NFL 2014-15 Playoffs – Wild Card Round predictions

So apologies these are late… just got back from vacation. Here goes:

Cardinals 9 | Panthers 13

If Drew Stanton or Carson Palmer were playing, the Cardinals win this one. But I just don’t trust Lindley. Panthers’ offense will struggle against the Cardinals’ vaunted defense, though. I just think their struggles won’t offset, you know…. Lindley. What a waste of a great defense and coach. Next year, Arizona…

Ravens 13 | Steelers 28

Joe Flacco has struggled on the road this year (esp. in the two teams’ last meeting at Heinz Field). Even without their star running back Bell, the Steelers have their high-flying passing attack that can easily overwhelm the Ravens’ secondary. This year in the regular season, the Ravens are 2-4 against playoff teams, while the Steelers are 5-1. Finally, in the playoffs, the Steelers are 4-0 against the Ravens. Upshot: overwhelming advantage for the Steelers.

Bengals 23 | Colts 30

The Colts have just not been a dominant team but I can’t trust Dalton. This is a tough pick — the Bengals should be favored (they have a better defense and run game, for starters) — but Dalton just crumbles under the spotlight. Not to mention, the Colts shut out the Bengals during their meeting during the regular season, so there is a precedence to look back upon. It will be a closer game this time around, however.

Lions 21 | Cowboys 19

Another extremely tough pick. Maybe Romo botches the hold on a game-winning FG again. Lol. Nah, I think he might choke in a different way this time, maybe in the form of a killer INT or two. That defensive line of the Lions is stout, and they say defense wins championships. So I think Romo might be pressured into making a few bad decisions if the run game doesn’t get going — Lions have had the best run defense in the NFL this year. On the other side, Matthew Stafford is competent (sometimes), though definitely not as good as Romo. Stafford just does some dumb things sometimes — and his accuracy is questionable. Stafford’s performance will decide this game. If Stafford commits the costly turnovers, Cowboys win easily. If not, I think the Lions’ D can contain the Cowboys. Needless to say, difficult pick that could go either way.

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HIGHLY DEPENDENT FUTURECAST

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Divisional Round

Lions | Seahawks

Panthers | Packers

Steelers | Broncos

Colts | Patriots

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Championship

Packers | Seahawks

Steelers | Patriots

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Super Bowl

Seahawks | Patriots

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