Pick with Analysis
The 2nd Divisional Playoff Game on Saturday features the Green Bay Packers visiting the Arizona Cardinals in a Game that kicks off in prime time at 8:15 pm est. The Cardinals are -7 point favorites with a total of 50 at 5 dimes sportsbook.
Plenty of bettors are oNCe again in love with the Packers off last weeks big win over the Redskins but we think this may be a case of falling in love with a team based on the most recent results. Don’t forget, last weeks Game saw the Packers trail 18-17 late into the 3rd quarter before Rodgers and company caught fire and put the Game away.
We prefer to look at this Game by considering the last 10 Games of the season for both teams. In that stretch, we saw Green Bay lose to the Lions, Bears, Cards and Vikings. In fact, after starting the season 6-0, the Packers managed to go just 4-6 the final 10 Games, before waking up in the 4th quarter against the Redskins. Meanwhile, all Arizona did was rattle off 9 straight wins before losing a meaningless final week Game to the Seahawks. Looks to us like one team was focused on the task at hand while the other was trying to find its way.
While the Cards are top 10 in every major statistical category, the Packers come in with the 26th ranked passing offense. Something was broken offensively in Green Bay this year. Think they can turn it around at the flip of a switch? We don’t. Something that broken doesn’t get repaired overnight. Consider the opponent last week and chalk up the resurgeNCe to that.
The feeling here is that the Cardinals win every phase of this Game and in the end, win going away in decisive fashion. Our model agrees, predicting a Cardinal win by anywhere from 8 to 16 points using various time frame parameters, i.e. using stats from the entire season, last 7 Games, last 4 Games, etc.
Bottom line, this is a Packers team that has looked mediocre since their 6-0 start. This is a Packers team that looked mediocre in last weeks playoff Game in Washington for all but one quarter. One quarter isn’t enough for us to buy in, especially when you consider that their opponent the Cardinals, has looked like a playoff team from the get go. Cardinals -7