NFL Playoff Predictions, Divisional Week Edition

Gene StrotherCorrespondent IIIJanuary 15, 2011

FOXBORO, MA - DECEMBER 06:  Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots throws a pass to Deion Branch #84 against the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium on December 6, 2010 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Fools rush in where angels fear to tread. That said, let's review my wild card week predictions and brace ourselves for another fearless safari in the NFL playoff jungle.

Here is how we did last week:

New Orleans Saints @ Seattle Seahawks

The Seahawks upset the Super Bowl-defending Saints, 41–36. I had the Saints winning. (Who didn't?) I also had the Seahawks covering the ten-point spread. And I took the over on the 44.5 total points. I was right on two of the three categories.

Using a simple point system that subtracts one point for guessing wrong and adds one point for getting it right, my score on this game: One point.

New York Jets @ Indianapolis Colts

The Jets won the game, 17–16. With just a three—point spread, it was not much of an upset.

I had the Colts winning and covering the spread. Wrong, wrong. I did take the under on the 44.5 total points. Got that one right.

My score on this game: -1.

Baltimore Colts @ Kansas City Chiefs

The Ravens spanked the Chiefs, 30–7. I didn't see that one coming. I had the Chiefs, three-point underdogs, winning the game outright. I did take the under on the 40.5 points scored, so there was some redemption.

My score: -1

Green Bay Packer @ Philadelphia Eagles

The Packers won the game, 21–16. They were 2.5 point underdogs. I had Green Bay winning. Yay, me. I did, unfortunately take the over on the 46.5. (Insert buzzer sound here.)

My score: 1

I ended up dead even for the week. Plenty ventured, nothing gained. (Not that I actually had any money on the outcomes. I am not that foolish.)

Now for this week's match-ups. Once again, the winner is highlighted in bold. My pick against the line is underlined. (For example, I like New Orleans to win, but Seattle to cover, thus New Orleans is bold and Seattle is underlined.) The over/under is indicated by the ↑ and ↓ arrow. If you cannot figure out which arrow means which, please stay away from all sharp objects.

Date Favorite Line Underdog Over/Under
1/15/2011 Pittsburgh -3 Baltimore 37↑
1/15/2011 Atlanta -1.5 Green Bay 44↑
1/15/2011 Chicago -10 Seattle 43↓
1/15/2011 New England -9 NY Jets 45↓

As you can see, I took the favorites in each game. I expect that week off to pay off. Seattle's fairy tale ends today. We will have to wait another year for Rex Ryan's verbal assaults on his next opponent. Pittsburgh will manage enough offense to send the Ravens home. And Atlanta always wins at home with quarterback Matt Ryan, who is 20–2 in the home dome.

The best games of the weekend promise to be in Pittsburgh and Atlanta, with the Ravens and Packers vying for the weekend upsets.

I welcome your predictions and I caution you making too much of mine. I have been fooled before.

Never mind that. Rush in.