My Take: Picking the NFL’s Divisional Playoff games

NFL

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO/WQRF) — As entertaining as the NFL playoffs were last weekend they should be even better this weekend. Last weekend I went 4-2 on my picks in the Wild Card Round. I missed on the Browns-Steelers game and on the Rams-Seahawks game. So here we go again…

Starting with that big one up North on Saturday the Rams against the Packers. The teams that have a chance to beat the Packers are teams that play physical, are great defensively and that can run the football. That describes the Rams.

They showed against last weekend what they’re made of by sacking Russell Wilson five times, and they pretty much shut down what might be the best receiving tandem in the NFL in D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett.

Aaron Donald is the best defensive player in the league when he’s healthy. The rib cage injury he sustained last weekend probably means he’ll be less than 100 percent, but an 80 percent or 90 percent Aaron Donald is still a load to handle.

Then there’s Leonard Floyd, the former Chicago Bear. He’ll be coming off the edge trying to put more pressure on Aaron Rodgers. And the Rams might even have the antidote to Davante Adams in Jalen Ramsey. He might be the best cornerback in the NFL.

Remeber what the Buccuaneers with their strong defense did to the Packers and Aaron Rodgers in mid-October? That’s what the Rams want to do, throw the Packers’ offense off its game. That Buccaneers’ 38-10 win is proof that it can be done.

What the Rams don’t have is a reliable quarterback. Jared Goff is inconsistent and he’ll be playing with a bad thumb Saturday. The Rams could also be without key receiver Cooper Kupp. He’s questionable.

I can’t see the Rams offense scoring a lot of points. That means the Rams defense might have to hold Rodgers and the Packers’ to 24 points or less for the Rams to have a chance to win. I don’t see that happening either.

I’m taking the Packers over the Rams 28-20 putting the Packers in the NFC Championship game for the second straight year.

My Take on the other games this weekend:

Saints 34 Buccaneers 31
It’ll be a Brees-Brady shootout. The Saints will jump out to a big lead, Brady will rally the Buccaneers, but the Saints will hold on to beat the Bucs for the third time this season.

Ravens 28 Bills 24
This will be a great game. Lamar Jackson though will make one of those crazy, long touchdown runs that’ll be the difference again. Plus the Ravens have been involved in more big games the last two years than the Bills have. The Bills aren’t quite ready for a championship game, but watch out for them next year.

Chiefs 41 Browns 20
It’s been a fun season, finally, for Browns fans but their bubble will burst Sunday afternoon. The Browns defense has a difficult time stopping average offenses from putting up points. They get a break in that Sammy Watkins won’t play in this game, but there’s still no way the Browns can handle Mahomes, Hill, and Kelce.

Enjoy what might be the best weekend of the year in the NFL with four big games and eight primo teams!

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