Packers at Bears: The battle for the top of the NFC North. Jay Cutler has a sprained MCL but still plans to play. A loss for Chicago means the team suddenly finds themselves sinking into the wild-card pack instead of leading it and pushing for the division. It's a huge must-win at home for Chicago, but this is where the Packers make a statement. Packers.
49ers at Patriots: Billed by some as a Super Bowl preview, two strong contenders for the best teams in their conferences face off in the middle of the playoff race, and on Sunday Night. Colin Kaepernick is trying to pull much the same trick Brady did in his second season, taking over as starter for a contender and pushing them over the top. Cooler heads might pick New England at home, but do you expect me to pick against my man-crush CK, that tattooed pride of San Quentin, the downfall of the "Dutch Boy" quarterback? Not here I don't. 49ers.
Giants at Falcons: Seriously, we're three picks into the five-pack and I am so excited with the matchups. This is an awesome one. Atlanta has racked up unimpressive win after win against mediocre competition, topped off with an unimpressive loss against what was a 3-9 Panthers team. Now they have a home matchup against a legitimate Super Bowl contender. Which of these teams is the real contender against the likes of Green Bay and San Francisco? I'm taking the Falcons.
Broncos at Ravens: And for matchup #4, we get Jim Caldwell! The Ravens sit atop the AFC North, with the Bengals nipping at their heels. Meanwhile, the Broncos have wrapped up the sorry AFC West, but won't be resting as they are in the thick of the hunt for a first round bye. Can Caldwell get Ray Rice rolling? Will they start taking shots down the field to Torrey Smith again? Will Jim Caldwell erase the memory of the stuck-in-mud Cam Cameron offense? I'm taking the home team in an upset - Ravens! Jim, what say you?
And for the wildcard, I'm taking the game at the absolute bottom of NFL.com's ranking list for this week's games:
Chiefs at Raiders: Cripple fight! Raiders.
Last Week's Results
Jolly Bill: 0-5
Season to Date:
*Legion*: 42-26 (gah, I must do better than Certis!)
Jolly Bill: 19-49