Tweet With the Divisional round here, we have two Saturday matchups that, on paper, look fairly easy to predict. One features a hot and cold Colts team thats harder to predict than Mily Cyrus and a Patriots team that seems to defy adversity as if it knew it was coming in advance.
Most pundits, writers, bloggers and fans state the obvious and easy:
Oh, it's Brady, at home, in the playoffs. Duh!
The Patriots are PLAYOFF TESTED.
While others throw around
Team of DESTINY Its OUR time
and ANYthing can happen
I am one going with the latter. Anything COULD happen. Brady and Luck are human. Belicheck has lost a game or two. Cam can't run ALL day. And Harbaugh's Boys will need to do more than High Five their way to victory.
Lets look at the ACTUAL possibilities shall we?
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS @ THE NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS
Tom Brady and Belicheck. The two constants for New England since the beginning of the teams run through NFL history. 17-7, 11-3 at home, 9-2 in cold weather games (Below freezing). That success is as cold blooded as the temp in Foxborough this weekend.
Andrew Luck was 14-30 with 2 sacks and 3 interceptions in the first half against the Chiefs last week but adjustments fixed that to the tune of 15-15 with no sacks and 3 TDs. But he's going up against the king of adjustments, Bill Belichick. He takes away your best weapon and makes you do without. No toys for Luck. Belichick 1 - The Kid 0. Oh and the last time these teams played? 59-24 with 4 luck turnovers turning into three TDs. two via pick six. Beliche ck 2 - The Kid 0. Oh and the Colts gave up 44 to Alex Smith last week WITHOUT Jamal Charles.
Easy Prediction: Patriots 42 Colts 14
The Colts could be seen as one of destiny. They have the new Golden Boy in Andrew Luck. Their coach is on the sidelines this go round and not recovering from cancer. They defied all odds (teams leading by 30 at half in playoff history WERE 21-0 till last week) last week. Donald Brown is averaging over 5 yards a carry since becoming the lead back in Indy and the Pats best defenders, DT Vince Wilfork and Jerod Mayo, who play up the middle, where teams like to run the ball, our on IR. The Patriots were 24th in the league against the big passing play, giving up 36,
and face TY Hilton who was Mr. Big play last week.
Add in more injury to insult, the best performer on offense for Brady last year, Rob Gronkowski with 7 receptions, 137 yards and 2 TD's, is also on the IR.
Even more BUTs:
Andrew Luck soared mightily in postseason play after his freshman year in college: 41-49, 637 yards and 6 TDs in two BCS Bowls for an average of a 95QBR. Not a great chance he wilts in the spotlight.
BUT the right Prediction could be: Colts 35 Patriots 31
Probably what is going to happen is anything BUT Easy for the Patriots. Its easy to say that the Colts are outmatched and that the Patriots should start getting their ski gear ready for the Rocky Mountains. Easy to blindly root for your team for reason so vague that it blinds you to stark realities. But the truh of the matter is Brady and Belichick are tough to beat at home, but much easier to compete with and or beat when there is no Rob, Wes, Vince or Gerard. I am tempted to go the Easy route (who isn't?) but with a fair fight at QB and in the backfields, but with the skill positions much more in favor of the Colts as well as health, I'd probably put my money on the LUCKy Colts.
Probably (But not definitely) the Prediction will be: Colts 28 Patriots 27