An epic AFC North clash headlines Saturday's wildcard round and with the Baltimore Ravens riding high having snuck into the post-season, the Pittsburgh Steelers are ready to end their season abruptly.
The Wildcard round can be unpredictable, teams can come out of nowhere and get on a roll but that won’t be the case in the late Saturday playoff game when the Baltimore Ravens head to Heinz Field to take on the Pittsburgh Steelers.
They’ve been bitter rivals ever since the Ravens were created back in 1996 and it’ll be a bruising affair between the two AFC North heavyweights. Baltimore stole the sixth seed having won their final game and got the help they needed with the Chiefs beating the Chargers so they’ll be full of joy knowing they are lucky to even be in the post season.
The Steelers have waited a few years to get back into the playoffs, with their last appearance ending in an embarrassing loss against the Tim Tebow-led Denver Broncos. They would love to condemn that memory to history and it’ll be even more satisfying by having a convincing win against the Ravens.
The Ravens have been poor on offence over the past few weeks and whilst they’ve impressed on defence, they’ve been very poor against the passing game, which is a real strength of the Steelers. Go for Pittsburgh to gain a real statement victory, take them to win by the -3 handicap at 83/100 as well as being the first to ten points at (2). They’ll race to a lead that Baltimore simply can’t claw back.
Earlier in the day sees two teams that limped over the finishing line as the beat-up Arizona Cardinals take on the NFC South winners in the Carolina Panthers. The Cardinals did all their work to get in to the post-season early and it’s good they did, injuries have halted the team’s momentum and they’ve been average since quarterback Carson Palmer was lost for the season.
Carolina have won their last four, although against what many would say as inferior opposition, and have every reason to believe that they can win this one. Arizona have a good defence but with an anaemic offence, back the 7-8-1 Panthers to win here at 37/100 and should Ryan Lindley play as badly as the Falcons did last week, go for them also to score over 30 points too.