A Pair of Upsets to Look Out For on NFL Wild Card Weekend | Def Pen
NFL Wild Card
NFL Wild Card weekend (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

Ahhh, the most wonderful time of the year has finally come, the NFL playoffs. This year’s NFL season has been a rollercoaster, to say the least. From Dak Prescott being named as the starting QB in Jerry World, to the infamous story of “Deflategate” coming to an end. The Oakland Raiders returned to prominence before seeing their starting quarterback lost right before the postseason, the Green Bay Packers went on a streak to end the season and snag the division title away from the Detroit Lions. And of course, who could forget the explosive Falcons pairing of Matt Ryan and Julio Jones in Atlanta?

Leading the AFC once again are the New England Patriots, and on the other side of the pond, we have America’s team, the Dallas Cowboys. But before we get to see two of the best suit up in their quest for a Super Bowl, the NFL Wild Card weekend comes to us with a full slate of interesting games. But here are two matchups to keep an eye on, especially if you like an underdog story.

NFL Wild Card Weekend

NFL Wild Card
Amari Cooper (Photo via CSN Bay Area)

Oakland Raiders at Houston Texans

Saturday, 4:35 PM ET

What may come to you as a surprise in the AFC is the Houston Texans defeating the Oakland Raiders. With the number one defense in the NFL, and a below average Offense, why can’t they do it? Just last year, the Denver Broncos proved to the world that defense does win championships. An aging Peyton Manning, a Denver offense who finished in the bottom half of the league propelled themselves to a Superbowl Championship against the Carolina Panthers. With Oakland having to start Connor Cook in place of both Derek Carr, and Matt McGloin, the Texans defense is just waiting to feast off of the Quarterback dilemma in Oakland. The Texans have played the majority of the 2016-2017 season with Brock Osweiler under center and managed a playoff spot. I think we see Houston pulling off the Victory at home, and advancing to the next round.

NFL Wild Card
Odell Beckham Jr (Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports)

New York Giants at Green Bay Packers

Sunday, 4:40 PM ET

In the NFC wild card, we see the New York Giants taking on Aaron Rodgers and his Green Bay Packers. This game shouldn’t be so clear cut and I’ll tell you why. The New York Giants have continuously been the most underrated team in the NFL thus far. Earlier this season, the Giants handed the Dallas Cowboys, who some believe to be the best team in the league, two out of their three losses. A scary receiving core led by Odell Beckham Jr. will look to pounce on the second worst passing defense in the NFL. It’s going to be tough to go against the red-hot Aaron Rodgers coming into the playoffs. However, historically we have seen how scary this New York Giants team can be in the playoffs, especially going through Green Bay on their way to handing out losses to Tom Brady in the Superbowl on two separate occasions. I think this game will be a close one, but the Giants edge out a victory against a beaten up Green Bay secondary.

With that being said, grab some popcorn because we’re in for an interesting ride in this year’s NFL playoffs.


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