Here are my predictions for the playoffs...
Bengals @ Texans - Two rookie QBs go head to head. Texans QB T.J. Yates has Andre Johnson and a running game with a strong defense while Bengals QB Andy Dalton has a good running game with a variety of WRs to throw and a strong defense. In the end, I think it comes down to experience for both QBs and Andy Dalton has more experience. This will probably be a boring game with many punts, but the Bengals will come out with a vicory. Bengals 16, Texans 13.
Lions @ Saints - Nobody and I mean nobody has much of a shot to win in New Orleans and I doubt a young Lions QB like Matt Stafford can go into the Superdome, loudest of any stadium, and play top notch football. The Lions started the season as the comeback kids, but a comeback in the Superdome would be impossible. The key for the Lions will be starting fast because a slow start will be fatal against a team looking for redemption after an embarrassing loss last year against the Seahawks. Saints start big and the Lions will make the game closer than it really is. Saints 31, Lions 23.
Falcons @ Giants - The tale of two similar seasons which can be described as blah. Giants QB Eli Manning had a career best season and has weapons to throw to, but one of the key elements that won them a super bowl a few years ago is one of the worst in the league, the running game. The Falcons are a dome team that will be exposed to the elements, but lets not forget Falcons QB Matt Ryan is a Boston College alumni. This will be the closest game of the weekend and the Falcons will win it in a stunner. Regular season records aren't a big deal in the playoffs. Eli Manning's record for 4th quarter TDs won't mean a thing in this game. Falcons 24, Giants 23.
Steelers @ Broncos - A bruised and battered Steelers team will be entering the new holy land in Mile High. The blue print has been laid for Broncos QB Tim Tebow. A strong bump coverage with a pass rush that contains will make for an easy victory despite the many ailments on the Steelers team. The biggest injury may be on the Broncos defense with S Brian Dawkins unable to play. The Steelers will prove why they are a 12 win team at a 8-8 team's stadium. Steelers 24, Broncos 6.
Bengals @ Patriots - Crazy coaching hot seat situation...Bill Bellichick after losing three straight home playoff games. Don't see it happening here. The Patriots have started very slowly the last few weeks but will put that to rest witha quick start against the rookie led Bengals. Dalton will get a stong dose of the NFL. Even bad defenses can confuse a youngster. Patriots 34, Bengals 17.
Saints @ 49ers - The Saints will have played 13 of 17 games in domes up until this point and it will be costly. My gut tells me 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh has already prepared for the Saints this past week. The 49ers stellar defense will be enough to suffocate a great indoor offense. The Saints will ahve nobody but themselves to blame after this loss because if they didn't lose to terrible teams like the 2-14 Rams and 4-12 Buccaneers they would have had the #2 seed. Saints live in regret. 49ers 19, Saints 17.
Steelers @ Ravens - Steelers coach will be questioned after allowing an injured QB Ben Roethlisberger play the last two weeks of the regular season when the bye week was not in their control. A hobbled Roethlisberger costs his team a three game sweep by the Ravens. Ravens 24, Steelers 17.
Falcons @ Packers - Can the Falcons pull off what the 2007 Giants and 2010 Packers pulled off? Three straight road games enroute to a Lombardi trophy? Simple answer, no. The Packers take advantage of the bye week and end the Falcons dreams with ease. Packers 30, Falcons 17.
Ravens @ Patriots - A rematch of a humiliating loss last year for the Patriots. The Delaware alumni Ravens QB Joe Flacco will seem all to comfortable playing football in the northeast despite some bad games. Ravens RB Ray Rice will have bigger price tag. Ravens win again in Foxborough and questions about how much time Patriots QB Tom Brady has left will be one of the many topics in the off season. Ravens, 27, Patriots 23.
49ers @ Packers - The 49ers will get a big welcome to the playoffs party from the Packers. The Packers defense will be a different defense like the Colts defense that was never going to stop the run. People will wander if this is the same defense that played during the season. Packers 34, Ravens 21.
Packers vs Ravens - Packers QB Aaron Rodgers will finish off a season Brett Favre could only dream of. Rodgers etches a new legacy in Packers history that is beyond comparison. The Packers next feat will be the first three peat. The Ravens will have finished a season off in great fashion with a super bowl appearance. However, how much longer will future hall of famers LB Ray Lewis and S Ed Reed be around? A great season will end with many questions for the future of the Ravens. Packers 31, Ravens 21.
Aaron Rodgers MVP, first TD of the game Ray Rice.