Green Bay Packers (-6, 52.5) vs. Dallas Cowboys – Sunday 1:05 PM
The Packers haven’t lost at home this year and QB Aaron Rodgers has thrown 25 TD’s with no INT’s at Lambeau field in 2014.
The Dallas Cowboys are 8-0 on the road in 2014 and are coming off a huge comeback win over the choking Detroit Lions during last week in “Big D”.
The temps in Green Bay on Sunday afternoon are going to “touch” maybe the mid teens, but with the wind chill it will feel like the Ice Bowl 2015.
So what gives in this sure to be another record-breaking TV ratings bonanza for already some of the riches people on the planet?
My guess is unless Rodgers’ calf is stepped on “by accident” again in this one, the Green and Gold will prevail and he’s why.
The Packers have been almost unstoppable at home this year averaging 36 points per game over their last 6 home games. Two of those games they dropped a 50 + spot on Chicago and Philly respectively.
And it’s not just A-Rodg spinning it, but the running game under Eddie Lacy has been fantastic as well. Last week the Lions were running at will as well as throwing it all over Jerry’s World in the first half only to shut it down in the loss in the second half.
The Cowboys have been road warriors this year, but winning on a frozen tundra in the playoffs vs. arguably the best QB going will be the toughest task to date. Especially with QB Tony Romo‘s history in big spots as well as he’s aching back issues.
I think this one will be close going into the middle of the 3rd quarter, but a couple big plays (no one had more 30+ yard plays than the Pack this year) to Jordy Nelson and Randell Cobb should put the Packers back in the NFC Championship game next Sunday.
Nuggets: Cowboys are 5-0 ATS in their last 5 games on grass. The “over” is 7-0 in the last 7 Cowboy games played on the road. The “over” is 4-0 in Packers last 4 Divisional playoff matchups. The Packers are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games vs. teams with winning records.
Denver Broncos (-7, 54) vs. Indianapolis Colts – Sunday 4:40 PM
Could this be Peyton Manning‘s last game? Whisper’s are that if he wins a Super Bowl this season the former Vol could hang up his spikes for good. I for one don’t believe that, but that is the vibe I’m hearing from people in the “know” around the league.
But if this is Peyton’s last ride, then how fitting would it be that his former team and replacement, Andrew Luck, would be the team to do it?
The Colts struggled down the stretch once they secured the AFC South division. They even shut down their prize QB in the second to last game of the year to the chagrin of many fantasy owners. But last week they got back to what they do best in getting the ball down field in a never in doubt 26-10 win over the Bengals.
This test at the artist formerly known as Mile High will be Luck’s biggest since he lost in this exact spot last year in Foxboro. Even without the weapons on the outside and at RB like Peyton has, Luck has had an outstanding year accounting for 78% of his team’s offensive production (most of any of the remaining QB’s in the playoffs). That is not exactly a recipe for a Super Bowl team, but with this guy anything is possible.
The Broncos have been cruising for over a month, even limiting Manning’s throws like he’s Stephen Strasburg in 2012.
Running the ball with C.J. Anderson has helped balance this once pass happy offense. And most people in the know think it’s because the Broncos anticipate having to go to Foxboro in frigid conditions at some point and wanted to be prepared. I’m not buying that.
My eyes are seeing a QB with diminishing arm strength and someone who just doesn’t seem to play at his best in conditions below freezing. It’s not just a fluke, but more of a trend now based on the sample size we have in Manning’s cold weather games.
But this coming Sunday the temps are predicted to be “mild” for a January day in Colorado (high of 45, kickoff temp around 38). The wind shouldn’t be a factor either so both QB’s could have a monster day through the air.
I do anticipate this one easily going over the total posted total of 54, so if you are thinking like me you should take that now instead of waiting until Sunday as I think that total will rise. Game wise, I like the Colts to push the Broncos in this one and wouldn’t even be the half bit surprised if they pulled off the upset win. Either way, take the TD and the Colts.
Nuggets: Colts were 11-5-1 ATS this year. Colts are 7-0 ATS in the last 7 meetings between these two teams. The “over” is 8-1 in the last 9 meetings. The Broncos are 0-4 ATS in their last four games following a ATS win (beat Oakland 47-14 in week 17).