Week 17 Preview

We are coming up on the last weekend of regular season football this week, and there are a few great matchups to look forward to headed by the Giants vs Cowboys. So here we go:

Cowboys at Giants (-3)   WIN

I am going to take the Giants in this one. Romo is banged up and word on the street is Osi Uminyora might be back in action. I think Romo is going to crumble under the pressure from the Giants D-line and the G-Men will move on to the playoffs winning this one 24-10. Pick- New York Р3

Washington at Philadelphia (-8.5)   WIN

Philly has been hot as of late, but neither team has anything to play for. Some could say the Eagles are playing for their head coach Andy Reid who is on the hot seat and may not have a job after this season. I am going to look for the Eagles to play a strong inspired game for their coach, as they did last week against the Cowboys after finding out their season had ended. Pick- Philadelphia -8.5

Tampa Bay at Atlanta (-11.5)   LOSS

Tampa has played horrible lately, but with Atlanta’s fate pretty much determined you might see some guys coming off the field after the first half or early in the 3rd. I like the Bucs to cover this week and hey, maybe even win straight up. Pick- Tampa Bay + 11.5¬†¬†¬†

San Francisco (-10.5) at St. Louis   LOSS

San Francisco is playing for a first round bye, so this game is huge for them. Look for them to come out of the gates hot and to a big early lead, against a St. Louis team that has packed it in and look to go on a strong 7 game losing streak to end the season. Some teams like to play spoiler but I don’t see it. Take the Niners to win big. Pick-¬†San Francisco- 10.5

Chicago at Minnesota (-1.5)    LOSS

Wow, Minnesota¬†is a favorite for probably the first time all year. How big of a turn has Chicago’s season taken after the loss of Cutler and Forte? This game could go either way, Peterson is out for the season but Toby Gerhart has stepped in well before so I am going to give the edge to the Vikings. Da Bears just have no offense and their defense hasn’t looked too good lately either. Go with the Vikes. Pick-¬†Minnesota -1.5

Detroit (-3.5) at Green Bay   LOSS

Detroit is giving 3.5 to Green Bay this weekend because it doesn’t look like a lot of the starters will be playing much for Green Bay as they have home field locked up and no perfect season to play for. Detroit can still be caught by the Falcons for a higher seed but other than that they don’t have much to play for. For teams that will be playing the next week, however, it is important for them to play good so they can feed off that win in the next game. I like the Cowardly Lions to cover this week.¬†Pick- Detroit -3.5

Carolina at New Orleans (-8)  LOSS

New Orleans has been on a roll lately, and can pick up a bye this week with a win so they will be coming out for blood. However, I have liked the way the Panthers have played this year. They have played teams close for the most part, and I like Cam Newton to end the year on a strong note. I like the Saints to pull out the win but I am taking the Panthers to cover. Pick- Carolina +8

Tennessee (-3) at Houston   WIN

Houston is locked into their playoff spot at 10-4, and will most likely be resting some guys. However, Houston always plays well at home and I was never sold on Tennessee at any point in the season so I am going with Houston to cover the spread and win. Pick- Houston +3

Baltimore (-2) at Cincinnati   WIN

Cincinnati has been the surprise team of the year behind rookies Andy Dalton and A.J. Green. They have a great shot at making the playoffs, but beating the Ravens will not be an easy task as they are fighting for the last bye in the AFC. The Ravens are very used to playing must win games on the road, as Joe Flacco has yet to play a playoff game at home in his first years as a starting quarterback. Cincinnati is a good team but I like the seasoned Ravens in this one. Pick- Baltimore -2.

Pittsburgh (-7) at Cleveland   LOSS

This is a pretty easy game in my opinion. Pittsburgh might be without Big Ben but they are playing for a bye and Cleveland is terrible so take the Steelers to win by a touchdown. Pick- Pittsburgh -7

Indianapolis at Jacksonville (-3.5)    LOSS

This is the NFL’s version of the Sacko¬†bowl. I honestly don’t even know who to pick here but I am going to jump on the Dan Orlovsky¬†bandwagon and say the Colts will win this game. Just a gut feeling, or maybe that’s the burrito I just ate…Pick- Indianapolis +3.5

