With Wild Card Weekend approaching fast, the excitement over the first round of the 2013 NFL playoffs has football fans across the country ready to enjoy a schedule full of elite action.
After a long 17-week season, the battle for Super Bowl glory begins this week with an unpredictable slate of games.
There is so much on the line on both Saturday and Sunday that even the most casual football fan won’t want to miss a second of this amazing action.
For the full Wild Card Weekend schedule, go to NFL.com.
Cincinnati Bengals at Houston Texans
Saturday, Jan. 5 at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBC
Despite being the home team with the better overall record, the Houston Texans have lost three of their last four games and are squaring off with the red-hot Cincinnati Bengals to start the postseason.
With the Bengals winning seven of their last eight games and playing as well on the defensive side of the ball as they are on the offensive side, Cincinnati will stun the Texans on Saturday with a huge upset victory.
Prediction: Cincinnati 30, Houston 27
Minnesota Vikings at Green Bay Packers
Saturday, Jan. 5 at 8 p.m. ET on NBC
The Green Bay Packers and the Minnesota Vikings have already squared off twice this season, but it was the Week 17 meeting between these two teams that has set the stage for what could be the biggest upset of the entire weekend.
While Green Bay stole the first meeting and still has the more potent offensive attack, the Vikings' victory over the Packers less than a week ago has increased the possibility that Minnesota could do it once again and advance in the playoffs.
Green Bay suppresses Adrian Peterson just enough to steal the win.
Prediction: Green Bay 24, Minnesota 20
Indianapolis Colts at Baltimore Ravens
Sunday, Jan. 6 at 1 p.m. ET on CBS
There is no doubting just how great the Baltimore Ravens can be when the team is healthy and playing as a unit, but injuries have destroyed any sort of momentum that the squad was trying to build at the close of the season.
With four losses in the team’s last five games, the Ravens backed into the playoffs and are in serious trouble against an underrated Indianapolis Colts team.
If rookie QB Andrew Luck can keep his composure under the bright lights of the NFL playoffs, the Colts have enough momentum—the team won nine of their last 11 games—to shock one of the AFC’s favorites for the Super Bowl.
Prediction: Indianapolis 34, Baltimore 27
Seattle Seahawks at Washington Redskins
Sunday, Jan. 6 at 4:30 p.m. ET on FOX
As talented as the Washington Redskins are, and as well as the team has played through the 2012 season, they have not faced a defensive unit playing as well as the Seattle Seahawks are right now.
The last team that any NFC squad wants to see this postseason is the run-heavy, hard-hitting Seahawks.
Washington’s offense will score a few points—most of the 31 projected points will come in a fourth-quarter comeback attempt—but it will be Seattle's underrated offense, led by rookie Russell Wilson, that destroys the 30th-ranked Redskins’ pass defense (281.9 yards allowed per game).
Prediction: Seattle 41, Washington 31
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