Friday, January 08, 2010

Who I like, playoff version

Regular followers of this blog know that I went 11-0 versus the spread last year in the playoffs. I can't promise that kind of performance again this year – I'd be in Vegas instead of Washington if I could - but I did finish a solid 130-111-3 against the spread picking games in the paper this year.

Here's who I like this weekend
N.Y. Jets (plus 3 1/2) at Cincinnati - The Bengals went very vanilla last week while the Jets threw out everything and the kitches sink. I'm not a big fan of rookie quarterbacks in the playoffs, especially on the road. Take the Bengals, 20-13

Philadelphia (plus 4) at Dallas - People always like to bring up that old "it's hard to beat a team three times in one season" mantra. But is it? In 19 times a team has swept the regular season series with a division opponent, it has also won the third game 12 times. That's 12-7, so it's not that tough to beat a team three times. Sometimes, you're just better. Take Dallas, 27-17

Baltimore (plus 3 1/2) at New England - The Patriots struggled to beat the Ravens at home earlier this season, winning 27-21 with the help of some generous calls from the officials. Wes Welker didn't play that game, either. I like the road team here, take Baltimore, 23-20.

Green Bay (plus 1) at Arizona - If Anquan Boldin doesn't play, the Cards aren't nearly as explosive. And Arizona was also mediocre at home this season. Green Bay is my pick to win the NFC and it starts this week. Take the Packers, 31-24.

10 comments:

Robbie said...

Speaking of predictions, on the December 8th post entitled "Polamalu not done for season" I wrote the following:

"I'm calling my shot: the Steelers will lose to the Browns on Thursday. Polamalu will return for the final three games, all of which they will win. Final record 9-7, missing the playoffs by one game. Write it down!"

Boom! I was obviously wrong about Troy returning, but I was just going by what you reported. Looks like you got scooped by the national media again on that one?

Actually, nearly everything in that post turned out to be incorrect (Hines not playing, Burnett starting, Lewis getting playing time). Your crystal ball must have been busted that day!

Anonymous said...

Robbie Please!

Collin Williams said...

Robbie I checked that post and saw that you didn't write that, infact you wrote nothing at all. Maybe your imagination cracked

Dale Lolley said...

Thanks for visiting Robbie.

adamg said...

I wonder how Cincy feels now about laying down last week vs the Jets?

Dale Lolley said...

Well, they had already lost to Houston at home, so they knew how that played out.

adamg said...

Dale, watching the Cincy-NYJ game and especially the offense and QB play, I was struck by just how far the Steeler offense has regressed since the 2005 playoff run. During that playoff run, BR looked a lot like Sanchez, being a very efficient passer and using his mobility to much better effect. I think it shows how important the run game is to developing the mindset an offensive line needs to be dominant, too.

Dale Lolley said...

The Steelers in 2005 attacked early with the passing game to get a lead - using a lot of play action - and then ran once they got the lead.
The Jets did much of the same, though they didn't really ask Sanchez to do a whole lot in that game. The big passing plays were more a result of the Bengals not getting guys on the ground.
When you've got a defense that can shut teams down, you can do it that way.

adamg said...

Yes, that's what I'm saying. In 2005, Pgh had much better balance and it allowed them to surprise some teams in the playoffs by coming out throwing. But, the fact that the Steelers were a run first team set all that up. That's what they need to get back to.

Anonymous said...

Will Arizona lose again this week Dale? Just kidding....