The Seattle Seahawks have a fairly easy road to the conference championship, and once there I don’t see any real threats to the throne. The Dallas Cowboys have had an excellent season and beat Seattle in Seattle, but they have to get through the Lions and Packers first. Green Bay played scared against the Seahawks. Maybe assuming the Seahawks run right into the final is in poor taste, but will the Cardinals really find a way to win without their quarterback? In fact, I’ve got the Carolina Panthers winning in the first round with a losing regular season record. Let’s get into our NFC picks for this edition of our 2015 NFL Playoffs Predictions.
Wild Card Round
3. Dallas Cowboys OVER 6. Detroit Lions
The Detroit Lions will have Ndomukong Suh back after he won his suspension appeal, but I think that will just light a fire under the best offensive line in football. The Dallas Cowboys are built to beat teams like the Lions. They have a balanced offense with weapons all over the field, and they have the offensive line to control this game the entire way. I don’t think the Lions know how to win the big game. If DeMarco Murray is able to play close to 100%, the Dallas Cowboys will win this game on home field. Even if he isn’t effective, Tony Romo has been dominant lately, deserving all of his MVP talk.
Cowboys 31 – Lions 21
4. Carolina Panthers OVER 5. Arizona Cardinals
The Arizona Cardinals don’t have a quarterback. They have an elite defense and may dominate that side of the ball, but the Cards are not going to be able to move the ball in Carolina. The Panthers finished the year hot to steal the division from the Falcons and Saints. I don’t necessarily believe in Jonathan Stewart or Cam Newton, and I could see this game going either way. Low confidence, but would you rather have a burning hot Panthers team led by Newton or a cold Cardinals team led by… whoever is under center this week?
Panthers 17 – Cardinals 9
1. Seattle Seahawks OVER 4. Carolina Panthers
The Panthers have had a nice run, but the Seattle Seahawks are the best team in the NFC right now. They’ll be able to run and throw on this Panthers defense, while the limited weapons of the Carolina Panthers stumble under the pressure of the 12th man in Seattle. I don’t think the Panthers have a chance.
Seahawks 38 – Panthers 17
2. Green Bay Packers OVER 3. Dallas Cowboys
Tony Romo, in the cold, on the road. I know he’s put some of his December struggles behind him, but I can’t imagine him having a good game at Lambeau with everything on the line. The Packers aren’t exactly a balanced offense, but I take Aaron Rodgers in this matchup all day. Dallas will need to run the ball effectively and keep the Packers from running away with it early. I just don’t think the Cowboys will keep pace on the road.
Packers 30 – Cowboys 24
1. Seattle Seahawks OVER 2. Green Bay Packers
All chalk, but this is about match ups. The Green Bay Packers may have learned from their “half the field” approach to Richard Sherman, but I don’t think it matters. They played the first matchup this year scared and they don’t match up well with the Seattle Seahawks. A mobile playmaker quarterback, a bruising running back, and the top secondary in football. Green Bay doesn’t run the ball well in these situations, and in Seattle they’re in for a tough game. Seattle will be fresh following a bye and an inferior opponent in their only playoff game. I think the Seahawks have an easy route to another Super Bowl appearance and it’s their NFC Championship to lose.
Seahawks 27 – Green Bay 21
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