Online Franchise Wildcard Weekend Preview

Posted October 23rd, 2009 at 12:18 am


The Pastapadre Madden 10 Online Franchise has reached the playoffs. This has been a really successful regular season and having the promise of a draft and some sort of free agency moving forward has made it much more sustainable than a regular online league. As mentioned in the previous article there will be some teams open however those won’t be filled until after completion of the playoffs. I will have a posting up come that time for anyone who is interested. Continue on for analysis of Wild Card Weekend.

BYES: Raiders (16-0, AFC #1 Seed), Jaguars (14-2, AFC #2 Seed), Cardinals (14-2, NFC #1 Seed), Saints (12-4, NFC #2 Seed)


The #5 seeded Bucs travel to face the #4 seeded Packers. Tampa won the week nine matchup by a resounding margin with a 42-10 final. The Packers turned the ball over five times in that game. Derrick Ward was able to rush for 159 yards and three TDs while Aaron Rodgers’ 5 INTs made the outcome inevitable. The Packers are only 3-4 since that game so they are not riding the momentum they would hope for going into the playoffs. On the other hand the Bucs were victorious in eight of their final 10 games.

Outside of the TB game Rodgers actually had a good season throwing for 3450 yards and 31 TDs. Green Bay won the weakest division in the franchise and still only outscored opponents by a total of nine over the course of the year. They may be in trouble handling Tampa who fought it out until the final week only to finish a game behind the Saints. Derrick Ward carried the Bucs scoring 15 times and rushing for 1261 yards and Josh Freeman performed admirably all year.

Line: Bucs -6.5


The #6 Seahawks go on the road to take on the #3 Eagles. Early in the season Philadelphia looked to be unstoppable however an ownership changed rocked their fortunes. They finished the year off going 5-4 in the last nine games. Despite the 11-5 record Seattle was actually outscored by 13 points over the course of the season which is a discouraging sign.

The Eagles made a lot of personnel changes this year which paid off in the regular season. Acquisitions such as Paul Posluszny solidified the defense while LeSean McCoy stepped in for Brian Westbrook after he was was traded away and rushed for 1153 yards and 13 TDs. Ray Rice chipped in well with 569 yards and 7 TDs. The Seahawks may not have the offensive firepower to keep up with the Donovan McNabb and the Eagles rushing attack.

Line: Eagles -4.5


The #6 Steelers head to the #3 Ravens. This inter-division rivalry will offer the third opportunity for Pittsburgh to come out victorious this season. The Ravens won both regular season affairs 20-18 and 45-21.

In those games it was the turnover battle and rushing attack that helped determine the winner. The Ravens did not turn the ball over in either game while the Steelers had had a combined four. Brian Westbrook rushed for over 100 yards in each game for Baltimore with three TDs while Willie Parker was limited to 28 and 57 yards and didn’t reach the end zone. It would be difficult to imagine fortunes turning for the Steelers here.

Line: Ravens -5.5


The #5 Chargers will face the #4 Jets and both of these teams have mixed up their rosters to make a run in the first year of the franchise. For San Diego the aerial attack combines Randy Moss and Reggie Wayne with Antonio Gates and Chris Chambers which is sure to put any defense on its heels. Philip Rivers took advantage having a good season with 29 TDs and 3588 yards. Darren Sproles added 1263 yards on the ground to make for great offensive balance. On defense Shawne Merriman terrorized opponents with a league leading 18 sacks.

The Jets got a ROY type season out of Mark Sanchez who threw for 3835 yards and 24 TDs. An acquisition that brought Michael Turner to town resulted in 16 TDs. Braylon Edwards led the team with nine TD receptions.

San Diego had the better point differential and had to deal with the unstoppable Raiders in their division. The Jets won the AFC East in easy fashion. The Chargers appear to be the more battle-tested and explosive team here and are the favorite.

Line: Chargers -5