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Reply To: ♦ NFC Wild Card Playoffs ♦ Sunday 1/10/16

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Mike Handzelek’s

NFL Premium Sunday Rematch Survivor

Sunday, January 10, 2016
Seattle Seahawks vs. Minnesota Vikings (NFL) – 1:05 PM EST Minnesota Vikings Premium Play

Play Title 8 Star NFC Rematch Survivor
Play Selected Point Spread: 4.5/-110
Not many prognosticators had Minnesota winning the NFC North but here they are. Those who witnessed the 1st meeting between these 2 will probably shy away from the Vikings as well. However, revenge has a way of raising up its head when you have a vastly healthier defense cropping up on the revenger the 2nd time out. There are still many out there that say Seattle is the best team in the NFC. I say “OVERRATED”! Yes, they’re a talented bunch with playoff experience. But their true SU record is 9-7 (if the Detroit game was officiated correctly) with 2 losses to St. Louis, a team the Vikings beat earlier. So what changes this time around? Well, this time around Minnesota won’t have their talented FS & SS (Harrison Smith & Andrew Sendejo) out of the lineup for most of the game OR SLB Anthony Barr exiting early with an injury. This changed the whole complexion of the game as QB Russell Wilson (34/8 TD/INT ratio, 68.1 completion %, 553 rushing yards, 110.1 passer rating) easily picked apart the 2nd-stringers with consistent downfield strikes to WR’s Doug Baldwin (78 receptions, 1,069 yards, 13.7 YPC & 14 TD’s) & Tyler Lockett (51 catches, 664 yards, 13 YPC & 6 TD’s). The Purple People Eaters have awesome blueprints laid by the Rams on harassing Wilson with a spy to cut down on long runs when coverage is tight. Another drastic change will be to the Seahawks running game. Thomas Rawls is out which could force a rusty Marshawn Lynch into service. If Lynch is unable to declare himself good for action, RB Christine Michael will be pushed into the # 1 role in the backfield. My bottom line says QB Teddy Bridgewater gets the ball to their NFL rushing-leading RB Adrian Peterson (1,485 yards good for 4.5 yards a pop & 11 TD’s) early behind strong run-blocking from C Joe Burger & Co.. This will set up the play-action game nicely for Bridgewater to go over the top. How effective S Kam Chancellor remains to be seen. Let’s now look @ some key numbers. HC Pete Carroll is just 1-4 in his career SU on the road in the playoffs (only win coming back @ Washington in 2012). Remember that Seattle did NOT play a road game getting to the Super Bowl the last 2 years. Another hard-to-deny fact is that Super Bowl losers who come back the next year to play a team off back-to-back SU/ATS wins are a ticket-ripping 1-9 SU & ATS. Even though the Seahawks’ defense has generated some nice stats & accolades, Zimmer’s Purple & Gold “D” have also done the job more often than not recording 48 sacks, 65 hits & 227 hurries this season. This should keep Wilson scrambling if key personnel STAY intact. The weather in Minneapolis should hover between 15-26 below F. with the wind chill which could favor the home team getting points. The last time Minnesota played an outdoor playoff game was in 1976 when HC Bud Grant & QB Fran Tarkenton were on the sidelines @ Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington when they beat the Los Angeles Rams 24-13. I’m ready to jet up to TCF Bank Stadium to play the Minnesota Vikings (but buy to + 7 1/2 -190) where we want it with a home dog who hangs around the number frequently– as my 8 Star NFC Rematch Survivor!