NFL Conference Championship Playoff Games This Week
KAZ’S FEARLESS FORECAST
MINNESOTA VIKINGS (14-3) over PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (14-3) 5:40 p.m. Sunday in Philadelphia (Fox)—Both teams should feel lucky to even be playing in this championship game. The Eagles were the recipients of a very subpar Atlanta offense and less than mediocre job by Falcons’ quarterback Matt Ryan. Minnesota received a huge gift on the final play of the game with New Orleans leading 24-23 when Saints’ safety Marcus Williams tried to strip the football from Vikings receiver Stefon Diggs instead of merely tackling him in bounds. Diggs skirted the weak effort by Williams and scored the winning touchdown, allowing the Vikes to advance to Sunday’s game. This game could go either way, with Minnesota favored by 3 points.
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (14-3) over JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS (12-6) 2:05 p.m. Sunday at Gillette Field in Foxborough, MA. (CBS))— The Jaguars should present Patriots quarterback Tom Brady some major problems with their fantastic pass rush without blitzing. Brady has a wealth of experience over Blake Bortles, but the Jags’ quarterback is much more mobile. New England also has a huge advantage with Head Coach Bill Belichick, but the Jaguars hold an advantage defensively. The Patriots are a nine-point favorite, but I’d take Jacksonville and the points if I were a bettor.