Monday, January 24, 2011

NFL: Championship Pick Results

[Be sure to stay tuned. FSPI's Super Bowl pick will be coming up the Wednesday before the game. In the mean time, I will have at least a couple more season wrap up posts (yeah, yeah, "and the crowd goes wild")]

Winning teams in bold.

Packers (APR, SRS, Line) @ Bears
When the Packers have been beat this season, it's (mostly) happened when the offense has struggled to score, and facing teams that could run the ball (and keep the offense off the field).
The Bears mostly managed to do that—the Packers only had two drives longer than 44 yards, one of which ended in an interception. But a long touchdown drive, and a short field for another touchdown left the Bears in a 14-0 hole at halftime. Still, that might have been enough, except the Bears' offense struggled until 3rd-string QB Caleb Hanie was brought in late in the 3rd quarter. And on Hanie's 3rd drive, he threw a pick-6 to B.J. Raji, which was enough to give the Packers the win.
Jets @ Steelers (APR, SRS, Line)
The Steelers continued the theme of first half success, a crucial defensive score, and a weak second half. Roethlisberger's numbers (10/19, 133 yards, 0 TD, 2 INT) look like they belong on the losing end of this game. But both interceptions came on the Jets side of the field (and one on a 4th down try).
And like the Patriots a week ago, the Jets had a long, time-consuming drive (80 yards that took 8:08 off the clock), that resulted in zero points (or two, if you credit the Steelers' subsequent safety to that drive). Their next drive was faster (4:32) and more productive (resulting in a touchdown), but by then there was just 3:06 left in the game, and the Jets' defense was unable to keep the Steelers from running out the rest of the game.

Both of these games will tempt the losing teams (and their fans) with "what if we had played well the whole game" scenarios. But this sort of thing works both ways—if the winning teams had played well for the whole of their respective games, they still would've won, and it wouldn't have been close at all.


APR 2-08-275.0%
APR VH1-16-462.5%
SRS 2-08-275.0%
SRS VH1-14-637.5%
Line 2-05-537.5%