Look Back on Wild Card Weekend

By: Joe Berra


With the divisional match-ups set, we got a little bit of everything from this weekend’s NFL Wild Card play. Saturday had the Chiefs win their 11th in a row with a 30-0 blow-out in Houston and a typical AFC North tilt that will lead to fines and suspensions after some inexcusable crap. Some are blaming the officials, but in my opinion, they did a pretty good job and at least some of the blame needs to be on the coaching staffs.

Sunday action saw a frigid defensive battle in Minnesota where a missed 27-yard field goal with less than 30-seconds remaining would have, for all intents and purposes, ended the Seahawks season in the first-round of the playoffs after they’ve played in the last two Super Bowls. The inconsistent Green Bay Packers overcame a slow start to easily cover in the last game on the Wild Card schedule. Let’s have a closer look at the past weekend’s play.

I went 2-2 on my picks as you can read in my Wild Card Weekend Preview. I called an upset in Houston and knew I was doomed right from the opening kick-off. My biggest questions are, are the Chiefs and their defense really that good or is Brian Hoyer really that bad?

The Chiefs did hold their opposition to a league 3rd best 17.9 points per game this season, but throwing four interceptions and fumbling twice (losing one) in a one-and-done playoff game is absurd, and perhaps shows just how weak the AFC South really is. KC dominated in all three phases, getting only seven of their 30 points from an offensive touchdown.

I was kinda sickened from the Steelers/Bengals game, although it was entertaining. We will never know if Big Ben would have moved his offense into prime field-goal territory after two 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalties put the Steelers on the Cincy 17 where Chris Boswell nailed a 35-yarder to give them an 18-16 lead with 14-seconds remaining.

You’ll see in my article I had the Steelers to cover the 2-points and I really didn’t predict the outcome; however I waited and got them at 1½, so I’m taking the victory as it helped get me through the week unscathed.

Sunday started with the 3rd coldest NFL game, and on a personal level, one that pissed me off because the local cable provider here in Costa Rica wasn’t carrying it! How the F*$& is that possible?!? Anyways, give Mike Zimmer and his young team (5th youngest) credit; they held a Seahawks team that had scored 30 or more in 6 of their last eight games (and scoring 29 in one) to 10 fourth quarter points and had the game on the kickers foot.

After punts on four straight possessions, Teddy Bridgewater and the Viking offense got the ball on their own 39. After a 19-yard defensive pass interference call, Bridgewater completed a 24-yard pass to tight end Kyle Rudolph. They then handed the ball off to Adrian Peterson three times for 9 yards, setting up a 27-yard chip shot field goal…and Blair Walsh misses it wide left…Seahawks in victory formation and game over…Seattle 10 Minnesota 9.

The last Wild Card game was one I had trouble picking a winner, so I steered clear of a side and took the OVER. America’s Bookie had the number at 45, and I had a feeling one team could score 45 in this one if the cards fell right, and I wasn’t far off.

After the 1st quarter ended 5-0, a score that included a safety on the Packers second possession, QB Aaron Rodgers was then aided by the wind and helped his team score 17 second-quarter points to lead 17-11 at the half. The Redskins were never able to get it going enough to make it close, with the Packers moving on with a 35-18 victory, beating the OVER by 8-points.

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