New York Jets at Miami (-2.5)   WIN

This is a very tricky matchup. The Jets can play very well when backed against a wall or play god awful. I am thinking they go out and win this game just so they can say they didn’t make the playoffs because other teams didn’t do what they needed to. Always putting the blame on someone else. Pick- Jets +2.5

Buffalo at New England (-10.5)    WIN

Buffalo won their season Super Bowl this year against the Patriots, and I think they Patriots will be out for revenge. I can see the Pats going out to an earl 21-0 lead before Buffalo can blink. Pick- New England -10.5

San Diego at Oakland (-3)   WIN

San Diego is mathematically out of it and Oakland needs to win to get in plus some help. However, San Diego will probably be looking to end the season on a positive note and I don’t trust Carson Palmer and the Oakland D. I am going to go with another upset here. Pick- San Diego +3

Kansas City at Denver (-3)  LOSS

Here is Kyle Orton’s Super Bowl against his former team. He is playing with a personal vendetta¬†but I don’t see the Chiefs being able to overcome the Denver D. Denver wins and gets in. Pick- Denver -3

Seattle at Arizona (-3)   PUSH

This one is very surprising. Seattle has shown to be a good, solid team. Arizona has played well lately but I am looking for Marshawn Lynch to continue his strong year and for Seattle to win. Pick- Seattle +3

Record: 7-8-1

NFC Playoff Picture

Unlike the AFC, the NFC Playoff picture is pretty set right now. All the teams are in but one, and Green Bay has already locked up home field advantage throughout. Now, because the Jets are absolutely horrible and are dream killers, the Eagles have no shot of getting in, and it looks like their improbable playoff chance would have worked out had the Jets just been able to win. The Giants look to be the better team heading into their game against the Cowboys for the NFC East title this weekend, as Romo most likely will be playing injured. The last thing you want against a pass rush like the Giants is a quarterback who has to think about his injured hand all game.

While the playoffs teams are pretty much in, I think the NFC playoffs will be much more competitive and exciting than the AFC this year. In my opinion, every team in there will have a shot (unless the Cowboys pull off the upset this weekend). San Francisco has a ridiculous¬†defense, only giving up 1 rushing touchdown all year and that was last week to Marshawn Lynch who had about 18 rushes inside the 5 yard line. Pretty impressive. The Lions, we all know, haven’t played a playoff game since probably before I was born, so while they have no experience, their offense can win them at least one game. Stafford is playing out of his mind lately, and he has the best wide receiver in the NFL to throw to.

An offense which may be even hotter than Detroit’s is the Saints. Brees¬†breaks Marino’s passing yards in a season record in just 15 games, and it seems like they are putting up 40 points every week. They beat a good Atlanta team on Monday night, and at this point I might give the edge to these guys in the playoffs. They have so many weapons with Colston, Jimmy Graham, Lance Moore, Meechem, Darren Sproles, Pierre Thomas I mean the list goes on and on. The only way to beat the Saints is to create pressure, something a Giants team could certainly do if they are matched up together. The only way I see the Saints losing is a stunner to the Giants (if they happen to play each other) which is very possible if the Saints miss out on the 2nd bye. The Falcons are a tricky team. They have all the tools but they just don’t seem to have the intensity every game. Something seems to be missing this year. Matt Ryan has the ability to play great and also has the ability to take his team out of the game. I like the Falcons to win one game in the playoffs but don’t see a deep run this year.

Lastly, the Packers are the head of the NFC. That being said, I saw a game against the Kansas City Cheifs that made me rethink these guys are unbeatable. Aaron Rodgers looked horrible and that defense could barely stop Kyle Orton and Jackie Battle, yeah exactly. They will be a tough team to play, especially seeing as the road to the Super Bowl goes through Lambeau, but I see an upset in the making. Last year they were a hot team who were playing playoff games the last 4 weeks of their season, and kept that intensity going right into the playoffs. This year, they are the 1 seed and will be resting players this last week and getting a week off. That can be a dangerous combination for a team who has only lost 1 game and won the Super Bowl last year. Look for a very close game and possibly an upset in their first playoff game. If the Packers can make it past the 2 week lull with a win, they might be going to the Super Bowl. So what do you think? Who is going to win the NFC? Vote below and if you are lucky enough to have an Android, you can download my new app by clicking on the link on the side of the page or searching Tbows World in the Android Market.