We had one upset in last week’s games, but both of Sunday’s affairs looked to be quite entertaining. Both home teams are favored and winning here would make for a good Super Bowl, but we’ll be happy with anything we get. Narrative Street will be busy regardless of who wins on Sunday with premier quarterbacks leading the way for all parties. Seattle can talk about repeating. New England can talk about Brady and Belichick winning a championship 14 years after their first. Green Bay can talk about the best quarterback in the game getting a second chance at glory. Indianapolis can talk about young Andrew Luck improving to the point where he can win his first title.
We’ll be entertained with any of these, but we obviously can’t get them all. Who will we get? Let’s take a look at the crystal ball.
SEATTLE -7.5 over Green Bay
These two teams faced off back in Week 1 and Seattle took the sledgehammer to Green Bay after the first quarter. The biggest issue for Seattle’s offense at the time was their offensive line. Rookie center Corey Linsley was thrown into the fire in his first game against the best defense in football. Matters got worse when Derek Sherrod took over for an injured Bryan Bulaga and became a turnstile at right tackle. Everything was downhill for Seattle’s defense after that and Green Bay’s defense wasn’t good enough to limit Seattle.
Green Bay’s offensive line is steadier at this point, but their quarterback doesn’t have his legs. Aaron Rodgers’ calf injury is clearly limiting him and that doesn’t bode well against one of the league’s best pass rushes. I know Seattle hasn’t faced many good quarterbacks recently, but it’s not like they’re an unknown commodity. Cam Newton played decently, but wasn’t able to do enough and Carolina has a better defense than Green Bay does. It likely won’t be a blowout, but Seattle will win comfortably.
Kyle: Green Bay
NEW ENGLAND -6.5 over Indianapolis
Like in the NFC match-up, these AFC teams faced off earlier this year. The two teams played on Sunday night in Week 11 and it will always be remembered as the day Jonas Gray ran for 200 yards and four touchdowns. Indianapolis couldn’t run the ball themselves, although this was when Ahmad Bradshaw and Trent Richardson were involved. T.Y. Hilton was shut down and Indianapolis couldn’t keep up with New England’s point scoring.
That was game in Indianapolis and this one’s in New England. You could make the case that the Colts are playing much better now on both sides of the ball than they were then, but I’m not completely convinced. Their last two playoff wins are nice, but they both have large caveats. They beat Andy Dalton without his weapons and Peyton Manning with a torn quad. New England currently seems to be running on all cylinders. They do have one major injury, however, as center Bryan Stork is dealing with a knee injury that will likely keep him out of the game. The running game likely won’t be as effective for New England in this one, but their passing game can pick things up without issue. Indianapolis has holes as long as you stay away from Vontae Davis and Davis won’t be matched up against Rob Gronkowksi or Julian Edelman. New England should have enough to get through by a touchdown or more in this one.
Last Week: 2-2