NFL Playoff Picks: Predicting Each Divisional Round Game

Donald Wood@@Donald_WoodFeatured ColumnistJanuary 8, 2013

GREEN BAY, WI - JANUARY 05:  Quarterback Aaron Rodgers #12 of the Green Bay Packers celebrates after fullback John Kuhn #30 scores on a three-yard touchdown run in the second quarter against the Minnesota Vikings during the NFC Wild Card Playoff game at Lambeau Field on January 5, 2013 in Green Bay, Wisconsin.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

With the Divisional Round of the 2013 NFL Playoffs ready to kick off this weekend, it’s already time to pick the winners of each and every game.

Two games Saturday and two games Sunday make this a great weekend for playoff football. Each of the following games has a trip to a conference championship on the line so hardcore and casual NFL fans alike shouldn’t miss a second of this amazing action.

Put the beer on ice, put the keys out of sight and kick your feet up in preparation for a football frenzy!



Baltimore Ravens at Denver Broncos

While the Baltimore Ravens are riding the emotional wave caused by the announced retirement of veteran defensive leader Ray Lewis, they will be heading to Denver to square off with a Broncos team that is more talented on both sides of the ball.

A big win over Indianapolis can’t prepare the Ravens for the battle they’ll face in the Divisional Round.

Led by Peyton Manning and Denver’s fifth-ranked pass offense (283.4 yards per game), the Broncos will steal the win at home and send Lewis and the Ravens back to Baltimore on a sour note.

Prediction: Denver 27, Baltimore 17



Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers

In what should be an amazing matchup of NFC powerhouses, the Green Bay Packers will travel to Candlestick Park to square off with the defensive-minded San Francisco 49ers. With Green Bay’s defense starting to step up, the scoring in this game will be much lower than anticipated.

Despite both offensive units having great players and unique schemes, the always talented 49ers defense (fourth in the NFL against the pass and the run) will limit Aaron Rodgers and the Packers’ offense.

As well as San Fran’s offensive unit has played, the return of veterans like Charles Woodson and Sam Shields to the Packers secondary will keep this game low scoring; Green Bay will steal the win in the final seconds of the matchup with a field goal.

Prediction: Green Bay 20, San Francisco 17



Seattle Seahawks at Atlanta Falcons

After a close win over the Washington Redskins in the Wild Card Round, the Seattle Seahawks have no time to rest as they will travel to Atlanta and play the always tough Falcons in the Georgia Dome.

While Matt Ryan and the entire Falcons offensive unit have played great all year, they are even more dangerous in their own building. The team just needs to carry that play over into the postseason now.

Seattle has a tough defense and a rushing attack amongst the best in the league, so If the Seahawks can control the pace of the game and force Atlanta to play a slower tempo, there is a chance the Falcons could lose their rhythm and find themselves with another playoff loss.

Atlanta will shake the curse late in the game and steal a heart-stopping win.

Prediction: Atlanta 34, Seattle 30



Houston Texans at New England Patriots

While the Houston Texans should be excited because they survived a good effort from the Cincinnati Bengals in the Wild Card Round, the team should be terrified for the matchup against the New England Patriots this Sunday.

With Houston playing as poorly as they have all season in the passing attack and in the secondary, the Patriots will use their impressive offensive assault to put the Texans on their heels the whole game.

As long as New England’s defense can keep Houston from finding a rhythm through the air—Arian Foster will get his yards on the ground against the Pats—there is little doubt that Tom Brady and the Patriots will advance once again to the AFC Championship.

Prediction: New England 41, Houston 31



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