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NFL Weekend with John Brockway

NFL Weekend with John Brockway

NFL CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND GAME PICKS

Last week: 3-1
Playoff Record: 6-2
Regular Season Record: 160-96

AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME

PATRIOTS AT BRONCOS: THE PATRIOTS AND LEAGUE’S THIRD-HIGHEST SCORING OFFENSE (29.1 PPG) FACE OFF AGAINST THE BRONCOS AND THE LEAGUE’S FOURTH-BEST SCORING DEFENSE (18.5 PPG) IN WHAT COULD BE THE FINAL MEETING EVER BETWEEN TOM BRADY AND PEYTON MANNING. BOTH TEAMS HAVE PLENTY OF POSTSEASON EXPERIENCE BUT WILL NEED MORE THAN JUST THEIR HALL-OF-FAME QB TO WIN THE GAME AND HEAD TO THE SUPER BOWL.

FIVE QUESTIONS:

1. CAN THE BRONCOS RECEIVERS MAKE THE BIG CATCHES WHEN THEY COUNT MOST?

2. WILL THE DENVER RUNNING GAME SHOW ENOUGH TO MAKE THE PATS DEFENDERS HONOR THE PLAY-ACTION PASSING GAME?

3. HOW WELL WILL THE BANGED-UP PATRIOTS DEFENDERS (COLLINS, HIGHTOWER, JONES, MCCOURTY) PLAY?

4. WILL THE PATS O-LINE GIVE TOM BRADY TIME TO LET ROUTES DEVELOP?

5. WHICH DEFENSE CAN FORCE A TURNOVER AT A KEY TIME TO SET UP THEIR OFFENSE FOR AN EASY SCORE?

MATCHUP TO WATCH: PATRIOTS TACKLES VS BRONCOS EDGE RUSHERS

PICK: PATRIOTS 27-21

NFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME

CARDINALS AT PANTHERS: A GREAT MATCHUP OF THE TWO TEAMS WHO HAVE BEEN THE BEST IN THE NFC ALL SEASON LONG. THIS WILL BE THE FIRST CHAMPIONSHIP GAME FEATURING TWO HEISMAN TROPHY WINNERS AT QB AND ALSO TWO QB’S WHO WERE #1 OVERALL PICKS.

FIVE QUESTIONS:

1. CAN CARSON PALMER AVOID THE MISTAKES AND ALMOST MISTAKES HE MADE IN THE RED ZONE LAST WEEK?

2. WILL DAVID JOHNSON AND THE CARDINALS RUNNING GAME GET BACK ON TRACK AGAINST CAROLINA’S 4TH-BEST RUN DEFENSE?

3. HOW WILL THE PANTHERS SECONDARY MATCH UP WITH THE BIG PLAY ABILITY OF THE ARIZONA WR’S?

4. CAN CAM NEWTON GET IN POSITION AND SUCCESSFULLY CONVERT KEY SHORT-YARDAGE SITUATIONS WITH HIS LEGS?

5. WHICH DEFENSE WILL BE ABLE TO PUT THE MOST PASS-RUSH PRESSURE ON THE OPPOSING QB?

MATCHUP TO WATCH: CARDINALS WR’S VS PANTHERS SECONDARY

PICK: PANTHERS 31-28

INJURY REPORT


• PANTHERS DE JARED ALLEN OUT FOR NFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME WITH BROKEN BONE IN HIS FOOT

• PATRIOTS ILB JEROD MAYO OUT FOR SEASON WITH SHOULDER INJURY

• PATRIOTS LB JAMIE COLLINS EXPECTED TO PLAY IN AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME WITH OBLIQUE STRAIN SUFFERED LAST WEEK

• PATRIOTS SPECIAL TEAMS CAPTAIN AND FIVE-TIME PRO BOWLER MATTHEW SLATER (SHIN) QUESTIONABLE FOR AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME

• BRONCOS S/PR OMAR BOLDEN OUT FOR SEASON WITH PARTIAL PCL TEAR IN KNEE

• BRONCOS DB CHRIS HARRIS JR. EXPECTED TO PLAY IN AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME DESPITE SEVERE BONE BRUISE IN HIS LEFT SHOULDER

POSSIBLE CHAMPIONSHIP GAME RETURNS

• PANTHERS RB FOZZY WHITAKER (ANKLE)

IN THE NEWS

• BILLS HIRE KATHRYN SMITH AS QUALITY CONTROL-SPECIAL TEAMS COACH; SMITH IS THE FIRST WOMAN TO HOLD A FULL-TIME NFL COACHING POSITION

• TITANS HIRE INTERIM HEAD COACH MIKE MULARKEY AS FULL-TIME HEAD COACH

• TITANS HIRE FALCONS ASSISTANT COACH TERRY ROBISKIE AS OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR

• TITANS PROMOTE DEFENSIVE ASSITANT DICK LEBEAU TO ASSISTANT HEAD COACH/DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR

• DOLPHINS HIRE COLTS ASSISTANT COACH CLYDE CHRISTENSEN AS OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR

• COLTS HIRE FORMER DOLPHINS HEAD COACH JOE PHILBIN AS OFFENSIVE LINE COACH

• BROWNS RELEASE OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR JOHN DEFILIPPO FROM HIS CONTRACT; EAGLES HIRE HIM TO SAME POSITION

• BROWNS HIRE TITANS DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR RAY HORTON TO SAME POSITION

• BROWNS HIRE FORMER COLTS OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR PEP HAMILTON AS ASSOCIATE HEAD COACH/OFFENSE

• CHIEFS PROMOTE PASSING GAME COORDINATOR BRAD CHILDRESS AND QB’S COACH MATT NAGY TO CO-OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR

• EAGLES FIRE DEFESNIVE COORDINATOR BILLY DAVIS, HIRE FORMER LIONS HEAD COACH JIM SCHWARTZ TO THE POSITION

• EAGLES HIRE FORMER BROWNS OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR JOHN DEFILIPPO AS QB’S COACH

• EAGLES HIRE FORMER CHARGERS OFFENSIVE CORRDINATOR FRANK REICH TO SAME POSITION

• 49ERS FIRE OFFENSIVE COORDINATO GEEP CHRYST AND NINE OTHER POSITION COACHES

• JAGUARS PROMOTE DEFENSIVE LINE COACH TODD WASH TO DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR

• JAGUARS EXTEND HEAD COACH GUS BRADLEY’S CONTRACT ONE SEASON THROUGH 2017

John Brockway can be heard talking NFL on the Spadora on Sports Radio Program. Visit SpadoraOnSports.com to see his blog. 

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