I’ll take Atlanta over Green Bay any day.
As fantasy critics rightfully claim, quality individual statistics don’t always translate to team-wide success. This isn’t the case with the Falcons.
Matt Ryan was the second-string QB behind Philip Rivers on my fantasy team, but he put up starter-caliber numbers, throwing for multiple touchdowns in nine of 16 regular season games and posting career highs in every category QBs care about. Roddy White was my best wide receiver. Together, they’re magic. While two players don’t make up an entire football team, they’re still too much for the Packers secondary, which dominated Eli Manning and Jay Cutler during the final two games of the regular season but has fared poorly against teams with high-quality wideouts. The game might be close initially, but if Falcons’ running back Michael Turner shows up and forces Green Bay to focus on stopping the run, the Falcons QB/WR duo will be too much for the Packers to handle.
The Packers may have one of the best quarterbacks in the game in Aaron Rodgers, but they lack the depth of the Falcons, they’re playing on relatively tired legs after upsetting the Eagles last week, and they’re playing on the road. They would win if the NFC playoffs were a movie about a group of likeable underdogs with everything going against them (See: Little Giants). But it isn’t.
Prediction: Falcons over Packers, 28-17