Ready to make your NFL Wild Card Weekend Picks?
You should be, as the NFL’s postseason will kick off with four games this weekend.
New Orleans Saints (11-5 SU, 7-9 ATS) at Seattle Seahawks (7-9 SU, 7-9 ATS)
Saturday, January 8: 4:30 p.m. NBC, Live from Qwest Field, Seattle, WA
New Orleans: -10 ½
Seattle: +10 ½
Total: 44 ½
Starting in Seattle, the woeful NFC West champion Seattle Seahawks will host the New Orleans Saints.
That’s right, Seattle finished just 7-9 on the season, but thanks to a win last Sunday night against St. Louis, they earned the division title and a trip to the playoffs. And before you assume that the Saints are the NFL Wild Card Weekend Picks to make, understand that they’re headed to Qwest Field, one of the toughest road venues in the NFL. Seattle won five of their seven games at home, covering the spread in all five.
And it’s the mystique of Qwest Field alone, which is enough to make Seattle the pick here.
We’re not saying the Saints can’t or won’t win. Just that 10 ½ points seems like a lot for any team to be giving, especially one traveling across country for their first game of the playoffs. It doesn’t help that they’ll be playing in the toughest road environment in football.
NFL Wild Card Weekend Pick: Seattle +10 ½
New York Jets (11-5 SU, 9-7 ATS) at Indianapolis Colts (10-6 SU, 8-7-1 ATS)
Saturday, January 8: 8:30 p.m. NBC, Live from Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, IN
New York: +2 ½
Indianapolis: -2 ½
Total: 44 ½
Saturday’s second game will actually be a rematch of last year’s AFC Championship Game, when the New York Jets travel to Lucas Oil Stadium to take on the Colts.
Can New York exact revenge for last year’s loss? We don’t think so.
The simple truth is that this is the one team the Jets don’t match up well against. Peyton Manning should have no problem moving the ball on an overrated Jets defense that gave up 38 or more points in two of their last five games. On the other side of the ball, Colts defensive linemen could make it a long day for Jets second year quarterback Mark Sanchez. As improved as he was in 2010, Sanchez had an uninspiring 17 to 13 touchdown to interception ratio.
Of all the NFL Wild Card Weekend Picks, this may be the easiest one on the board. It’ll be Colts all the way.
NFL Wild Card Weekend Picks: Indianapolis -2 ½
Baltimore Ravens (12-4 SU, 8-7-1 ATS) at Kansas City Chiefs (10-6 SU, 9-7 ATS)
Sunday, January 9: 1:00 p.m. CBS, Live from Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, MO
Kansas City: +3
Total: 40 ½
Heading into Sunday’s action, the favored Ravens will look to do something that most were unable to do this season, beat the Chiefs in Kansas City.
It won’t be easy, as the Chiefs finished 7-1 in the cozy confines of Arrowhead Stadium in 2010, with their only loss coming to Oakland last weekend. Look for a big game from running back Jamaal Charles, who finished second in the NFL in rushing, behind only Houston’s Arian Foster.
Will Baltimore have enough offense to keep up? We’re not sure. The Ravens enter this one with Joe Flacco in a bit of a lull, as he’s thrown for under 200 yards in three straight games.
You can’t become one dimensional in the playoffs, and that’s exactly what we’re afraid of with the Ravens. Take the Chiefs in your NFL Wild Card Weekend Picks.
NFL Wild Card Weekend Picks: Kansas City +3
Green Bay Packers (10-6 SU, 9-7 ATS) at Philadelphia Eagles (10-6 SU, 7-9 ATS)
Sunday, January 9: 4:30 p.m. Fox, Live from Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia, PA
Green Bay: +3
The final of the NFL Wild Card Weekend Picks takes us to Philadelphia, where Michael Vick will look to further his claim as an MVP candidate, with a first round win over Green Bay.
It won’t be easy, as Vick has struggled in his last few outings. Two games ago against Minnesota, Vick completed just 58 percent of his passes, throwing an interception to match his one touchdown pass. Last week, with the NFC East wrapped up, the veteran quarterback sat out. Vick claims he’s at 100 percent entering this game, after nagging injuries slowed him down the stretch. Honestly we’re not sure.
What we are sure of though, is that Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers is at his best. Rodgers had to carry his team the last two weeks, and that’s exactly what he did, throwing for over 600 yards and five touchdowns, in wins over New York and Chicago.
When it comes to this weekend’s wagers, we just trust Rodgers more than Vick. Go ahead and take the Packers as your final NFL Wild Card Weekend pick.
NFL Wild Card Weekend Pick: Green Bay +3