Its time for the second season ladies and gents. Here are my winners for the first round of the playoffs.
Jets at Bengals: Bengals. I know the Jets have a great defense and a great running game but at some point in this matchup they are going to have to ask rookie quarterback Mark Sanchez to make a play for them. That won't turn out well for the Jets.
Eagles at Cowboys: Cowboys. Its damn near impossible to beat a team 3 times in a season but I think the Cowboys will get it done this year. They are the healthier team and the hotter team and they run the ball which is how you win in the playoffs. I will admit to some nervousness about this pick though. Something tells me the homer in me might be behind this one.
Ravens at Patriots: Patriots. I like the Ravens a lot and the truth is they had a very good chance of beating the Patriots in their earlier meeting this season. I realize that having Wes Welker out will hurt the Patriots offense also. But there is one factor I am looking at that I think will be the difference in this game and that is the return of Fred Taylor. I don't necessarily think Taylor will have a monster game. I just think he will make enough plays in the running game to keep the Ravens defense honest enough that Brady is able to go up top to Moss a few times. Even the threat of a running game is something the Patriots haven't had most of the year and I personally think it will be enough to offset the loss of Welker.
Packers at Cardinals: Cardinals. As much attention as the Cards get for their offense, and rightly so, I think they will win this game with their defense. I think they will be great against the run and force Green Bay into a lot of 3rd and longs. I also think that even though the Cards are banged up that Kurt Warner will find a way to make plays in the passing game to push the ball down the field. It will be close but I think the Cards win it right at the end.