INDIANAPOLIS – With the NFL playoffs starting Saturday, Colts.com has targeted six public figures, insiders who cover the league and former quarterbacks to predict the course of post-season play.
Rick Gosselin has covered the NFL since 1975 and has been an NFL and general sports columnist with The Dallas Morning News since 1992. In his career, he has covered two summer and one winter Olympics, five World Series, four Final Fours, both the Stanley Cup and NBA playoffs, a World Cup in addition to 31 Super Bowls.
Gosselin, a Detroit native, additionally holds a vote for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and his career is as distinguished and respected as any NFL writer.
Here are Gosselin’s predictions:
WILD CARD WEEKEND
Kansas City over Colts: Health goes a long way this time of year. The Chiefs have all the key players on the field who opened the season for them. The Colts do not.
Cincinnati over San Diego: The Chargers surged into the playoffs with four of their last five games at home where the field is friendly and the temperatures warm. Brutal cold and a brutal defense await the Chargers in Cincinnati.
Philadelphia over New Orleans: There may not be a better home team in the NFL than the Saints. But this one’s on the road in the great outdoors where wind, cold and precipitation can play havoc with Drew Brees’ passes. The Saints have lost three consecutive road games to good and bad teams alike.
San Francisco over Green Bay: The cold weather favors the team that can run the ball and play defense. That’s the 49ers.
Denver over Kansas City: The Broncos have Peyton Manning and the Chiefs do not.
New England over Cincinnati: The Patriots have Tom Brady and the Bengals do not.
San Francisco over Seattle: The 49ers figured out how to beat the Seahawks the last time they played them.
Carolina over Philadelphia: Cam Newton’s legs will give the Philly defense fits.
Denver over New England: The Patriots have Brady but the Broncos have a better team around Manning. Plus the home field.
San Francisco over Carolina: Two great defenses square off but Frank Gore will be the difference.
SUPER BOWL XLVIII
Denver over San Francisco: Manning wins his second Super Bowl.
Check back in 60 minutes for another playoff prediction from a celebrity, insider or former star quarterback.