Who else had a big Madden MAYhem Thursday night? Not that I’m bragging but……the Chiefs covered the 9.5 against the Raiders and the Falcons + 7.5 pulled through (with a bit of sweat) against the Saints. Additionally, both games went Over which made me 4-0 on the night. At the risk of jinxing myself for Saturday’s games, I hope you read my preview and made some dough. Speaking of Saturday’s games, let’s get to the previews.
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Jacksonville Jaguars @ Indianapolis Colts
Line: Colts -7
Saturday 5pm PST
Our first game of the week crowns the AFC South Champion and advances another team into the Madden MAYhem Elite 8. Phillip Rivers had a successful debut upsetting the Titans, 24-17. In true Rivers fashion, he tossed a couple of interceptions but also threw for 389 yards and a TD.
The Colts offense had to rely on gaining yardage through the air as their running game was utterly ineffective. Marlon Mack ran for 44 yards on 15 carries while Nyheim Hines could only muster 16 yards on 10 carries. In order for the Colts to keep advancing it appears they’ll have to rely on Rivers and a much-improved defense.
One of the shockers of the first round was the Jacksonville Jaguars knocking off the Houston Texans, 27-13. This matchup was all about the Jacksonville defense completely shutting down DeShaun Watson and the DeAndre Hopkins-less Texans. Watson only threw for 188 yards with one TD and one INT. If this defense can show up again and limit the Colts passing game while forcing a couple turnovers, they’ll have a chance to win.
In addition to a superb defense outing, Leonard Fournette ran for 131 yards on 19 carries and crossed the goal line once. With Gardner Minshew and the passing game struggling, the Jags will need to ride the big fella. Jacksonville will look to feed Fournette the rock, control the clock, and keep the Colts offense on the sideline.
The Colts defense was impressive in the opener and I expect them to slow down Jacksonville and limit Fournette’s effectiveness. Offensively, Rivers and the passing game will have another solid outing and the Colts will coast. I’ll lay the touchdown. Give me the Colts and give me the Under here too.
Seattle Seahawks @ San Francisco 49ers
Line: 49ers -5.5
Thursday 7pm PST
One of the most dominating performances of the first round saw the 49ers demolish the Cardinals in the snow (really?) in San Francisco, 39-18. Jimmy G re-found the forward pass and threw for 349 yards and 3 TD’s with 1 INT. In addition to the success through the air, Raheem Mostert ran for 123 yards on 26 carries and a touchdown. We all know the 49ers have a dominant defense, but if they can get this kind of production from the offense, this team may be unstoppable.
On the other hand, the Seahawks outdueled the Los Angeles Rams 25-22 in a close matchup in Seattle. Russell Wilson threw for 224 yards and a couple TD’s but didn’t quite ball-out like we know he can. The Rams defense is solid but the 49ers D is even better. Russ might need a monster game in order for the Seahawks to topple San Fran.
His Top target was 2nd year man, DK Metcalf, who went for 112 yards and a TD. Newly acquired tight end, Greg Olson, also found the end zone in his first game as a Seahawk. In the backfield, Chris Carson ran for 74 yards and a TD and Russell Wilson got another 60 yards on the ground. It will be interesting to see how much success the Seahawk offense can have against the stout 49ers defense.
The 49ers looked as good as any team in Madden MAYhem and are a favorite to win this whole freaking thing. However, this spread seems a bit high. I expect Russell Wilson to have a big game and at least keep it close. 49ers win by a field goal but the Seahawks cover. I’ll go with the Under as well.