January 10th, 2014
New Orleans (+8) at Seattle — Saturday 4:35PM FOX (46+/-)
It seems strange that a fairly hot Drew Brees-led team would be underdogs by over a touchdown, but that’s just how good Seattle has been at home. Since Russell Wilson has been under center, the Seahawks have only lost once in two years at CenturyLink Field. There’s a 90% chance of rain and wind gusts of 20-30MPH expected, so don’t plan on too much offense in this one. Although scoring big numbers is the Saints reputation (and for good reason with Sean Payton at the helm), they’re going to have to find a way to grind out a win against the ball-control offense and stingy defense of Pete Carroll’s Seahawks. The game will be televised on Dish Network FOX channels nationally and called by Kevin Burkhardt and John Lynch.
Indianapolis (+7) at New England — Saturday 8:15PM CBS (52+/-)
Both teams’ #1 offense options are out for this one (Reggie Wayne for the Colts and Rob Gronkowski for the Patriots), and the weather is supposed to be terrible (90% chance of rain and wind gusts), so why is Vegas expecting so much scoring? That should be obvious, and it rhymes with Tom Brady. OK, it just is Tom Brady. Brady has been putting up big numbers no matter who he’s throwing to for a decade, and that won’t stop here. Plus, even though Luck is a 2nd year QB, he’s proven the ability to put up points. The NFL expects this one to be high-flying and analysts want to see if Luck really is the next Brady/Manning-type. We might find out in Foxboro on Saturday night. This game is on CBS on Dish Network and will be called by Greg Gumbel and Dan Dierdorf.
San Francisco (-1) at Carolina — Saturday 1:00PM FOX (42+/-)
With Ric Flair-gate out of the way, fans can concentrate on what should be one of the more intriguing games this weekend — and the only game at a normal NFL time. San Francisco is being touted as the “hottest team in football” right now, though the Panthers might have something to say about that, since they’ve won 11 of their last 12 (the 49ers have won 12 of their last 14). This game was pathetically low scoring when Carolina beat San Fran 10-9 in Candlestick Park two months ago, but both teams are hitting all cylinders right now. If the Panthers #1 defense can keep Kaepernick in check, expect the Panthers to roll into their first NFC Championship game in a decade. This one should have great weather as it’s shown on Dish Network FOX channels coast-to-coast, called by Joe Buck and Troy Aikman.
San Diego (+9.5) at Denver — Saturday 4:40PM CBS (54.5+/-)
San Diego is the true wild card this weekend — bother literally and figuratively. Denver is the overwhelming favorite, and the preeminent Super Bowl favorite all year, but any team with Philip Rivers will remain dangerous. John Fox and Peyton Manning will no doubt orchestrate points with Wes Welker likely back in the lineup (Vegas bills this one as the highest point total of the weekend), but it might come down to defense as someone will have to get stops to advance. New England will be watching this one closely so they can steal home field advantage if the Chargers were to pull off the upset. Weather looks great for this one as Jim Nantz and Phil Simms are set to call the game for CBS on Dish Network channels.
Check back next week for the NFC and AFC championship previews, info and channel guides!
Categories: Channels & Shows