Well, that was a crappy start to the playoffs for me, as I lost the Colts (who I had going to the AFC title game) along with two other games. Moving on and trying to avoid the doughnut.
Baltimore (+3) at Tennessee
The only winner I did get right, the Ravens are looking a lot like they did in 2000 – dominating, big-play defense with a punishing running game and a unspectacular quarterback who avoids the big mistake. I’m tempted to pick them to beat the Titans, as Kerry Collins doesn’t quite breed confidence in me. However, I did pick Tennessee to make the Super Bowl, so I can’t go back now. I’ll hedge my bet and take the points.
Tennessee 16, Baltimore 14
Arizona (+10) at Carolina
The Cardinals looked good for the first time in a month, as their defense shut out Atlanta’s running game and made Matt Ryan look like a rookie, which is pretty rare. But putting that type of effort out two weeks in a row – especially against a well-rested, playoff-tested team like the Panthers – is easier said than done. I’m taking the Panthers big here.
Carolina 28, Arizona 13
Philadelphia (+4) at N.Y. Giants
The weather outside could be pretty frightful, as the New York metro area is supposed to be buried in 6-8 inches of snow between now and gametime Sunday. That bodes much better for the Giants, who have a healthy Brandon Jacobs ready to pound. That rest, plus the revenge factor toward an Eagles win at New York in early December, should be enough.
N.Y. Giants 21, Philadelphia 14
San Diego (+6) at Pittsburgh
Ready or not, the Chargers are coming. They proved me wrong against Indy last week and could give the Steelers a hassle this week. Pittsburgh’s D is top notch, but Ben Roethlisberger and the offense have struggled to string together touchdowns offensively. I’ll take the home team again, with the road team covering.
Pittsburgh 17, San Diego 13
Overall: 148-104-1. Record against spread: 118-132-3.