It’s Round 2 of the Rocking the Suburbs playoff preview. Maybe this time Graham and I will differ on games.
Baltimore Ravens at Tennessee Titans
Chris: Whoever bet that either Joe Flacco or Kerry Collins would be starting in the AFC Championship Game at the beginning of the season would be the Nostradamus of this generation. These two teams are identical. Picking the winner of this game is like trying to pick Amy Winehouse out of a crack whore police lineup. Both these teams have crappy QBs, great defenses, good special teams. The only difference I can see if that Titans coach Jeff Fisher has facial hair and the Ravens coach does not. Edge, Titans.
Graham: It’s always fun for fans when an NFL game is decided by the first team to 10 points, as will be the case in this game. I like Tennessee, but I may find other things to do while this game is going on. I do need a haircut this weekend, and I really need to put together that bookshelf the wife and I bought at Ikea last week.
Speaking of Ikea, god I hate that store. The second you walk in, you become a rat in a maze. There’s no freedom to wander around, you have to follow a set path. Of course, they throw so much crap out there the path is only as wide as one shopping cart, so if some rube decides to stop and admire the cabinet shelving display for the kitchen, forget it, you ain’t going anywhere. Then, when you see something you like, you have to write down a code number, head to the warehouse, and load it up yourself.
So I was already pretty bitter as we were leaving the store. Then we get to the parking lot, and in order to fit this thing in the trunk of my wife’s Volvo, we have to move the car seat from the middle seat to the seat behind the driver. So my wife is doing that, I’m tending to the kid while trying to shove this 50-pound bookcase into the trunk, and some lady in a huge SUV decides to park in the spot next to us. There were 25 open parking spots a few feet away, but that’s not good enough for her. So now we have to close the car doors to where there’s a sliver of an opening that sunlight would struggle to get through while loading a bookcase and moving a car seat so this lady can shave 30 seconds off her walk. You know what? Screw you.
San Diego Chargers at Pittsburgh Steelers
Chris: I’m so mad at myself for not picking the Chargers last week. I knew the Colts would lay an egg. They never play well against San Diego. It’s just so damn hard to bet against Norv Turner, or not. San Diego basically played their title game and Super Bowl at home the last two weeks, beating the rival Broncos to get in the playoffs and beating the uber-soft Colts to move on. The Steelers eat them alive.
Graham: Last week I flippantly dismissed San Diego’s chances against Indianapolis and didn’t even bother with a preview. Folks, it’s that kind of sports analysis that keeps you coming back to Rocking the Suburbs.
There might be a temptation to look at the Chargers coming back from 4-8 to make the playoffs and knocking off Indy without much from LaDainian Tomlinson (who’s quickly becoming the Vince Carter of the NFL when it comes to injuries) and think they can knock off a Pittsburgh team when you don’t what you’re going to get from Ben Roethlisberger, who nearly died on the field a few weeks ago.
To which I say: forget it. Call it a hunch, but I’m pretty sure Darren Sproles, who’s about as big as my left leg, isn’t getting 300+ yards against the Pittsburgh defense. And given they needed every one of those yards to beat Indy, it ain’t happening against Pittsburgh. Steelers take it.
Carolina Panthers at Arizona Cardinals
Chris: Would you rather have Jake Delhomme or Kurt Warner as your QB? I could labor over this question for about 10 hours and still not come up with the right answer. I do know that I can’t make any sort of rational judgments about DeAngelo Williams. The mancrush is peaking right about now. If DeAngelo and O.J. Mayo somehow ended up at the same party as me, I’d probably have a heart attack figuring out which one I’d rather sleep with, I mean, hang out with, hang out with! To paraphrase the philosopher Napoleon Dynamite, I must do what my heart tells me and pick the Panthers.
Graham: Last week I thought I made a pretty good case why Arizona wasn’t going to beat Atlanta, given they get scored on more than Nautica Thorn. Then they had to go and win. Thanks guys.
But I really like this Carolina team. As good as Arizona is in the air, the Panthers are as good on the ground. And understand, I don’t praise DeAngelo Williams easily. I usually have nothing but enmity towards University of Memphis products. And if the Panthers’ ground game negates the Cardinals’ aerial game then forget it.
And while Carolina’s defense gave up 30+ points in their last two regular season games, I don’t see it happening again. Carolina takes it.
Philadelphia Eagles at New York Giants
Chris: How the hell does this guy have a Super Bowl ring?
Seriously, how could anyone bet on this guy to win a big game? And how did I find myself cheering for him last winter anyway? Having to cheer for Eli Manning was one of the hardest decisions of my life, probably like that time Queen Latifah decided not to go back for fourths at the all-you-can-eat buffet. That just goes to show you how much people hate the Pats and Boston fans. Call my stupid, but it’s time to grow a pair and pick an upset. I’m going with the Eagles.
Graham: Last week I picked Philly over Minnesota even though I don’t trust them one bit. And you know what? Screw it, I’m taking them this week too. I really don’t like the Giants right now. They seem way too pleased with themselves, and for some reason the usually abrasive New York media is taking it easy on them.
Losing Sweatpants Burress has taken away too much of their offense. For God’s sake, anytime you need big games from Amani Toomer, you know you’re in trouble. Who’s next, Mark Bavaro?
I still don’t love Philly. And I can’t help but think I’m going to regret this when I’m watching Andy Reid trying to call his fourth timeout in the second half this weekend. But I’m just not loving this Giants team. I’m taking Philly.