Originally posted on This Given Sunday  |  Last updated 1/15/13
It may seem a bit like dodging a pair of difficult questions, but a Patriots, Falcons Super Bowl makes too much sense to ignore. The simple justification for such a prediction is that those teams are fielding the best quarterbacks this weekend, but really, there's much more to it than that. While Tom Brady and Matt Ryan may be the best passers this weekend, their defenses will play critical roles in their success or failure on championship weekend. For the Falcons, Collin Kaepernick provides a second shot at defending a mobile quarterback. Against the Seahawks, the Falcons were able to hold Seattle to zero points in the first half, but they largely failed to slow down Russell Wilson later in the game. While Atlanta's defense didn't exactly do a great job against a mobile quarterback, the experience should translate well to this weekend's game against the 49ers. On the AFC side, the Patriots will be simply hoping to slow the Falcons down. With Tom Brady on the other side of the ball, New England's defenders know they'll be in a shootout. Joe Flacco makes mistakes from time to time, and capitalizing on those mistakes will likely determine whether the Patriots are off to another Super Bowl or not. Home field advantage will also play a major role this weekend, especially on the NFC side. The Falcons operate a high-octane offense that relies on players running crisp routes in the secondary. Playing in a dome will provide those receivers a perfect playing surface with no chance of weather impeding their play. This weekend provides a pair of very intriguing matchups, and it's possible (if not probable) that this writer's predictions will be completely off base, but the rational picks this weekend are New England and Atlanta. They have the best passers in a quarterback driven league, and they're playing at home. [follow]
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