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Wild Card Weekend, Part 3

I'm not really into it after yesterday.  I ripped a pillow by throwing it, almost cracked my coffee table by slamming my hands down on it, and kept my laptop far away (for fear of throwing it across the room.)  Anyway, here's a quick preview of today's games.

Think of this as Sunday's Open Playoff Thread.


New York (football) Giants @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-3) - 1:00 pm EST on FOX

Tampa has been resting since week 16.  Garcia has played only a few series so his ailing back shouldn't be an issue.  He's been a Giant killer, going all the way back to his days in San Fran.  Last year, he led Philly past the Giants in Philly for a Wild Card win.  For the lack of a better term, he's got their number.

New York played everyone against the Pats and came up just short.  I'm not big on moral victories, but that loss should have boosted their confidence heading into the playoffs.  Problem is, they lost C O'Hara (listed as doubtful), which I think will be a bigger loss than losing Shockey a few weeks ago.  I'm also not sure how much they'll miss LB Mitchell if he doesn't play (he's listed as Questionable), but I'm sure they'd rather have him available.

The Giants D will be key, but Garcia knows that Jim Johnson defense that Spagnulo runs from his year in Philly last year.  I'm not saying he knows everything, but it can't hurt.  Tampa is listed as 11th in the NFL in rush yards per game at 117.0, but they have been decimated at injuries at the position.  Tampa passes for 223.7 yards per game so they're used to having to pass.  Gruden would probably prefer to pass every down if he had his way.

The Bucs D is 1st in the NFL against the pass at 170.5 yards per game.  They're 17th in rush defense at 107. per game, so I expect a heavy dose of Brandon Jacobs and the 4th best rush offense at 134.3 yards per game, especially with LB June listed as doubtful.  The Giants should be able to make Tampa one dimensional, so we'll see how they handle the pass game.  I think they need a big day from the D-Line to have a shot.  If they can pressure with 4, they should have a good shot at getting turnovers.


Playing in Tampa, where the Bucs tried to keep all tickets in the hands of Floridians, I'll take the Buccaneers and the points.  I'm 0-2 so far, so here's hoping for .500.

Update [2008-1-6 13:34:13 by TexSkins]: The Preview for the Chargers and Titans below:

Tennessee Titans @ San Diego Chargers (-9.5) - 4:30 pm on CBS

The Titans are wicked hurt. WR Roydell Williams (broken ankle), G Benji Olsen (back), and TE Bo Scaife (lacerated liver - ouch) are out. C Kevin Mawae is doubtful. RB LenDale White and QB Vince Young are questionable.

And they're playing in San Diego. No numbers are needed for this one. TEN snuck into the playoffs as it is, but they can't compete with San Diego unless QB Rivers does something stupid. And then repeats it a few times.


I'll take San Diego and all 9 points. I bet they win by 14+ and I bet LT is watching from the sideline by the third quarter, resting for IND.

I'm going to update this with the final game preview later on.

Enjoy the day of football.