1-1-09: Happy 2009 & NFL Post-Season a la Hammer

Hello again everybody...

First off, let me take the opportunity to wish each of you a Happy New Year. 2008 was an interesting year in a lot of ways. Not the least of which, for yours truly, was the beginning of The Sports Take back in April.

So here's to hoping that 2009 brings more happiness to you all, and more entertaining sports tom-foolery here at The Sports Take!

Thank you all so much for taking the time to partake of my rumblings and grumblings. The writing in and of itself is what's fun for me. That you folks appreciate it and encourage me to continue is icing on the cake!

I know that I said I wouldn't be back until Friday, and I'll stick to that in terms of Bowl Mania. Suffice it to say that at the time of this writing, I still haven't made it back to .500, and I still trail the Hammer for the overall Bowl Mania Title. Dammit.

But speaking of the Hammer, it's due to him that I'm posting today. You'll recall back in September, the Hammer brought you his NFL season predictions. They were bold and well thought out in my opinion. Unfortunately, the two teams he predicted to be in the Super Bowl didn't even make the playoffs. So admitting that things didn't work out as he'd hoped, he's decided to take his shot at redemption.

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I'll let him explain:

"Well the regular season for the NFL has concluded. As for my predictions I hit on some (Cleveland being asleep instead of being the sleeper team, Minnesota winning the division.) Others I did not (Seattle & Jacksonville in the Super Bowl, Washington making the playoffs) The only thing I can do to redeem myself is offer my playoff predictions in the hope that I can convince people that I know what I am talking about. (I'm not holding my breath.)

Wild card Round:

Atlanta over Arizona: Having seen Matt Ryan in person in Green Bay this season I can say he plays like a 5 year pro instead of a rookie. The Cardinals just look happy to be in the post-season.

Indianapolis over San Diego:The best match-up of the 1st round. I'm tired of hearing how hot the Chargers are after winning 4 in a row and how they have owned the Colts. Last I checked Indy has won nine in a row and they defeated San Diego in San Diego back in November. I like the Colts

Miami over Baltimore: I know Baltimore defeated Miami earlier this year yet for some reason I don't trust the Ravens. Not yet at least. I'll go with the Dolphins here.

Philadelphia over Minnesota: Do you trust Tarvaris Jackson in the post-season? I don't.

Divisional Playoffs:

NY Giants over Philadelphia: I think this will be a real close game that either team is capable of winning but I don't think Philly can consistently stop the running game of the Giants. I'll take the defending champs.

Carolina over Atlanta: Two great running teams meet up in a match-up of NFC South rivals. I like the home team in this one.

Indianapolis over Tennessee: I'll admit, I misjudged Tennessee in the preseason. That being said I think Indy does just enough to knock off their division rival.

Pittsburgh over Miami: It has been a magical season for Miami. However, it ends in the steel city

AFC Championship:

Indianapolis over Pittsburgh: For whatever reason the Steelers have struggled at home when they host an AFC Championship and Indy has already proven they can win in Pittsburgh. Factor in big Ben's health and I have to take the Colts in this one.

NFC Championship:

NY Giants over Carolina: I doubted the Giants earlier this year, I don't anymore. This could be just as good as their week 15 match-up. When in doubt go with the defending champs

Super Bowl XLIII:

Indianapolis over NY Giants: The last two Super Bowl champions meet in Super Bowl XLIII. Manning vs Manning plus it is the 50th anniversary of the greatest game ever played. The Colts win their 2nd title in 3 seasons."

So there you have it. The Hammer hath spoken. Let the NFL Playoffs begin!

That's all for today. I'm back tomorrow with more college football goodness. Until then, thanks for reading!

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