Welcome back to another edition of Against the Spread! We are on the precipice of the precipice of the Super Bowl. The penultimate game before the ultimate game. These playoffs have made this a difficult series to get off the ground for me as I have continuously underestimated Ryan Tannehill and Derrick Henry.
Scors has written not one, but two excellent breakdowns you should read with my supplemental gut feelings before texting your bookmaker and asking him to ignore last weeks losses and provide you a little more credit.
I go into Championship weekend an ugly 5-7-0. A chance to finish at .500 or better still exists so lets build some momentum for the big game in two weeks.
Game 1: Tennessee Titans @ Kansas City Chiefs (-7) O/U 52.5
Derrick Henry has defensive backs making business decisions in the secondary. He’s big and no one wants to tackle him after a year of human car crashes. He’s broken the record for yards after contact in a playoffs. He threw Earl Thomas out the club and turned him into a lead blocker.
So, after watching Derrick Henry seek out Thomas after a week of trash talk, Frank Clark, who is apparently in the Chiefs third-worst run defense has decided to poke the bear.
Am I prepared to overreact as a result of ignoring the Titans hot streak? You bet your sweet bippy. Kansas City has had another historic offensive season and they have the four fastest role players in the league. HOWEVER, Tennessee scores even faster than KC does. No team scored in fewer than three minutes than the Titans. They also have the kind of battering ram running back who can work the clock and put Andy Reid in the kind of situations he has never succeeded in. Close game, running clock, where he’ll likely have 1 or no timeouts.
The Pick: Tennessee +7 and the OVER 52.5
This is a field goal game one way or the other and don’t let the Titans run first offense cut down on your over hopes. We’re going to have a great early game to set us up for a defensive struggle this evening.
Game 2: Green Bay Packers @ San Francisco 49ers (-8) O/U 46.5
Hey, did you guys know that San Francisco picked Alex Smith number one overall the year that California-native Aaron Rodgers also declared for the draft? Get ready to see this video one hundred thousand times today.
San Francisco axe murdered Green Bay earlier in the season and gave Aaron Rodgers arguably the worst game of his entire career. Their defense and running game have carried them throughout the regular season and playoffs. San Francisco has about five world class running backs and they can all shred you in their unique ways. Richard Sherman has held team’s first options in Alcatraz all season.
The big questions for this game all revolve around Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers. Can he dig deep and give us a vintage performance and pick the scoring up? Can he impose his will on the game and bring another title home to Titletown? We haven’t seen this kind of performance from him all year. It’s hard to believe this team had such a great season, but here they are. Revenge games are fun, even if they’re over a decade old.
The Pick: Green Bay +8 and the Under 46.5.
Eight is too many points for Jimmy G to win by in his first playoff run. Even if Green Bay doesn’t win, they’ll keep it closer than one score. Neither team is going to put up the points necessary to push us over the over. Ball control and low scoring in a good old fashioned smash mouth football game.