By Matthew Cunha
In my 7,698 days of being a Boston sports fan, I have never felt as confident as I do in the Patriots upcoming divisional round game vs the Houston Texans. Even Las Vegas feels confident in their abilities, favoring the Pats a 16 points. Mark Paulette in his blog yesterday explained how the Patriots have a checkered history in games that they’re held as such a heavy favorite. They’ve won all of these such games, but have rarely covered such large spreads. That being said, Patriots fans will have more time to worry about the other more competitive divisional round playoff games. For those who don’t know what they should be cheering for in the other games, you came to the right place.
#1 A Kansas City Chiefs victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers – With Tom Brady playing to the level he has the season, in order to beat the Patriots you are going need to be able to keep up with the Patriots offensive production, and you need a playmaking quarterback; Pittsburgh has both. Seeing the likes of Antonio Brown and Le’veon Bell torch Miami’s defense last week struck fear in me. Especially since the Patriots defense has gone unchallenged. When faced with an elite quarterback (Ben Roethlisberger), perhaps the league’s best running back (Bell), and maybe the league’s best wide receiver (Brown), we don’t know how the Pats defense will be able to keep up. Because of this, I say we avoid the Steelers at all costs and take our chances with the much less powerfully built Kansas City Chiefs offense. Despite the all-around play of the Chiefs, they just don’t have the firepower to come to Gillette and steal a trip to the Super Bowl. Maybe Ben Roethlisberger’s ankle injury will ail him just enough for the Chiefs to come away with the victory.
#2 A Dallas Cowboys victory over the Green Bay Packers – In the words of Stephen A Smith: “There’s no bader man than Aaron Rodgers.” As a Pats fan, I would rather deal with the youth of the Dallas Cowboys than that man. The Brady vs. Rodgers comparisons would be annoying, but a Dallas Cowboys victory over the Packers would relieve us from that conversation. Other than my own selfish reasons, Rodgers is capable of scoring with Brady. The Cowboys are a bit of an unknown because they’ve been led by rookies Prescott and Elliot which doesn’t give them much of a track record. However, this short track might be a benefit, because they weren’t around for the early playoff exits that have plagued the Cowboys in recent years. The Packers would have won 9 games in a row by the time they played the Patriots in a Super Bowl. Let’s hope that the Jordy Nelson injury allows the Cowboys to end Aaron Rodgers run.
#3 An Atlanta Falcons victory over the Seattle Seahawks – This one is the least important because I think the winner of Green Bay and Dallas is headed to the Super Bowl. I cannot see either of these team stopping the Dallas Cowboys who would have stopped the red hot Aaron Rodgers. However, if I’m wrong, I would rather play a fragile Atlanta Falcons team with no experience than the experienced Seattle Seahawks seeking revenge from two years ago. The Seahawks came into Gillette earlier this year and came out with a win, a rare occurrence indeed. Best to avoid the Seahawks.
Matthew Cunha is a producer on The Drive, weekdays 4pm to 6pm on 92.9fm The Ticket and streaming live at DriveShowMaine.com. Follow us on Twitter, @DriveShowMaine and “Like Us” on Facebook, Drive Show Maine.