NFL Playoffs, First Round Previews: Who Can Beat the Pressure?

Thomas H.Correspondent IDecember 30, 2008

The playoffs have come after the regular season ended wildly, but the wildness didn't stop there.

The wild games are just going to keep coming.

The Dolphins barely made it to the playoffs through the tough AFC East. The Ravens pushed for their wild-card spot, barely missing out on their own division.

Now the two go head to head. Both freshly born quarterbacks, Flacco versus Pennington. Both went from a bad season to a good one. The big difference? Defense. The Ravens have a strong, respected defense, while the Dolphins haven't looked as impressive. I give this to the Ravens.

Baltimore: 21, Miami: 17

Talk about two hot teams, both the Colts and Chargers have won at least five straight. Except, the Colts have a bit of a longer list...

Peyton Manning, a listed MVP candidate, against the quieter Phillip Rivers, who led his team here on his shoulder. The Colts had one of the easiest schedules, while the Chargers just had weird games (the lights out game, the London game, the Broncos' last-second win, and the Panthers' last-second win).

But, the Chargers came out of nowhere, and they want to keep themselves hidden. They come into this game and take down the Colts so that they will be heard.

San Diego: 31, Indianapolis: 24

The Philadelphia Eagles come into Minnesota to face the Vikings in a good one. Can the Vikings keep their respect and their over lookers guessing with a huge win? Tarvaris Jackson's new self might make that happen. He brought back their season to take the division (just like I picked he would in my second article!).

McNabb had a child midseason, ever since then, he has been on fire! They came out of nowhere and have come back from that tie and then the "I didn't know there were ties" situation.

The thing is, the Eagle are on fire and aren't afraid to say it.

Philadelphia: 28, Minnesota: 17

The Atlanta Falcons—Arizona Cardinals will be a very interesting one. After a good start but an awful end, can the Cardinals win? Kurt Warner's playoff hopes were gone a mile ago, now lets see where Matt Ryan's hopes go.

The fact is, the Falcons won the big game and really are impressive this year. The Cardinals died away, we all saw it. 9-7 isn't impressive in that bad division. The Falcons win big.

Atlanta: 35, Cardinals: 27

Ravens, Chargers, Falcons, Eagles, thanks for the read!