The NFL Playoffs are just about to begin, and there are sure to be some riveting match-ups as the playoffs progress.

Here are my 2012 NFL Wild-Card Round Predictions- With everything from Tebowmania to even more of it.


Cincinnati Bengals @ Houston Texans- This is a rematch of the Week 14 match up where T.J. Yates zipped a six-yard touchdown pass to put the

Uh-Oh: Rookie quarterback Andy Dalton and the Bengals' offense has been stellar at times, but against playoff teams they are averaging a mere 16 points per game - The least by a team with a record of 5-11 or better.

Texans in the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. Andy Dalton’s touchdown-interception rate against top-five defenses is 4-7 (Texans’ defense is #1). The difference in this game will be the turnover ratio, and Dalton is a turnover-prone quarterback, while the Texans are second in the AFC in turnover differential (+7). The Bengals are having a surprising 9-7 season, but if you analyze their record, then you will see that that while they are 9-0 against non-playoff teams, they are 0-7 against playoff teams this year. Make that 0-8.

Texans 24, Bengals 13

Difference Maker: The young Bengals’ vulnerability to playoff teams.



    • Also agree the Falcons fate comes down to how well Turner plays and the NYG rush will be too much to handle. But I think the Broncos will get blown out. The Broncos have no offensive weapons but McGahee who will be facing the best run defense in the league. The Steelers won’t let Tebow beat them with his arm or legs.

      • Yes, the Giants defensive line if too strong to let Turner get anywhere. I know that Tebow and McGahee have been struggling, but I expect them to pick it up when it matters most. This game will be like the Jets-Broncos game earlier this season.

    • I got the Bengals covering the 4 pt spread and winning as well. I think Andre Johnson is playing but with 2 hurt hammy’s, he shouldnt be effective. Daniels had a huge game against them in Week 14.

      The 0-7 vs Playoff teams is a bit over-rated. They played SF, Bal(2), Pitt(2), with all 4 games vs Pitt & Baltimore in their last 8 games. They also had that game vs Houston when they met earlier if not for some terrible play-calling on Offense in the 2nd half. Why they were throwing with a 9 point lead allowing the clock to stop was beyond me.

  1. Nice picks Sam. I agree with all except the game with the Steelers and the Broncos… Big Ben would have to be dead for the Broncos to win. Broncos D is good, but Steelers offense is too strong.

    • Without Mendenhall, their offense lacks a major component. I’m sure that the Broncos’ D will take advantage of that. Big Ben will be ineffective and that will hurt his team.

      • Sam, if you keep picking great picks, you’ll be one step closer to your dream of being a sports genius! Great way to pick off the Denver/Steelers game. I know you mentioned Broncos had a chance, but I refused to believe in John 3:16 aka Tebow Tim. Great game, but a big disappointment for the Steelers. WOW.


      • Thanks so much Christian! I felt something about the Broncos in this game- just that they could take advantage against an injured Steelers team. Tebow is simply a magician, as his best career game came in the playoffs- when it matters most.

    • Trust me, you’re not crazy… In fact, when the Texans win, you’ll be even less crazy! I’m sick and tired of all this Bengals talk. They haven’t beaten a playoff team all year!

  2. I agree with all your picks, Sam, can’t trust the Bengals to win, no matter how good they were in the regular season, and I see where you’re coming from with the pick of the Broncos over the Steelers, but with Roethlisberger and Mendenhall banged up, it’s not crazy. Also, you can never count out Tim Tebow. Ever.

    • The Bengals have no chance at winning. They weren’t even that good in the regular season. The only team over .500 that they beat was the Titans.

      You’re right, when you count out Tebow, he makes you pay. Twice.

      • I’m not sure how you can say they have no chance at winning when they had that game when they met the 1st time around. Cincy had the toughest schedule in the NFL this year and in their 0-7 vs playoff teams they were blown out just once at Pittsburgh. It will be a great game, but I don’t see how it is an easy win vs a Texans team that lost to the Colts in Prime Time, and had to go for 2 to win a game at home because Kubiak was worried about their lack of confidence heading into the playoffs.

      • The reason that the Texans will win is their defense and running game. To win, they must play like the Jets played in the playoffs for the past 2 years. I believe they will do this well, as they will be playing with so much energy, going that this game is the first playoff game for the Texans. Ever. Andy Dalton won’t be able to play on the road at a high level against such a good defense (especially in Houston), as his TD to INT rate against top-5 defenses is 4-7.

