NFL Championship Weekend Predictions

I decided not to do predictions for last weekend because I thought the games were rather predictable.

This weekend, however, features two games that could cause some serious storylines. The next two weeks are surely going to be filled with interesting stories on blogs, in newspapers and through any other source of sports writing you can find.

With no notable injuries on any of the four remaining rosters, this weekend promises the very best playoff football we could ask for.

Baltimore Ravens at New England Patriots 3:00PM EST

This game is going to be a battle between a high-powered offense and a stingy defense. There’s no question that Brady can win big games but this may be the last stand for Ray Lewis and Ed Reed. They have both added another great year to their Hall of Fame resumes, not to mention great seasons from Terrell Suggs, Bernard Pollard and Haloti Ngata. Brady won’t do to this defense what he did to Denver’s and the Ravens offense just isn’t that good; in other words, this is going to be a low-scoring affair. Gronkowski and Welker are two of the best targets in the game and I don’t think Baltimore can stop both of them. The Ravens offense is at its best when the defense causes turnovers but Brady isn’t going to put interceptions right in their hands as T.J. Yates did last week.New England’s defense isn’t very good but the Ravens haven’t been winning because of their offense. I think their defense will keep Baltimore close but the offense won’t be able to outscore Brady.

Prediction: New England wins 27-17

New York Giants at San Francisco 49ers 6:30PM EST

A month ago I would’ve bet any amount of money the Giants wouldn’t make it this far. I didn’t expect them to catch fire and become the hottest team in the league. It’d be hard to believe anyone who says they did. Not to mention the 49ers, who had a very good regular season but nobody expected them to make it this far either. But now that it’s the situation, I couldn’t think of a matchup I’d rather see (besides the Eagles playing of course). The Giants lost a close game in San Francisco earlier this season but the boys in blue are a different team right now. Perry Fewell deserves a world of credit for pulling this defense together just in time, but the 49ers defense is legit; they’ve been the best all year. Eli Manning has been shredding up defenses with all the time he’s been given in the pocket. I can assure he won’t see that much time tomorrow; Aldon and Justin Smith are going to be all over Eli and the secondary is like a blanket when it comes to coverage. The Giants aren’t going to score a lot but if their defense plays at the level it has been, the Giants will win. Smith was lucky to win last week and I think his luck has run out. Eli is a big game quarterback and he’ll do just enough to win in the nasty field conditions. I’m predicting a defensive battle that sees New York heading back to the Super Bowl.

Prediction: Giants win 17-10

Sorry Mr. and Mrs. Harbaugh but I’m seeing a rematch in the near future. Whether I’m right or wrong, I can guarantee the games will not disappoint.

Agree or disagree with my predictions? Let me know.

Jason Arias (@ImTheRinger)

Roundup of Polls for New York Mets All-2000′s Team

Here are the links to all the polls. They will remain open for about 2 weeks and then I will post the results. Please spread the word so we can get a lot of votes. Remember, this is not solely based on stats and skills but on your favorite players. Your favorites aren’t always the best, especially when you’re a Mets fan.

Intro post: http://wp.me/p21MMK-1y

Catcherhttp://wp.me/p21MMK-1C

First Base: http://wp.me/p21MMK-1G

Second Basehttp://wp.me/p21MMK-1I

Third Basehttp://wp.me/p21MMK-1K

Shortstop: http://wp.me/p21MMK-1N

Outfieldhttp://wp.me/p21MMK-1Q

Starting Rotationhttp://wp.me/p21MMK-1T

Bullpenhttp://wp.me/p21MMK-1V

Closer: http://wp.me/p21MMK-1X

Thanks,

Jason Arias (@ImTheRinger)

New York Mets All-2000′s Team: Closer

To me, the closer spot has always been the weak spot for the Mets recently. With that being said, this should be a pretty easy vote.

