Carnell Knowledge 2013 : Championship Weekend

NFC/AFC Championship today.  3 out of the 4 teams were all in the same place last season.  For all the talk of “parity” we get a rematch of Patriots/Ravens and the 49ers are back again after losing to the Giants a year ago.  Both games are tough to call, so I could 2-0 or 0-2 pretty easily.

Ravens at Patriots
PATRIOTS

Baltimore always plays well against New England.  Steam rolled them in the playoffs 4 years ago.  Almost beat them a year ago to make the Super Bowl.  The Week 3 game where Baltimore won in Foxboro was one of the ‘replacement ref’ games.  Which I haven’t heard one person mention this week.  A win is a win, but that game was one of the worst games when it cames to the officials.  The game dragged, it was on national TV Sunday Night with the announcers pointing out the bad calls.  And at one point the crowd started a “BULLSH*T” chant after a call.  What crowd gets that riled up about Week 3?  And Bill Belichick grabbed an official after the game.  It was that bad.

Saying that, I am picking New England.  Pats easily beat Houston last week.  And they had a first round bye.  Usually that can help a team, but Baltimore is also coming off a Double Overtime game.  A game where running back Ray Rice said it was one of the toughest games he’d ever been in with the cold conditions.  I see their run of playoff wins coming to an end.

49ers at Falcons
49ERS
Last week I just said after picking Seattle “it’s the Atlanta Falcons and Matt Ryan, nuff said”.  I was almost proven right.  Now do you look at the Atlanta team that went up in the first half against the Seahawks or the one that choked away a lead and barely won?  I go for the latter.  Also lost in the Atlanta/Seattle game was after the field goal there was time left on the clock.  Falcons did an onside kick?
After Matt Bryant made a 49-yard field goal to put the Falcons ahead for good with eight seconds remaining, Atlanta attempted what looked like an onside kick. Matt Bosher kicked short and Seattle’s Heath Farwell quickly covered the ball at Seattle’s 46-yard line. What were the Falcons doing by attempting an onside kick when they already had the lead? Well, it wasn’t supposed to be an onside kick.
“We did not execute exactly how we wanted to,’’ coach Mike Smith said. “These things happen in a ballgame. We were able to go out there those last two plays and get the win.’’
Smith wouldn’t go into much more detail about how the Falcons ended up handing the Seahawks decent field position. He implied that the play was supposed to be a squib kick. But he wouldn’t say if Bosher didn’t get the message or if the play just wasn’t executed properly.

No way I’m picking a team that messed up like that.  Atlanta was up by 2 so a long Seattle field goal would’ve won it for the Seahawks. 49ers are better coached than that.

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