Chargers @ Patriots - what the pundits are saying

Pretty big game at the Razor on Sunday night. San Diego travel to New England to take on the 17-0 Patriots in the AFC Championship game. Let's find out what the pundits have to say.'s Peter King picks the Patriots in something of a blow out. His reasoning? Largely the Charger's injury list;

''Wrong place, wrong time for the Chargers. It's going to be about 18 degrees at kickoff, 40 degrees colder than what they practice in before they fly east. No Antonio Gates, unless he visits Lourdes on Saturday. Philip Rivers will try to play without practicing all week. LaDainianTomlinson will play, but how healthy and effective will he be? That's not a recipe for success against New England's changeup defenses.''

He picks New England 30, San Diego 13

Vinnie Iyer of the sporting news picks the Patriots and his overall theme, which makes sense to me anyway, is that the Chargers need a stack of elements to go their way, while the Patriots can afford some slippage and still prevail. He also alludes to the head coaching battle;

''In a defense vs. offense chess match in which Bill Belichick and Norv Turner are moving several talented pieces, it's hard not to go with the Pats' head man, especially since Turner may be restrained by his team's injury issues.''

His pick? Patriots 42, Chargers 17

Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today goes for New England. He focuses on the mental aspect of the game and says, interestingly;

''However, the Patriots thrive on playing with everything to lose. They are acutely aware of the stakes and have been for most of the season. That vision and focus is intense and set on one thing: a Super Bowl title. ''

His pick: Patriots 35, Chargers 20

Seven out of eight USA Today sports journalists pick the Patriots.
Six out of six (some hadn't picked yet) ESPN experts pick the Patriots.
Five out of five senior ESPN NFL writers pick the Patriots.

Of course, you just never know. That's the beauty of it, isn't it?

Enjoy the game



Anonymous said…
SD and NYG (ATS and SU). Check out my blog for my reasons...
Cormac said…
Dude...come on...
Anonymous said…
No really. If Rivers/Tomlinson/Gates are reasonably healthy, I'm taking SD. I've liked the Chargers to win it all since week 5. Mostly because of the good odds, but at this point I see them as the best team in football.

If they are hurt, it will get very very ugly. And I'm already going on record saying the Pats will beat the Packers by 30+ points if that's the SB matchup. Favre will throw about 43 INTs.