Site Editor Matt Loede’s Picks for Wildcard Weekend

Wildcard weekend is here in the NFL, and with it it’s time to give the picks for the four games this weekend:

NY Jets (9-7) at Cincinnati (10-6) – The Jets witewashed the Bengals last week 37-0, but this is a whole different ballgame. First off, the game is in Cincy, and the Bengals are going to actually show up and play this time. The Jets played well last week, they ran the ball well, and never allowed the Bengals in the game. The Jets can run the football as well as anyone in the league, and their defense is going to try and pressure Carson Palmer. Look for them to make sure they don’t have to have Mark Sanchez win the game, and they will control the tempo with the run game. Look for the Jets to move on to Indy next weekend. NY Jets 24 Cincinnati 14

Philadelphia (11-5) at Dallas (11-5) – The Cowboys have put the stigma of being a choker in the month of December behind them. They beat the Eagles last week to win the division, and shut down a team that had won six in a row and was playing very well on offense. This week is a huge over the hump week for Tony Romo, who needs to come out and exercise the demons of playoffs past. I think it will happen. The game is going to be a slugfest, and the two defenses will dominate. Look for lower scoring game that the Cowboys eek out for their third win over the Eagles in the 09 season. Dallas 13 Philadelphia 7

Baltimore (9-7) at New England (10-6) – It’s not the Pats of old going into the playoffs. They lost WR Wes Welker last week, and will need more from the running game and Randy Moss. The defense is going to need to stop Ray Rice, and make sure to cover Derrick Mason, the best pass catcher on the Ravens. Look for New England to come out right away throwing, and make sure they build a lead to take away the Ravens run game. New England 24 Baltimore 10

Green Bay (11-5) at Arizona (10-6) – Another rematch from the week ago, as the Pack dominated the Cards in Arizona. Look for Green Bay to win this one as well, as they will use their defense to pressure Kurt Warner and force some mistakes. The Cards also come in banged up, as Anquan Boldin is not going to be 100 percent, meaning the Pack will shift plenty of coverage to Larry Fitzgerald. Ryan Grant and Aaron Rodgers will control the game, and the Pack will walk away from Arizona with a win. Green Bay 27 Arizona 14

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