New overtime rules should make playoffs interesting


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With Wild Card Weekend upon us, I figured it would be a good idea to take a look at the new overtime rules and how it will affect play.

The rule is essentially a combination of the college rule and the traditional NFL rule.

Basically, if the team that wins the coin toss scores a touchdown on their opening possession, they win. But if they score a field goal, the other team gets the ball with a chance to tie with a field goal or win the game with a touchdown.

If the team that wins the coin toss is forced to punt, the game will essentially be in sudden death, meaning that the first team to score will win.

To me, this rule seems very fair and should be extended to the regular season. I still believe that in the regular season, if there is a scoreless overtime the game should still end in a tie. But this playoff rule should make things exciting.

It adds some of the drama that the college overtime has, without the seemingly endless number of overtimes that can, and have, occurred in the college game. Here's to us seeing at least one OT game this postseason.

Wild Card Weekend Picks

Saturday

New Orleans at Seattle, 5:30 p.m. NBC

The Seahawks have one of the great home field advantages in the NFL, and they will definitely put that to use in this game. However, the Seahawks lack the defense and consistent offense to keep pace with the high-powered, veteran Saints.

Pick: Saints

N.Y. Jets at Indianapolis, 9 p.m. NBC

On paper, the Jets should be able to run the ball at will against the Colts defense. But in the last few weeks, the Colts run defense has pulled its usual reappearing act in time for the playoffs. Plus, the Jets haven't been as dominant running the ball as they were early in the season.

With the Colts having home-field advantage, their run defense getting better, their running game itself re-emerging, and Peyton Manning's excellent record against Rex Ryan defenses, I would have to give the nod her to Indy.

Pick: Colts

Sunday

Baltimore at Kansas City, 2 p.m. CBS

Arrowhead Stadium is one of the toughest places in the league to play if you're the road team. That in itself gives the Chiefs a big edge here. They also have the advantage of a more high-powered offense than the Ravens. Baltimore's offense is ranked 22nd overall, while Kansas City's is ranked 12th.

Defensively, you would think the Ravens are way better that the Chiefs, but while the Ravens were 10th in total defense, the Chiefs were right behind at 14th.

Normally, I would go with a veteran Ravens team to pull off a road win, but these Ravens aren't as dominant as I thought they would be at the beginning of the year, and the Chiefs have too many things going for them.

Pick: Chiefs

Green Bay at Philadelphia, 5:30 p.m. FOX

This game should be interesting, but also low-scoring. During this season, both of these offenses have shown the tendency to disappear, which makes me believe that this will be a battle between two defensive juggernauts.

The edge should go to the Eagles in this matchup, though. They not only have home field advantage, but they also have a huge advantage running the ball with LeSean McCoy and the improvisational skills that Michael Vick brings to the table.

Pick: Eagles

- Last week: 7-9; Overall: 150-106

- Kemp Callwood is the Daily News sports editor. His column appears regularly throughout the NFL season.

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