ROUND 2 Picks: Under the Radar

Posted: January 14, 2012 by Keith Stone in NFL
Tags: , ,

After Tebowmania ran wild on ROUND 1, it seems like the only thing people want to talk about is whether he can lead the Broncos over the Patriots and to the Super Bowl, now that he’s tantalizingly close and there are no juggernauts in the AFC. It’s an interesting thought and I’m looking forward to watching the Pats-Broncos game but the amount of attention it’s gotten this week is insane, especially considering the fact that the two NFC matchups are actually more fascinating. You have two gunslinging Super Bowl MVP’s battling it out at Lambeau, and the hottest offense in the league going against the hottest defense. I can hardly wait. Last week’s matchups were boring random. It’s time to put your big boy pants on, kids, and let’s make some picks.

SAINTS (-3.5) AT 49ERS
Stone’s Pick: Honestly, I think the Saints are the best team in the NFL. I’d take them over the Packers on a neutral field. Unfortunately, they lost at Lambeau to start the season so now they have to travel to San Francisco. Like Houston last week, I think the crowd is going to play a tremendous factor considering this is the first home playoff game for the Niners in nine years. The fans are going to be ready. The weather looks like it’s holding up but playing on grass is still a huge disadvantage for the Saints. I’ll take the 49ers as long as Alex Smith doesn’t get any playoff jitters, which is certainly possible. Prediction: 49ers 23, Saints 19

Rory’s Pick: This totally has a “Nobody believes in us!” feel for the 49ers, but the Saints are just too good.  I expect it to be close and low scoring early, but the Saints pull out the victory.  Prediction: Saints 28, 49ers 17

BRONCOS AT PATRIOTS (-13.5)
Stone’s Pick: The Patriots confuse me. In their last two games in the regular season, they got off to horrible starts against mediocre teams, then came back to take control. They did the same thing when they played Denver in the regular season. The key is going to be playing a consistent game. If the Broncos get an early lead, they can play one of their solid, take-no-chances game like they did last week. If Tim Tebow is forced to lead them back from more than two touchdowns, it could get messy. Then again… Prediction: Patriots 27, Broncos 17

Rory’s Pick: If you’ve followed my picks, you know I hitched my wagon to the Tebows early.  However, I think God only helps out Tebow on Sundays, not Saturdays.  The gravy train ends here.  Prediction: Patriots 31, Broncos 6 (Tebow 316!)

TEXANS AT RAVENS (-7.5)
Stone’s Pick: I think the Texans got their one win and will be content to ride out into the sunset. I can’t imagine T.J. Yates going to Baltimore against the Ravens’ defense and pulling out a win. Baltimore may be inconsistent, but they have played well at home and in big games. It’s a shame the Texans got hit by so many injuries or they would have a legit shot to make the Super Bowl. Prediction: Ravens 27, Texans 10

Rory’s Pick: The game nobody cares about!  And neither do I.  I’m doing solid on my picks, but my actually picking the score is nuts.  Will I come close this week?  Imagine if I hit one on the head?  Prediction: Ravens 24, Houston 13

GIANTS AT PACKERS (-7.5)
Stone’s Pick: When these teams played in the regular season, it was about as even as it gets. The Pack may have marched down the field to win at the end, but people forget that Greg Jennings scored a touchdown that should have been called off on the review. The Giants were also missing several key players, including Osi Umanyiora. The Packers were banged up too but Osi will play a major role in limiting the amount of time Aaron Rodgers has to throw. Yes, Green Bay is explosive but with the lack of a running game, there’s a decent chance they will fall victim to the reconstituted Hydra. Eli and the Giants have been nearly as good but if they get anything out of Bradshaw and Jacobs, they’ll have the edge. Remember, this team won the Super Bowl four years ago. They won’t be intimidated. Prediction: Giants 27, Packers 17

Rory’s Pick: But I’m not picking my G-Men to win.  The Giants have exceeded my expectations this season, and I can’t be greedy as a fan.  A well fought game against the Pack would be all I need to leave this season satisfied.  Prediction: Packers 33, Giants 32

PLAYOFF RECORDS
Stone: 3-1
Rory: 3-1

Last Week’s Picks

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