Last Week: 3-1
On the Season: 150-109-1 (.579)
4:35PM on Fox
#1 Seattle Seahawks (13-3) over #6 New Orleans Saints (11-5) (SEA by 10, UNDER)
Why: The two teams are pretty even. The difference is the homefield. If this were in New Orleans, I’d pick the Saints. But I can’t say they’re really due for a win in Seattle after being shell-shocked there twice in the last few seasons. The Hawks are 15-1 at home since last year. It’ll be a good game, but if it gets close, New Orleans could get stunned again.
8:15PM on CBS
#4 Indianapolis Colts (11-5) over #2 New England Patriots (12-4) (NE by 8, UPSET)
Why: The Patriots have pulled off so many close games this year. They really should have won nine or 10 games this year, especially the way Tom Brady played in the first half of the season. I have a hard time seeing a mediocre Patriots defense stopping Andrew Luck, whose Colts have a team of destiny look on them. Both quarterbacks should be able to move the ball. If it gets close, both teams have the QB to pull it off.
1:05PM on Fox
#2 Carolina Panthers (12-4) over #5 San Francisco 49ers (12-4) (SF by 1, UPSET)
Why: The Panthers beat the Niners in San Fran 10-9 back in November. Any reason this should be any different on the east coast, at an earlier time? Both teams have two of the best defenses in the league and are led by two talented yet erratic quarterbacks. Personally, I’ll take the team with the more reliable, stronger quarterback and that is Cam Newton. Oh, and the Panthers defense is arguably better.
4:40PM on CBS
#1 Denver Broncos (13-3) over #6 San Diego Chargers (9-7) (DEN by 9, OVER)
Why: San Diego already beat the Broncos in Denver last month, but I think Peyton Manning has that, and last year’s playoff loss to Baltimore in mind. The Chargers’ defense won’t hold him this time. Philip Rivers will keep it close, but it won’t be enough.
Which leaves my conference championship picks at:
AFC: #4 Indianapolis @ #1 Denver
NFC: #2 Carolina @ #1 Seattle
Right on schedule