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Wednesday, January 05, 2005

I'll Take the Vikings

Minnesota and Green Bay played twice this season, and Green Bay won both games by scores of 34-31, both on field goals as time expired, as chance would have it. Even so, I see that Vegas favors the Packers by 6 or 6.5 depending on the casino. I really expected that line to by Green Bay by 3.

Reasons to go with Minnesota: 1) People are down on them after they lost their last game to the Redskins, and there's going to be some overreaction. 2) The Vikings dropped that three-point decision up in Green Bay earlier this year in a game they played without Randy Moss. 3) The Christmas Eve rematch in the Metrodome was won by Green Bay on the strength of two separate fourth-and-goal TDs. 4) The Vikings secondary is a weakness, and Robert Ferguson is still unlikely to play after the clothesline hit he suffered against Jacksonville a few weeks ago. 5) On the flip side of #1, there's some over-estimation of the mystique of Favre/Lambeau/cold weather. The Pack are probably overrated at home, as they recently lost to the aforementioned Jags and needed another late FG to get past the Detroit Lions, 16-13.

I'll follow up with similar posts on the other wild-card matchups as the week goes on. How bizarre is it that all four games are rematches from the regular season?

UPDATE: To be clear, I am picking the Packers to win but the Vikings to cover.