The postseason is here at last, and while there are some surprises, most of the usual suspects are in the running for Super Bowl L.
A 10-6 record in the final week of the regular season did little to improve on a miserable season of prognostications, lifting the overall mark to just 149-107 (.582). Hopefully a successful run through the playoff picks will salvage some modicum of respect.
On with it …
AFC WILDCARD GAMES
Saturday, Jan. 9
Kansas City at Houston, 3:35 p.m.
Houston has the kind of defense that can chill red-hot Kansas City, but can the Texans offense find a way to score enough points? Doubtful … CHIEFS 23-13.
Pittsburgh at Cincinnati, 7:15 p.m.
Everybody is frightened of the Pittsburgh passing game and mention the Steelers winning, 33-20, in Cincy. But the Bengals were 16-10 victors in Pittsboigh, so, what will give? I trust A.J. McCarron far more than Andy Dalton, but … STEELERS 27-20.
NFL WILDCARD GAMES
Sunday, Jan. 10
Seattle at Minnesota, 12:05 p.m.
Not since the good ol’ days at Metropolitan Stadium have the Vikings been able to make a visitor endure the bitter Minnesota cold. Problem is, the Norse are no longer used to it, and Seattle is simply the better team … SEAHAWKS 28-16.
Green Bay at Washington, 3:40 p.m.
True, Kirk Cousins in not Aaron Rodgers, and, true, the Redskins cannot run the ball. It is also true the Packers cannot protect their quarterback, which means this is an even match. Although a gut feeling tells me I am wrong, I will go with … PACKERS 24-21.
Last week (end regular season): 10-6. Season: 149-107 (.582).
(Go road teams! I need the wins!)