NFC Divisional Playoffs
(6) Saints at (1) Seahawks
Saints: We kept hearing the same question about these guys all week last week, could the Saints get that monkey off their back and win their first playoff game on the road? The road hasn’t been too kind to the Saints as of late as they finished the regular season with 3-5 record on the road. I was so impressed by what I saw from the Saints on Saturday night in Philadelphia. They established a running game. It wasn’t necessarily the flashiest but they moved the ball down the field and that allowed Brees to get the ball to his receivers. What truly impressed me was their defense. They contained one of the best running backs and held him to under 100 yards rushing and they kept Nick Foles in the pocket. That win set up a rematch with the best team in the NFC on Saturday in Seattle. We will all see if the Saints can keep rolling.
Seahawks: I’ve been calling this team the best team in football all year-long. I’ve been very high on them. Russell Wilson has established himself as a top ten quarterback in the game today in just his second season. As good as they were, they did lose a game a home where they are so dominant and it’s safe to say that they were exposed in a way. To beat the Seahawks at home, you have to establish your game plan and keep their defense on the field and get pressure on Russell from a defensive standpoint. Despite that, they are still the one seed in the NFC and the road to the Super Bowl will more than likely go through the 12th man. On Saturday, they face a team who will come in with all the momentum in the world and will have revenge on the mind.
Prediction: When I saw these two match-up a few weeks back, this was by far the worst I’ve seen the Saints look all season long. Their offense was slow, they couldn’t get into any type of rhythm and they looked extremely lazy on defense. The Seahawks dominated in all three phases and held an offense that normally lights the scoreboard up and only gave up one touchdown the Brees and company. The Saints need to establish Ingram on the ground early and use those quick passes to those explosive receivers. The Seahawks have the defense to match-up with the Saints offense. They need to be physical with those receivers at the line and they need to really keep an eye out for Darren Sproles. I like the Seahawks in this one. Seahawks 26 Saints 21