Sunday, January 22, 2012

Prediction: XLII rematch (sans David Tyree)

The home team is 7-1 in the NFL playoffs. Even the Broncos, who deserved a playoff berth as much as I deserve to be the next president (not that I wouldn't do at least as well as today's incumbent and candidates) won their home playoff game.

The one road victor? The New York Giants, who did pretty much whatever they wanted in Green Bay last week.

The Giants are this year's version of the 2010 Packers and 2005 Steelers. Oh, and the 2007 Giants. Those teams quite arguably weren't the best in the NFL in those seasons, but they got hot at the right time and rolled to win championships.

These Giants have the same QB as the 2007 Giants, but Eli Manning is so much better now. In addition, they have been running the ball well and putting immense pressure on the opposing quarterback.

49ers QB Alex Smith showed a lot in last week's win against the Saints, but can he excel two weeks in a row against a defense that will relentlessly pursue him?

I'm answering "No" to that question and going with the hot QB, the on-fire team and the only club to have won a road game this postseason.

Giants 24, Niners 19.

In the AFC, I have a weakness: I can't pick against Tom Brady.

That worked fine 10 years ago but it certainly hasn't been an automatic recipe for success in recent seasons.

Oh well, fool me six times, shame on me.

Patriots 34, Ravens 17.

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