Monday, January 9, 2012

NFL - Wild Card Playoff Review

Of the four NFL Playoff games that took place this weekend, perhaps none was more exciting than the inexplicable performance that Pittsburgh put on against Denver.
Granted, the Steelers went into the game with significant injuries to key players, but allowing Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow to shred the top pass defense in the NFL was downright embarrassing as the Steelers never quite looked right in this one, which cost them a shot at another possible Super Bowl appearance.

The Broncos surprised the NFL's best defense with a 29-23 overtime win in the AFC Playoff game as Tebow connected with wide receiver Demaryius Thomas for a 80-yard touchdown pass play (on the first play in OT) to advance to next weekend's Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs.
Tim Tebow
Tebow threw for 316 yards and two touchdowns with no interceptions to spark the offense. Meanwhile, the Denver defense sacked Pittsburgh QB Ben Roethlisberger five times, including a huge tackle for loss late in the fourth quarter when the Steelers were driving into field goal range in the final minute of regulation.
Denver advances to play at New England next Saturday night.

Earlier on Sunday, the New York Giants defense dominated in a 24-2 win over the Atlanta Falcons in a NFC Playoff matchup.
Eli Manning
New York's defense limited the Falcons to basically nothing while quarterback Eli Manning threw for three touchdowns and the Giants racked up 172 yards rushing to dominate this one.
Atlanta managed just 64 yards rushing and 247 total yards in offense.
The Giants travel to play against the Green Bay Packers next Sunday afternoon.

On Saturday, the Houston Texans won their first ever playoff game at home against the listless Cincinnati Bengals, 31-10 to advance against Baltimore next weekend.
Arian Foster
The Texans fell behind twice before reeling off 24 unanswered points to coast to the victory behind 153 yards rushing and a touchdown by Arian Foster as well as a defensive touchdown on a 29-yard interception return by J.J. Watt that turned the tide in Houston's favor just before halftime.
Rookie reserve QB T.J. Yates had a touchdown pass of 40 yards to Andre Johnson in the second half as the Texans rolled away to the easy win.
Bengals rookie QB Andy Dalton threw three interceptions in the loss.

Drew Brees
The Saturday night game in New Orleans was close for the first half of the game, but then the Saints went marching in as the real star quarterback of the playoff weekend, Drew Brees, threw for 466 yards and three touchdowns in a 45-28 rout of the Detroit Lions.
Brees led the Saints on five scoring drives in the second half as the Lions simply couldn't stop the New Orleans attack.
Running back Darren Sproles added a pair of scoring runs in the win as well for the Saints, who will next play at San Francisco on Saturday afternoon in the divisional round of the NFC Playoffs.

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