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Playoff Predictions: 'ETVal vs. Greek,' Round 1

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Today, I venture into foreign territory. I don't usually pick football games, which is why I have left that to 'The Greek' throughout the regular season.

I thought, however, that it would be fun to go head-to-head with 'Greek' throughout the playoffs and see how well I do. Amazingly, you'll notice that 'Greek' and I differ on all four games. One of us could be eating serious crow when we do this next week.

So, here are my picks for this weekend's playoff games.

Ed's Playoff Picks

Jacksonville (- 2.5) at Pittsburgh -- It's tough to pick against the Steelers at home, but that's exactly what I'm doing. Pittsburgh lost three of its last four, including one at home to Jacksonville. The Jags are aggressive and they don't turn the ball over. Without injured running back Willie Parker I don't think the Steelers are good enough.

Washington (+3.5) at Seattle -- The Redskins are the hot team right now, and Seattle is limping along without a running game. I know Seattle is at home, but there is something special going on with the Redskins right now. Washington has won four straight, and the Redskins will make that five Saturday, helping Joe Gibbs remember what it's like to taste playoff success.

San Diego (-9.5) vs. Tennessee -- Norv Turner finally seems to have figured out that LaDainian Tomlinson is pretty good. It's a lot of points, but I think the Chargers win big.

Tampa Bay vs. New York (+3) -- This is a game the Giants should win, which is what has to make you nervous as a Giants' fan. The Giants are playing well, though, and that will continue for at least another week. The Jeff Garcia curse finally ends on Sunday.

'Greek's' Playoff Picks

The exhibition season is over, now the real season can begin. After battling back from an abysmal early season performance, to get above the Mendoza line, I coasted into this playoff matchup with ETVal resting my starters for the last two weeks a la Tampa Bay. Now it's time to get serious.

Jacksonville at Pittsburgh (+2.5) - Doesn't it seem strange that every analyst and every expert is taking the Jags in this game? Pittsburgh is at home, is relatively healthy, and has motivation after losing to Jacksonville only last month. Plus with Najeh Davenport now entrenched as the starter, expect the Jags to find a present at the bottom of each of their lockers come Saturday. Nothing can take an opponent's collective head out of the game quite like finding a Davenport Deuce in your cleats.

Washington at Seattle (-3.5) - I'm not sure that a team has ever been happier to be in the playoffs than the Redskins. That being said, Seattle does not lose at home. It probably has something to do with Mike Holmgren being able to stuff his tusks with fresh fish before each home game.

Tennessee (+9.5) at San Diego - Stan Humphries isn't coming through that door, Natrone Means isn't coming through that door, Tony Martin isn't coming through that door. Those are the names of some of the players that were on the last San Diego team to win a playoff game. And people wonder why the Bolts have had trouble selling this game out.

NY Giants at Tampa Bay (-3) - Probably not the most popular pick I've ever made, but nothing terrifies me more as a gambler than taking the Giants in the playoffs only to see the Eli Manning face 5 minutes into the first quarter. Prove me wrong Eli, prove me wrong.

Last Week: 8-8
Season: 123-123-10