The 2010 NFL playoffs kick off this weekend and feature four competitive games in the Wildcard round that will have the NFL fans on the edge of their seats.
Will the Seattle Seahawks be able to ride their momentum and earn a win over the defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints? Which Philadelphia Eagles team will show up when they play host to the dangerous Green Bay Packers?
Can the Kansas City Chiefs continue their magical season and knock the Baltimore Ravens out of the opening round? Are the New York Jets going to find the magic again this year to help them move past the Indianapolis Colts?
These questions will be answered by the end of the wildcard round for the 2010 NFL playoffs.
New Orleans Saints at Seattle Seahawks
The Saints entered the 2010 NFL playoffs on a roll and look to be like the defending Super Bowl champions everyone thought they would be. Their offense averaging 24 points per game during the regular season and should receive a big boost with the return of running back Reggie Bush.
The Seahawks won a big game last week and will be riding the momentum of it when they welcome the Saints to their hostile home stadium. Even though the Saints
The big x factor for the Saints is going to be the performance of the defenses. Over the last four games the Saints defense has held opponents to an average of 20 points per game.
The defense that is going to maintain their intensity and capitalize on the turnovers will come away with an easy win. In the end, the Saints will earn the win and advance to the next round.
Prediction – New Orleans 31 Seattle 17
New York Jets at Indianapolis Colts
Though the Jets limped into the playoffs, do not expect them to be an easy out during the wildcard round. Their defense is still rated near the top in the NFL and features a unit that gives up only 19.0 points per game and 90.9 yards per game on the ground.
The Colts stormed their way into the playoffs thanks to an offense that scored 30 points or more in four of their last five games. The concern Colts’ fans have is their defense has given up 22.6 points per game during that same stretch.
The difference maker in this game is going to be the performances of Peyton Manning and Mark Sanchez. Both quarterbacks have had their ups and down this season and showed us why their team’s success lies on them. Manning has turned things around and despite the injured receiving corps, will outperform the younger Sanchez.
When the game is done, the Colts will be advancing to the next round after a hard fought win.
Prediction – Indianapolis 28 New York 20
Baltimore Ravens at Kansas City Chiefs
The Ravens enter the 2010 NFL playoffs on a four game winning streak and will be taking a revived offense to Kansas City. Joe Flacco looks more comfortable at the helm and will be ready to take on a Chiefs’ defense that allowed 219.9 yards per game through the air.
The Chiefs offense is going to have their hands full when they face a Ravens’ defense that gives up only 16.9 points per game. Their quarterback Matt Cassell will need to keep tabs on where the Ravens playmaker, safety Ed Reed, is at all times if they want to win.
The key to this game will be the rushing attack of both teams. The Ravens will need to effectively use Ray Rice not just between the tackles, but out of the backfield on those short passes. The Chiefs are going to counter with their 1-2 punch of Jamal Charles and Thomas Jones.
The Ravens and Chiefs will fight down to the last minute and end up being the closet game of the weekend.
Prediction – Baltimore 24 Kansas 21
Green Bay Packers at Philadelphia Eagles
After the Eagles earned that electric win over the Giants three weeks ago, everyone thought they punched their ticker to Super Bowl XLV. Instead they lost two in a row and missed out on a shot at an opening week bye. Keep an eye on the Eagles’ running game, considering they will be going up against a Packers defense that allows 114.9 yards per game on the ground.
The Packers enter this contest winning their last two games in dominating fashion. The offensive unit has still lacked the true threat of a running attack and will need either Brandon Jackson or another one of their backs to shoulder the load and provide some balance to the offense.
The determining factor in this game will be the play of the quarterbacks, Aaron Rodgers and Michael Vick. Vick has seeming looked human the last two weeks will need to shoulder the load against a dominant Packers defense. Rodgers has been suffering through concussions this season and will need to stay upright if they are going to earn a win.
The Packers will be the second road playoff team to earn a win this weekend and advance to the next round of the playoffs.
Prediction – Green Bay 24 Philadelphia 17