 Closers

Francisco Rodriguez – 3-6 3.71 ERA, 35 saves, led league in games finished in 09, All-Star selection

Billy Wagner – 5-5 2.37 ERA, 101 saves, 10.9 K/9, 4.26 K/BB, 2 All-Star selections

Braden Looper – 6-12 3.22 ERA, 57 saves, 2.29 K/BB

Armando Benitez – 18-14 2.70 ERA, 160 saves, led league in games finished in 00, 2.71 K/BB, All-Star selection

This wraps up the ballots for the New York Mets All-2000’s Team. Thanks for participating.

Jason Arias (@ImTheRinger)

New York Mets All-2000′s Team: Bullpen

The bullpen has had many fan favorites but it’ll be hard to not vote for that great bullpen of 2006. Pick up to 3 and write in whoever I may have missed.

 Relievers

John Franco – 13-16 3.90 ERA, 59 games finished

David Weathers 12-12 3.22 ERA, 42 games finished,

Roberto Hernandez – 8-6 2.79 ERA 25 games finished, 2.11 K/BB

Darren Oliver – 4-1 3.44 ERA, 81 innings in 45 games, 2.86 K/BB

Duaner Sanchez – 10-2 3.48 ERA, 29 games finished

Pedro Feliciano – 19-13 3.13 ERA, 61 games finished, led league in appearances (08,09) 8.3 K/9, 2.21 K/BB

Chad Bradford– 4-2 2.90 ERA, 3.46 K/BB

If you think anybody got left off, you can write them in.

New York Mets All-2000′s Team: Starting Rotation

Here’s where the going gets tough, choosing the starting rotation because there’s been so many. Choose up to 5 and write in whoever isn’t included.

Starting Pitchers

Al Leiter – 65-49 3.43 ERA, 1 All-Star selection, 2.02 K/BB

Steve Trachsel – 66-59 4.09 ERA

Tom Glavine – 61-56 3.97 ERA, 300th win with the Mets, 2 All-Star selections

Pedro Martinez – 32-23 3.88 ERA, 8.6 K/9, 3.39 K/BB, 2 All-Star selections

John Maine 38-29 4.01 ERA 2.01 K/BB

Oliver Perez – 29-29 4.71 ERA, 8.6 K/9

Orlando Hernandez – 18-12 3.88 ERA, 8.2 K/9, 2.29 K/BB

Johan Santana – 29-16 2.78 ERA, 3.23 K/BB, led league in ERA, games started and batters faced (2008), 1 All- Star selection

There are certainly plenty of other options you can write in.

New York Mets All-2000′s Team: Outfield

This should be the best section for position players. There are so many to choose from and you can choose up to three outfielders.

 Outfielders

Benny Agbayani – 210 games, 21 home runs, 87 RBI

Jay Payton – 340 games, 33 home runs, 127 RBI

Derek Bell – 144 games, 18 home runs, 69 RBI

Roger Cedeno – 297 games, 14 home runs, 78 RBI

Timo Perez – 372 games, 18 home runs, 114 RBI

Jeromy Burnitz – 219 games, 37 home runs, 99 RBI

Cliff Floyd – 468 games, 81 home runs, 273 RBI, 31 outfield assists

Mike Cameron – 216 games, 42 home runs, 115 RBI,

Carlos Beltran – 677 games, 127 home runs, 466 RBI, 4 All-Star selections, 3 Gold Gloves, 2 Silver Sluggers

Shawn Green – 164 games, 14 home runs, 61 RBI

There are plenty of other people who can be written in: Carlos Gomez, Moises Alou, Endy Chavez, Angel Pagan, Ryan Church, Gary Sheffield, Tsuyoshi Shinjo, etc.

 

New York Mets All-2000s Team: Shortstop

Shortstop will probably be the biggest landslide but we’ll give it a shot anyway.

 Shortstop

Rey Ordonez – 315 games, 4 home runs, 95 RBI’s

Jose Reyes – 737 games, 63 home runs, 325 RBI’s, 301 SB, 2 All-Star selections and a Silver Slugger

Rey was great but this should be easy. If for some reason you want to write in Anderson Hernandez or anyone else, feel free to do so.

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