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Sunday, January 11, 2009

NFL PLAYOFFS SUNDAY

Both road teams won yesterday. One big upset (Cardnals) , and one not so big upset (Ravens)  and we lost both picks yesterday  (and the over bet) and are down to 974  Flaccos. 

Not to worry we have two games today, two next week, and one after that to finish the season with enough to buy that new boat this spring. 

The Eagles go to NY to play the Giants. The Eagles whupped the Giants in NY in their last meeting this year. And our analysis leads us to believe that these Giants are not the same team without WR Plex Burress.    (10-1 with Plex, 2-3 without Plex) The Giants are favoured by 4.5 points and that's a lot. The Eagles think they're a team of destiny, and we picked them last week.

 But today we go with the NY Boyz, Giants -4.5 + 100.  We love the Philly D, but we just can't put our faith in a team that passes to set up the run. We'd love to see the Eagles win and set up an NFC Championship game in Arizona, but we don't think it will happen. 

 A little tech talk: Without having to worry about Plex, the Eagle Defense, which wakes up in a blitz, can roll the safeties up for run support. The Eagles want to shut down the Giant running game. The Eagles want to make Giant QB Manning throw the ball. The problem is that we think Manning is good enough to carry his team, at least through this game. But still...


The Chargers play the Men of Steel next to the Monogahela River today in Pittsburgh.   These Steelers are an enigma.  They play tough D, they want to run the ball, and yet they can be beaten at home. The Chargers are 2-0 in post season games in Pittsburgh, which means nothing. 

The Chargers are hurting, and we neglected that fact yesterday when we picked the Titans (their starting center Kevin Mawae was out, and that was a big factor.) The Chargers have their all world back LT on the bench, and their equally all world linebacker S. Merriman.  This is too much firepower to lose to win a playoff game in Pittsburgh in January. 

The Steelers are relatively healthy after working through a year of injuries. The weather in PGH will be cold and snowy for the afternoon game, and that probably makes a difference. In warm and sunny San Diego the Chargers excellent special teams, and especially their fantastic punter would be a distinct advantage. In cold, snowy and windy Pittsburgh both punters will have a tough day, and the weather is enough of a factor to let us predict the Steelers and the Ravens will playing a matchup next week. 

But can the Steelers cover the 4.5?  It's a 50-50 proposition. The safe bet is the Chargers +4.5, as we see the Steelers winning 17-14.  But for the heck of it, we're going to assume tough Steeler WR Ward becomes a factor in the game and the Steelers cover. 

Pittsburgh -4.5  +100; Under 39 +150.   A little tech talk: In the first matchup, the Steelers used a defensive formation where they had one D-Lineman and 4 linebackers rushing the QB. And the interesting thing is the pressure was all up the middle. There was no outside containment, as the book on Charger QB Rivers is that he cannot run outside the pocket. If we were the Charger O-Coordinator (and by the way, any NFL team looking for an offensive or defensive coordinator and wanting to go in a different direction with a high powered gambling trial lawyer, shoot us an email and we are there)  we would throw in some designed rollouts where the entire pocket rolls to the left or right. That might shake the vaunted Steeler Defense up a bit.  

But still...look for the Steeler to come out with two TEs, a full back, and run Willie Parker until, in the words of coach Tomlin, "the wheels come off. "   

We have a few rough weeks coming up. We really don't want Sunday to end. 

6 comments:

fake dolpfan denny said...

The parking lot is empty. The halls of the stadium echo with my lonely footsteps. No more cheers. No more beers. No more expectations of the unexpected.

As I pad through this empty Dolphin stadium, warmed only by my memories of this surprising year, I walk out to the fifty yard line. For one brief moment, the sun is shining, the crowd is roaring, Ronnie Brown is taking the handoff from the Wildcat and just for a second I hear 75 thousand gleeful voices yelling

AND THAT'S ANOTHER MIAMI DOLPHINS FIRST DOWN.

And then, back to the sad reality of no more games, I take a deep and shuddering breath, my chest heavy with sadness. I pad down the empty corridors and out to the empty parking lot. And I drive away.

From: Tale Of the Dolphin Fan's Lament. (c) 2009.

REAL FAKE JAY WHITE said...

The saddest sound you'll never hear
is the football fan's empty cheer

with the stadium dark and cold and chill
there's nothing on my lonely grill

an empty seat
an empty space
a sad look upon my face

until the summer
and then the fall
the seasons pass without this call:
AND THATS ANOTHER MIAMI DOLPHINS FIRST DOWN

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Rumpole's Bookie said...

What should I do with all of the money I won from you this weekend? Buy a new Caddy? Put a second pool in my house? Trip back to the Italian homeland? Decisions, decisions........

Anonymous said...

It is PLAXico not Plexico Burress. Why cant people get it straight?

It is PLEXiglass not Plaxiglass.

Anonymous said...

Blah, blah, more sports trivia. Get thee to the sports channels!