Wednesday, January 12, 2011
NFL Divisional Round Playoff Preview
All right, all right, enough with the "sappy, life-affirming" columns. I get it. All of the comments, all of the e-mails, it's just been overwhelming…silence. Oh, well, I'm just going to go ahead and assume that loyal friends of the Mog are at least semi-interested in what's going to happen this next round. I'm actually making my way to Vegas this weekend. I know—I have a problem. Oh, well. It figures that the weekend I head out there, they take away the "Free Money" sign for the first time in about a month. These lines are incredibly tough. Am I going to bet them? YOU'RE GODDAMN RIGHT I AM! On to the games:
Baltimore at Pittsburgh (-3)
Hoo boy. Somebody get the paramedics on hand for this one. Maybe a vet, too. These juiced-up monsters may be so 'roided out that we need a veterinarian. It'll be interesting to see if Flacco repeats his "Choke-o" performance from week 13. I could see this one going either way: the Ravens blow up a weakened Pittsburgh O-line, Flacco keeps his cool and is finally promoted to Assistant Night Manager, and the Ravens win by ten or so. It's just as likely that Roethlisberger comes out and forces…err…himself on the Ravens, and Polamalu picks Choke-o three times in a Pittsburgh rout. Time for the John Anthony coin flip…
NY Jets at New England (-8 ½)
I was discussing some of the games with G Gel Unit, and he wants me to put some cash on the Jets for him. I asked him if he wants me to just burn the cash or actually go through the charade of placing the bet. I think this is one of the easier ones on the board. Everyone thinks that the Jets defense is going to be so much better this time around, but I mean, come on, did anyone else see Sanchez this past week? He was horrendous. Aside from "calling the play when Jim Caldwell stupidly called a timeout with 28 seconds left," as Rex Ryan claims Sanchez did, they would've been much better with Brunell out there last week. It was like a flashback to the Chris Chandler era here in St. Louis. High-and-wide! High-and-wide! And you think this guy is going to go into Foxboro and make a game out of it against Tom Brady of all people? Yikes. Still, why do I get the sneaking suspicion that Nick Folk is going to backdoor cover this one with a meaningless field goal? Goddamn it.
Pick: New England
Green Bay vs. Atlanta (-2 ½)
This is a tough one. On the one hand, Matt Ryan never loses at home. On the other hand, his offensive coordinator has been interviewing for jobs this week. On the one hand, it is Aaron Rodgers, and he almost willed this team to win when they played in the regular season. On the other hand, Green Bay stock is at an all-season high right now. I think what it comes down to is that the 2 ½ is a slap in the face to Atlanta, as Vegas is basically saying that the Falcons are half-point dogs on a neutral field. Is Mike Smith smart enough to use that as motivation? Can you even mention point spreads to your team? What do I look like, Roger Goodell? I bet the old Scoutmaster and the Eagle Scout find a way to win this one by at least a field goal. Maybe they can find some Ginger Ale to celebrate with.
Seattle at Chicago (-10)
I would have thought this spread would've overvalued Seattle quite a bit, and put them at about +6 ½ or so. I mean, they DID beat Chicago at Soldier Field earlier this season. Pete Carroll has moved on from his pathetic "quarter behind the ear" routine and onto the "endless multi-colored handkerchief." And you know what? His team is buying into it! They think he's some kind of powerful wizard like C-3PO in Return of the Jedi. They're a bunch of Ewoks! And you know what? THE EWOKS TOOK DOWN AN ARROGANT SPACE EMPIRE! I mean, sure, they had some help from a band of surprisingly technologically-advanced rebels, but they shocked the galaxy!
So there you have it. Of course, it'll be just great when I make a small fortune off of these picks. Just fantastic. I mean, I always leave Vegas ahead! What am I down? DO YOU REALLY WANT TO KNOW!? Don't ask unless you want to go to a very, very dark place. Very dark.
Questions? Comments? Wondering why I subject myself to self-inflicted torture once every 4-6 months or so by heading out to Vegas? E-mail the Blogmogger team at firstname.lastname@example.org. I mean it. I still check the address and everything. If nothing else, you could get included in a mailbag. That's something, right?