I have given it some thought this week and I am not overwhelmingly sure which team I think will win. I know which team I want to lose. As a NY Giants fan I am always in the “Patriots Suck” camp. Since my team is not in this game (nor where they even close to a playoff team this year) I fall back on past glory for them, and the memory of beating the Patriots in two fairly recent Super Bowls warms my heart. Image if Brady had 5 Super Bowl wins to his title? No way he is even in my top 10 all time QBs. That sounds harsh as top ten all time is something. My logic is this: today I go Rodgers, P. Manning (only because of age is he not #1), Luck, Brees, then Brady. That keeps him from being in the Elway, Marino, Unitas, Montana, etc conversation.
Not a huge fan of the Seahawks but what they do have, is a top self defense. Everything you want in a defense pass rush, sure tackling, discipline, and quality secondary play. Their offense is light in the ability to comeback. I know they did a pretty good job of coming back against the Packers two weeks ago, but really did the offense drive that? They are built to maintain a lead and take advantage of mistakes the other team makes. Wilson is very effective at assessing in game conditions. Hard to tell really what is Wilson and what should be credited to Pete Carroll.
Speaking of coaches. I think right now Bill Belichick is on a hot streak of great coaching decisions. The last two playoff games the Patriots won were wonderfully designed. Coach Belichick always seems to call plays that give his guys the best chance to control the outcome. He alone is enough to get the Pats into the winners circle. I completely dismiss the defaulted ball issue as anything other than a distraction for this game.
Yes, I think both teams should use the same league approved balls. Same equipment for both teams similar to NASCAR and let the best team win. I fully believe every superstar that has spoken in the press the last week or so about the advantages a defaulted ball may present. To add, I also believe the Patriots have used deflated balls often this season and others. But none of that would have kept them from winning against the Colts. They were the better team with or without that advantage. They were the best team in the AFC hands down. Unless your a Packer fan there is no argument that the best two teams are in this weekends game.
Actual predication. Pats 31 Hawks 24. Not a highly competitive game. I believe the Patriots will have the lead at the half and control the outcome while everyone sits at home or elsewhere running scenarios through their heads that will allow the Seahawks to pull the possible comeback out. If I am wrong I will be gladly wrong as I and all Giants fans always hope the Cowboys and Patriots lose.
MVP note. I expect a strong passing day from the Patriots and even if Brady throws for 350 yards a 3 TDs he will not win the award based on the default gate issue. Welcome to the MVP Party Gronk.