  3. I actually do think that Foster will be the key for Houston, but their defense is way over-rated. They don’t really pressure the QB or tally many sacks. They are ranked high but have played Jax twice, Indy twice, Tenn, twice, Cleveland, TB and Miami in week 2 when that offense was in shambles. I think that there is more pressure on Houston as well. Cincy has already taken a step in the right direction and over-achieved thus far.

    Dalton has been struggling lately though. Last 7 gms. 8TDs/8INTs and only a 57% rating

    • The Texans get many takeaways, and they have the 2nd best turnover margin in the AFC (+7). The Texans are hungry for a playoff win, and that is why they will win today.

  4. The Steelers were without Mendenhall once this season and ran for 174 yards against a comparable defense to the Broncos. Additionally, the injury to Von Miller’s hand has reportedly severely limited the rookie’s tackling and ability to maneuver /get leverage against other players…neutralizing the threat he poses.

    Bottom line Denver has to be perfect to win this game, while Pittsburgh needs only to take the Broncos seriously to handle their business.

    • I expect Elvis Dumervil and Champ Bailey to lead the charge for the Broncos’ defense. Bailey, Andre Goodman, and Brian Dawkins will lock down the Steelers’ receivers, while Dumervil and Von Miller bother Roethlisberger, making him a liability. Then, Tebow makes a bit 4th quarter magic happen and the Broncos win.

  5. Things to be learned from this weekend . Matty Ice and the Falcons can’t win in the postseason . Ben Roethlisberger on one leg is not a match for Tebow playing on two . Drew Drees redefines the words “gunslinger “ with a deadly aim . Simply look at his stats for the game against the Lions ?

    Call me naive but the Dolphins are looking at retreads to succeed Sparano . If that’s the case then they might as well recall Don Shula if they’re that damn desperate !

    • Brees stamped himself in as the best quarterback in the NFL. I think that on a neutral field, he could outdo Rodgers. Sadly, if they play in the NFC Championship, it’ll be in Green Bay, where Brees can’t play (in the cold).

      • brief

        Lambeau Field is anything but neutral should they meet up in the NFC title game .

        I was under the impression that LSU wanted to be seen as national champions ? Last night Trent Richardson made that defense seem so damn porous . Now what as far as the AP (Assoc. Press) is concerned as they may well talk about a co-joint national champion or declare OK State as their titlist . Go ‘bama . LOL,LOL ,LOL !!!

        I’m having fun seeing the list of candidates that the Bucs are dredging up as prospective candidates for their vacant coaching position ! Brian Billick , Brad Childress , Mike Sherman and Marty Schottenheimer . What part of retread is awry on these people within the Bucs’ front office . They’re obviously not looking for credibility at all !

        The < Washington Wizards are 0-8 within the NBA at present what chance that they end up surpassing the Sixers’ or Nets respective worst season totals of 9-73 or 12-70 respectively ? Albeit that it’s a truncated season of 66 games .

        tophatal ….

      • Drew Brees struggles in cold weather, and that’s why the Packers would win that game.

        There’s no doubt that the AP will declare Alabama #1. The joint title was only a possibility if the National Championship game was close, but Alabama crushed LSU, and shut them out!

        As far as the Wizards go, I think they have too much talent (John Wall, Javale McGee, Andray Blatche, Jordan Crawford) to keep going like this, they’ll pick it up at some point.

  6. If Harbaugh can come in and change the whole mindset and environment with the Niners then what the hell were Mike Nolan and Mike Singletary doing while they were there as coaches ?

    tophatal ………..

  7. > Jim Irsay is now doing his level best to add to his team’s woes . That’s three people he’s now fired but his biggest decision will be concerning the future of Peyton Manning . And no Vernon Davis won’t be sending Mike Singletary any type of card of attesting to his change in temperament . Your thoughts ?

    If the Harbaugh brothers face off against each other in the upcoming SB you can bet there’ll be family tension not merely amongst the siblings but also with other members of the immediate family .

    tophatal …………

      • Well that’s Davis for you ! He thought he had the world at his feet but like every other dumb @#s athlete who shows no sign of maturity upon their entrance into the NFL …….. they need to be taken down a notch or two !

        tophatal ……………………..

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