfield. That is a lot of ifs that need to take place.

3. San Francisco 49ersShaun Hill, Alex Smith, Damon Huard. That is the 49ers depth chart at QB. Enough said. If the 49ers can find a way to get Michael Crabtree into camp, and quick, and if Frank Gore stays healthy, the 49ers may be able to finish the season around .500, but it doesn’t look good.

4. St. Louis RamsMarc Bulger leads a team that is a far cry from “The Greatest Show on Turf” and that is assuming he stays healthy enough to lead the team at all. His receiving core consists of Donnie Avery and a bunch of scrubs, which means opposing teams will load the box and stop Steven Jackson from having a real impact on their season. If not for the upsets they pulled in weeks 6 and 7 last year the Rams would have joined the Lions as a winless team, and their prospects don’t seem much better this year.

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NFL Postseason Predictions

Posted by Jack Deus on December 29, 2008

Yesterday marked the conclusion of another exciting NFL regular season with two games that ended up being bonus playoff games (Denver at San Diego and Dallas at Philly), with the winner moving on and the loser staying home. The ended up being pretty crappy games with the home team blowing out the road team, but the fans in San Diego and Philly wouldn’t have it any other way.

Wild Card Round
AFC

Indianapolis (12-4) at(really?) San Diego (8-8)
The first of two games where the road team is better than the home team (at least according to record). No matter where this game is played the Colts are just going to prove too much for the banged up Chargers. San Diego’s star running back, LaDanian Tomlinson, tweaked his groin in the Denver game, and while he says he will be ready for the game Saturday, one has to wonder how effective he will actually be: Indianapolis 38-San Diego 28

Baltimore (11-5) at Miami (11-5)
Even though Baltimore beat Miami 27-13 in week 7, this game is being played in Miami because they won their division. What a bunch of bologna. But, much like the other AFC wild-card game the venue won’t matter. Miami is a good team, but they benefited from a pretty weak schedule to get into the playoffs. They beat lowly Seattle, Oakland, St. Louis, San Francisco, and Kansas City by a combined 20 points. Repeat of Week 7: Baltimore 27-Miami 13

NFC
Atlanta (11-5) at Arizona (9-7)
Not that I’m claiming a conspiracy or anything, but the NFL gift-wrapped this home playoff game for the Cardinals by having the stupid rule about the division winners being higher seeds than the wild-cards, as well as by having Arizona be in arguably the worst division in NFL history. Arizona’s (at times) high-powered offense will keep them in the game, but Atlanta will wear them down: Atlanta 31-Arizona 23

Philadelphia (9-6-1) at Minnesota (10-6)
If anyone tells you they have a good feeling picking either team to win this game they are either lying or on crack (or both). Neither of these teams has been consistent by any stretch of the imagination. I think Philly will find a way to stop Adrian Peterson forcing Minnesota to throw the ball, which won’t work out well for them: Philly 27-Minnesota 14

Divisional Round
AFC

Baltimore at Tennessee
Tennessee’s defense will give Joe Flacco fits all day, and if Baltimore can find a way to stop the Tennessee run this should prove to be a low scoring, defensive battle: Tennessee 13-Baltimore 9

Indianapolis at Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh’s running backs are too banged up to get anything consistent going and Marvin Harrison will know he has to have a good post season to get paid well next year so he and Peyton Manning will have a vintage day: Indy 28-Pittsburgh 20

NFC
Philly at Carolina
There is no way Philly will show up in full force two weeks in a row nor be able to stop Steve Smith and the Carolina running backs: Carolina 31-Philly 14

Atlanta at NY Giants
No rookie quarterback is supposed to be able to travel to a cold weather stadium and win a playoff game, and Matt Ryan will prove this rule. Also, Brandon Jacobs should be well rested with the bye-week and will be able to run all over Atlanta’s D. Atlanta’s running game will keep this game close, however: NY Giants 20-Atlanta 17

Championship Round
Indianapolis at Tennessee
Indy is peaking and Tennessee will be coming into this game banged up and bruised from the Baltimore game. Add that to the fact that Indy will be stacking the box and turning this into a quarterback battle, which Peyton would win over either Kerry Collins or Vince Young 9 times out of 10, including this time: Indy 31-Tennessee 21

Carolina at NY Giants
The Giants ran all over Carolina in week 15, but they won’t be able to do that again. Besides, the world isn’t ready for a Manning vs Manning Super Bowl: Carolina 27-NY Giants 23

Super Bowl
Indianapolis Colts vs Carolina Panthers
Just like he did to Chicago to get his first Super Bowl ring, Peyton Manning is going to eat up and spit out the Carolina D: Indy 38-Carolina 20

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