Saturday, January 14, 2006

Divisional round

Carolina's win over the Giants last week put the kibosh on a number of hypothetical playoff matchups: Eli Manning vs. Peyton Manning in the Super Bowl. Matt Hasselbeck vs. Tim Hasselbeck in the NFC Championship Game. And, coupled with Washington's win over Tampa Bay, Tiki Barber vs. Ronde Barber in the NFC Championship Game. Oh well.

Only seven games left to go. Depressing. I made a large error last week in explaining at length why teams would win before the games were played. Turns out I'm a lot smarter in retrospect. So let's just do the picks quickly and save the talky-talky for the recap. But this time, let's try picking against the spread.

Washington at Seattle (-9.5): Straight up, I'd take the Seahawks, but with the Redskins defense playing as well as it has, I expect Washington to cover. Pick: Redskins.

New England at Denver (-3): I suppose it's ridiculous to pick against the Pats anytime in the playoffs, but if any team has been shrugged off all year, it's Denver. Pick: Broncos.

Pittsburgh at Indianapolis (-9.5): Looks to me like a line set by the action, not by what's likely to happen on the field. Nevertheless, I'll go out on a limb. Pick: Colts.

Carolina at Chicago (-2.5): It won't be very cold. Pick: Panthers. Make this my Already-Regretting-It Lock of the Week.

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