1/09/2004 07:44:00 PM
NFL DIVISONAL PLAYOFFS
Home team in CAPS
Panthers +7 over RAMS
You could not find two teams with more diverse philosophies. The Panthers are led by Head Coach John Fox and his stellar Defense and run,run,run offense. The Rams are run by Mike Martz and his mad scientist approach to offense. The Panthers and Rams have played 14 times, with each team winning 7 games. The Panthers in fact have a winning record (4-3) at Eddie Jones Dome. The key here for the Panthers, will be ball control on offense. Let Stephen Davis and the O Line set the tempo for this game. Although the Panthers have built up lot�s of confidence in QB Jake Delhomme, especially after the win over Dallas. Watch for the special teams play, as Carolina�s Special�s are superior to the Rams.
PATRIOTS -6 over Titans
What swings me to the P-Men side, is the injuries to Titans QB Steve McNair and RB Eddie George. I know both guys are �old school throwbacks� but I feel McNairs sprained left ankle, strained right calf, and cracked bone spur in the left ankle plus the separated shoulder suffered by George will be tough to overcome. Pats QB Tom Brady has played extremely well down the stretch and is at his best in the frigid condition of Foxboro. Hopefully, Charlie Weiss and Romeo Crennel will not let their being snubbed for head coaching positions hurt their preparations for this game.
Colts +3 over CHIEFS
The under/over in this game is 51. I think this one should go way over that. The margin of difference from the team to team in the NFL is so small that picking games is an absolute crapshoot. You can look at stats and trends and all but sometimes it just a gut feeling you get about a team. The Colts have so much confidence right now after tearing apart the Broncos you have to hope they do not get overconfident. All year long we�ve heard about the Chiefs defense�s inability to stop the run. The bigger problem for the Chiefs will be Peyton Manning. He�s is so confident and coming off a game for the ages, I just feel it�s the Colts time.
EAGLES -5 1/2 over Packers
I know everyone feels the Pack are the team of destiny but I think that bubble will burst in the City of Brotherly Love on Sunday. In this one, I feel the match up of the head coaches is in the Eagles favor by a landslide. Andy Reid is an outstanding head coach and with an extra week to get his game plan and his team fine-tuned, all signs point to the Iggles winning. From the collapse of the Vikes to the Hasselbeck INT, the Pack is playing with house money. But I just think the Iggles will not beat themselves as the Seahawks did last week.