4* NFC Wild Card SMASH
Atlanta vs. NY Giants,
01/08/2012 13:00 EDT,
Score: 2 - 24
Point Spread: -3/+102 NY Giants
4* NFC Wild Card SMASH on Giants -3
The Giants have basically been playing playoff games for close to a month, and that will serve them well against an Atlanta squad that hasn't won in the playoffs with Matt Ryan and typically hasn't fared as well on the road.
It was the pass rush that propelled New York to its 2007 Super Bowl win, and I believe its pass rush will be the difference today. The Giants produced 48 sacks to match Baltimore for third in the NFL despite playing with an unhealthy D-line for much of the year. Pro Bowler Jason Pierre-Paul (16.5 sacks) has been amazing and Osi Umenyiora and Justin Tuck are as healthy as they've been all season.
Besides the pass rush, I like a big game from Eli Manning to be another difference maker. Manning, who finished fourth in the NFL in passing yards (4,933), sixth in passing touchdowns (29) and seventh in passer rating (92.9) should be able to exploit an Atlanta defense that ranks 20th in the NFL against the pass.
The Falcons are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games vs. a team with a winning record and 2-6 ATS in their last 8 games as a road underdog of 3.0 points or less. The Giants are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games vs. a team with a winning record and 5-1 ATS in their last 6 playoff games. Take New York.