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Kibbles and Picks 2015-2016 Championship Round

January 19, 2016
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By any measure, this past Divisional Round was one heck of a good weekend of playoff football. Every single game was extremely competitive and filled with late heroics and great plays and just the right amount of weirdness.

Even with all of the ups and downs, Stella and I managed identical 3-1 records. We were both validated in both of our Saturday picks. New England battled their way to a victory against the Chiefs, ending Kansas City's 11-game winning streak in the process. In the later game, we got to watch the wildly entertaining end to the Green Bay/Arizona match-up. Despite the best efforts of Aaron Rodgers and company, the Cardinals won it in overtime thanks to a huge game from Larry Fitzgerald.

Meanwhile, we split the games on Sunday. Stella's belief that Seattle could upset Carolina was mistaken, though not by nearly as much as it looked when the Panthers were up 31-0. Carolina made me sweat more than I anticipated, but they ultimately got me the win. My seemingly poor pick of the Steelers came closer to paying off than I ever would have guessed considering their injury issues. Still, Stella knew that Denver would come through on their home field and the Broncos wound up holding serve and getting the W.

And so we're left with just two games on this weekend's Conference Championship docket, just one of which sees us in disagreement.

Stella and I are both rooting for the Patriots to take down the Broncos in the AFC title game. Denver's strong defense and mostly-broken quarterback will more or less balance one another out in terms of on-the-field results, but Tom Brady and company look reasonably healthy and ready to go. In this battle of strength against strength, we like New England's chances.

As to the other game, Stella really liked the look of Carolina in the last round and thinks that Seattle's comeback was more a product of the Panthers easing up than anything else. She doesn't expect any such letting up against the Cardinals. My take is that Arizona is one of the most if not THE most complete teams we saw this season. While there's no denying the excellence of Cam Newton and the rest of the Panthers, I think that the Cardinals have what it takes to go into Carolina and hand the team what would be just its second loss of the year. Either way, this match-up is filled with game-breaking talents on both sides of the ball. Offense, defense, special teams, you name it the potential is here for some exciting plays.

While I might be behind, it isn't quite time to throw in the towel. If the Cardinals can pull off a relatively mild upset, I can pull into a tie with Stella. From there, we just have to wait and see what the Super Bowl brings. With just a couple of lucky breaks, I might just be able to salvage a meager portion of my prognostication dignity.

Stella is unconcerned.

(winners in caps)

ALLEN'S PICKS

Sunday, Jan. 24

NEW ENGLAND at Denver

ARIZONA at Carolina

Divisional Round record: 3-1

Postseason record: 5-3

STELLA'S PICKS

Sunday, Jan. 24

NEW ENGLAND at Denver

Arizona at CAROLINA

Divisional Round record: 3-1

Postseason record: 6-2

Last modified on Tuesday, 19 January 2016 20:55

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