Did you read last week’s Games to Watch article? I hope you enjoyed it. I didn’t. I’m not saying it was bad…that’s for you to decide…but boy, was it wrong. As we discussed in the article, all playoff games are must-see. The goal of this article is to predict which games will be more fun to watch than the others. Last week I went 0-2. There were two games that were incredible to watch and two that…well, weren’t. The Titans-Ravens game had more intensity than any game I can remember and the Packers overtime victory over the Seahawks was a complete nail biter. The Panthers and Colts wins (by 19 and 39 points respectively) were relative yawners.
This week, we’re in much the same situation. All four games look great on paper. They’re all must-see games by the simple fact that we’re down to the best 8 teams in the league and by Sunday night, we’ll know which 4 teams will play for the Division Championship. Still we are faced with the challenge of picking the 2 games that will be “better” than the other 2 games. While last week is proof that, even in the playoffs, not every game is great, predicting the future is anything but easy. How ironic that the Pete Rose interview plays on the TV behind me as I write. We’ll end with the same segue as last week. Let’s see if we can predict which must-see games are muster-see than the others…
Tennessee at New England Sat. January 10 @ 8:15pm ET on CBS
Summary: Every bit as hard-hitting as last week’s game, but with a completely different atmosphere.
Hot Tip: Tom Brady will show why this year’s MVP voting should’ve been a 3-way tie.
Whenever the Patriots face the Titans, it’s a great game. In the past, I’ve labeled this match-up the “Game of the Century”. I’ll stop short of that label this time because I’m feeling so humble at the moment. This is going to be one helluva game. It will be every bit as tough and hard-hitting as last week’s Titans-Ravens. The difference is the relationship between the two teams and their respective fans. There is absolutely no love between Nashville and Baltimore. Conversely, the discussion this week has been nothing but mutual respect for two tough, well-coached, excellent football teams. Both teams have played through more than their share of injuries to get to this game and it’s simply a shame that one of them has to lose. The game itself will have all the same characteristics. It will be a well-played, close game that is won by the team that is able to weather the cold and execute their game plan better. And it will be one of the better games you’ve seen all year.
Also on Tap
Green Bay at Philadelphia Sun. January 11 @ 4:45pm ET on Fox
Summary: A game between two teams playing their best football of the year. This one could easily go either way.
Hot Tip: Brett Favre has that flair for the dramatic but Ahman Green has been a machine all year-long. Either one is a safe bet but Green will get it done in this one.
The Packers have got to be emotionally exhausted. Following their incredible Monday Night victory in Week 16, they rode the Playoff Scenario rollercoaster in Week 17 relying on the Arizona Cardinals to get them into the playoffs. With no time to rest, they battle to an overtime victory over a tough Seattle Seahawks football team. Now, they leave the friendly confines of Lambeau Field and go on the road to Philly.
The Eagles are well-rested and playing at home. McNabb is back to his old self and have won 10 of their last 11. They have a sense of having something to prove. They’re getting sick of going home after the division championship game. Bottom line… both of these teams have a great story to tell, will play with emotion, and deserve to be here. Like the Patriots-Titans game, this one will be well-played and close. Enjoy and we’ll see you next week.
Oh yeah, just in case, don’t forget to check out the other two games too…