Falcons, 1 p.m.
They’re without their best pass rusher in Chris Clemons, they’ve got a rookie quarterback, Russell Wilson, and they were down 14-0 to a team with an ailing quarterback.
Yet everybody wants to pick the Seahawks!
Look, I know they’ve got two great cornerbacks who could very well hold the excellent Falcons receiving corps in check, but Atlanta is the better team here.
And I understand that Wilson is no ordinary rookie.
However, the No. 1 seed is at home, and QB Matt Ryan, as much of a playoff flop as he’s been, will turn it around now. He’ll go to Tony Gonzalez early and often in what is the future Hall of Fame tight end’s farewell tour.
Gonzalez finally gets that ever-elusive playoff win to help cement his legacy.
Atlanta must establish some kind of running game, and it will.
Snyder says: Falcons 26, Seahawks 20.
Texans at Patriots, 4:30 p.m.
OK, so the Texans lost three of their last four regular season games and their offense was fairly lackluster against the Bengals.
But when the whole world is against you, that’s when it’s time to shine.
Tom Brady and the Patriots sliced and diced the Texans during the regular season.
And I’m taking the Texans why?
Arian Foster and J.J. Watt, their offensive and defensive leaders.
The Texans have to strike first, and if they do, they’ll gain control and eat up time of possession by using their running backs and tight ends as they did against Cincinnati.
Snyder says: Texans 24, Patriots 21.
AARON SNYDER can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (606) 326-2664.