It is a good thing I don't have enough money to gamble, because I would have gotten cleaned out this weekend. The only game I picked correctly was the Baltimore win (I even nailed the exact score...No big deal.) Some quick thoughts about the weekend's games:
• Really Carolina? Jake Delhomme set a new record for most times in one game where a pro NFL quarterback looked worse than a playground league, flag football veteran.
• I'd be more comfortable converting a 3rd-and-short with a Larry Fitzgerald prayer than a Brandon Jacobs' scamper.
• At the start of this season, did anyone think a 9-7 Arizona Cardinals would be hosting a 9-6-1 Philadelphia Eagles team in the NFC Championship?
• The Eagles have the most overrated offense of the remaining teams, but also the most underrated defense.
• Joe Buck's announcing is like listening to paint dry. By the second quarter of the Eagles vs. Giants, I just watched the game with "Lord of the Rings: Return of the King" as the audio. Gandalf would be an unreal sideline reporter.
• Donovan McNabb is getting a little bit too cocky. At the end of the Minnesota game, he caught the last pass and played with the ball and this past game against the Giants, he picked up a phone on the Giant's sideline when he had all but won it. Karma, my friends always comes back to haunt you.
• If nothing else, I hope Darren Sproles gets a little more respect after his performances. He's one of the main reasons I don't get into fights when I go out to bars. Imagine seeing this 5'5” guy is talking trash, looking flashy, and he bumps into you, looking for a fight. Odds are, he's a little punk and you win, but maybe just maybe, it’s Darren Sproles, or Oscar De La Hoya, in which case you may be the guy with a glass eye.
Philadelphia Eagles (9-6-1) @ Arizona Cardinals (9-7) 3 PM
I liked Atlanta over Arizona. I loved Carolina against Arizona. Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice? Shame on me. There won't be a third time. Arizona is going to win this game, and I'm on the bandwagon.
The Cardinals somehow find themselves hosting the NFC championship against a team they matchup well with. I think Kurt Warner is going to do what he does best and put up at least three passing TD's. Philly's defense is great, but Arizona's offense can pick apart any team if it's firing on all cylinders.
Philly's offense also is more erratic that Rick Ankiel pitching batting practice. They haven't established the run in multiple important games, and they've really relied on their defense to set them up for most of their opportunities.
Philly should be favored by about two points, but I think Arizona wins this game in the third quarter and then Philadelphia implodes trying to come back.
Final score: Arizona Cardinals 27 Philadelphia Eagles 17
Baltimore Ravens (11-5) @ Pittsburgh Steelers (12-4) 6:30 PM
This game is an absolute toss up. Pittsburgh looked convincing and healthy against San Diego. Baltimore beat a tough Titans team on the road. Both defenses are downright nasty and neither offense is particularly outstanding.
Both teams will fare well in Pittsburgh's quagmire (giggity) of a field. Picking a winner in this game is sheer luck as far as I'm concerned. That's why I thought about the best thing about either team, and I decided that Baltimore should win because the TV show on HBO, "The Wire", is filmed there. It is by far the best five seasons of television to date, and that's why the Ravens are going to win a defensive struggle with a late Joe Flacco touchdown to Derrick Mason.
Final Score: Baltimore Ravens 16 Pittsburgh Steelers 13