NFL playoff capsules
Falcons (11-5) at Cardinals (9-7) 3:30 p.m. today TV: NBC6 Line: Falcons by 2 Falcons: Have shown toughness down stretch, winning four of past six road games. QB Matt Ryan hasn't played like a rookie, and he'll find room to operate against this d...
Falcons (11-5) at Cardinals (9-7)
3:30 p.m. today
Line: Falcons by 2
Falcons: Have shown toughness down stretch, winning four of past six road games. QB Matt Ryan hasn't played like a rookie, and he'll find room to operate against this defense. Falcons' Michael Turner is 2nd in NFL with 17 rushing TDs.
Cardinals: Season-ending home win over Seahawks stopped late-season skid, but trend is heading wrong way -- four losses in past six games. This is their first home playoff game since 1947, when they were the Chicago Cardinals. After losing starting job, Cardinals veteran Edgerrin James may get chance to use his playoff experience after rushing for 100 yards last week.
Prediction: Falcons 27, Cardinals 21
Colts (12-4) at Chargers (8-8)
7 p.m. today
Line: Colts by 1-1/2
Colts: Nine-game winning streak includes 23-20 win at San Diego on Nov. 23, adding to Colts' challenge -- winning twice at same road site. With Peyton Manning leading the way, no team is playing better. TE Dallas Clark is a huge weapon for the Colts with 77 catches, 6 TDs.
Chargers: This team of unfulfilled potential gets chance to show its stuff with a home playoff game, thanks to four straight wins to end season. Still, defense has allowed at least 21 points in five of past six games. Chargers need big game from LaDainian Tomlinson (3.8 avg., 11 TDs).
Prediction: Colts 30, Chargers 24.
Ravens (11-5) at Dolphins (11-5)
Line: Ravens by 3-1/2
Ravens: A 27-13 victory in Miami in October gives them confidence they can win here, but it's the first postseason start for rookie QB Joe Flacco. No. 2-ranked defense (led by safety Ed Reed's league-leading 9 INTs) will be key, as usual. Flacco is solid for a rookie, but has only 14 TDs. vs. 12 INTs.
Dolphins: Five-game win streak and home field gives Dolphins the edge. They'll need better offensive showing than they got vs. Baltimore the first time around. Dolphins' Chad Pennington is NFL's No. 2-rated passer with 19 TDs vs. 7 INTs.
Prediction: Dolphins 20, Ravens 17.
Eagles (9-6-1) at Vikings (10-6)
3:30 p.m. Sunday
TV: Fox 21
Line: Eagles by 3
Eagles: Enter playoffs with four wins in past five games, allowing only 12 points per game in that stretch. Confidence and Donovan McNabb's playoff experience (7-5 as postseason starter) give them edge. Eagles' Brian Westbrook has accounted for 1,338 yards from scrimmage and total of 14 TDs.
Vikings: Will have to take advantage of tough running game, led by NFL's leading rusher Adrian Peterson (1,760 yards,4.8 avg, 10 TDs). Passing may be too risky, though Vikings QB Tarvaris Jackson -- making playoff debut -- has 8 TDs vs.1 INT in past four games.
Prediction: Eagles 23, Vikings 17.