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Our NFL Playoff predictions in the opening round started off just as the regular season ended as we went a perfect 4-0. Round 2 is up next and these games are even easier to make predictions on than the opening round in my humble opinion. We'll take a look at the 4 games being played this weekend that will determine the AFC and NFC Championship Game squads and see if we can't pull together another perfect round.
Record against the point spread: 123-88
Baltimore Ravens at Denver Broncos -10
The Broncos blew out the Ravens in Baltimore earlier this season, but that doesn't mean they'll do it again simply because this playoff game is being played in Denver. Baltimore got in a huge hole early in that game and then was forced to give up the rushing attack altogether, but we believe the Denver defense is overrated and that the Ravens are better than they displayed offensively. Denver will still likely pull out the win at home but they have no business being favored by double digits in what should be a high-scoring, back-and-forth type of game.
Green Bay Packers at San Francisco 49ers -3
This is also a rematch of an earlier season meeting when the 49ers won fairly easily against the Packers back in week 1. San Francisco used a fierce run-based gameplan and solid defense to thwart the Packers in that game and I see them doing something similar on Saturday night. Green Bay's defense is only strong when they can pin their ears back with a lead, and the 49ers offense is much more explosive now with Colin Kaepernick at the helm than they were in the first meeting when Alex Smith was in charge. San Francisco is at home and should cover this small point spread while forcing plenty of mistakes from Aaron Rodgers.
Seattle Seahawks at Atlanta Falcons -3
Atlanta has been one of the best teams in the NFL this year, while Seattle has struggled badly when traveling on the road to play anyone with a pulse on defense. That being said, the Seahawks are every bit as good as the Falcons and have a stronger defense as well as a stronger rushing attack. The one negative about Seattle is that they are starting a rookie quarterback, but Russell Wilson makes decisions well beyond his years. The Seahawks win this one outright and finally expose a Falcons team that has played a ridiculously easy schedule.
Houston Texans at New England Patriots -9.5
This is the toughest of the round 2 NFL Playoff games to make a prediction on, especially after the Texans were dominated on the road against the Patriots just weeks ago. New England has trouble stopping the running game and Houston can run for days here, but they'll only be able to committ to that attack if their defense finds a way to stop Tom Brady and company. The Texans struggle to stop big passing attacks and will surely give up points, but I don't believe they'll be in a huge hole like the first game. That will allow them to use Arian Foster on the ground and keep this one close in a high-scoring game where both teams could eclipse 40.
*Due to writer error (IE me not submitting the article properly before I went to work today), predictions on both Saturday games will not be counted in the final record even though both were easy winners.