Site Editor Matt Loede’s NFL Divisional Playoff Predictions

Time for the final 8 in the NFL to battle it out, and here we go with our Divisional Playoff predictions:

Arizona (10-6) at New Orleans (13-3) – The opener of the divisional round pits a team that couldn’t stop the Packers and allowed 45 points against a team that lost their last three after winning their first 13. The Saints needed a week off, and they are going to need to come out and get some of that magic from the first 13 weeks back. Look for the Saints to throw early, and pick on that Cards secondary that couldn’t stop Aaron Rodgers. Drew Brees and that offense will get back on track, and I can’t see the Cardinals magic from a season ago lasting again this year, the Saints will move to the NFC Title game after a sound win in what will be Kurt Warner’s last game. New Orleans 34 Arizona 24

Baltimore (9-7) at Indianapolis (14-2) – The Ravens feel that the road they traveled last season which saw them win two games before falling in the AFC Title game in Pittsburgh will happen again. Think again. Indy may have lost their last two games, but they are the better team, and will win this game. Everyone wants to say that the Ravens are battle tested, and they may be, but the Colts are a better run stopper than the Pats were, and Joe Flacco hasn’t been very good the last few weeks, including last week vs the Pats where the was just 4-for-10. It’ll be close for three quarters, then the Colts will pull away to host the title game next week. Indianapolis 23 Baltimore 10

Dallas (11-5) at Minnesota (12-4) – This is going to be one great matchup. Can Brett Favre and the Vikings have a big game against a Cowboys team that has been rolling? Dallas showed its muscle vs the Eagles last week, but they didn’t have Adrian Peterson and he’ll make a difference in this game. Look for Jared Allen and the Vikings D to put pressure on Tony Romo, forcing a few mistakes that will make a difference in this game that will determine who takes on the Saints for the NFC Title. Minnesota 21 Dallas 17

New York Jets (9-7) at San Diego (13-3) – The Chargers have been high flying and put on a show on both sides of the ball after they stared the season slow. The Jets have an upset in mind, and weather won’t be a factor, and their run game will keep the Chargers off the field. Thomas Jones needs to have a big game, and Mark Sanchez needs to stay upright and not make mistakes for the Jets to win. The Chargers will again not be able to get over the hump, as the Jets D will harass Philip Rivers enough to pull out a close win. New York Jets 20 San Diego 17

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