2003 Football Playoffs 2003 Football Playoffs

  Posted: Thursday January 02, 2003 11:32 AM senior producer B. Duane Cross forecasts the NFL games.
(All times Eastern)
Wild-Card Weekend
Sat. 4:30 p.m. | ABC
Indianapolis (10-6) at N.Y. Jets (9-7)
Last meeting: Dec. 23, 2001: Jets 29, Colts 28 at Indianapolis -- New York QB Vinny Testaverde throws a 6-yard TD pass to TE Anthony Becht with 58 seconds remaining.
Last meeting at Meadowlands: Sept. 9, 2001: Colts 45, Jets 24 -- Colts RB Edgerrin James rushes for 135 yards and 2 TDs; Colts QB Peyton Manning tosses 2 TD passes.
Last postseason meeting: Jan. 12, 1969: Jets 16, Baltimore Colts 7 at Miami (Super Bowl III) -- Joe Namath leads AFL's Jets to "guaranteed" victory.
What you need to know: Manning is 5-3 vs. the Jets. ... In five games vs. New York, James has 120 rushes for 500 yards (4.2 avg.), three TDs. ... In the last meeting vs. Jets, Marvin Harrison caught 12 passes for 127 yards, one TD. ... New York QB Chad Pennington had a 68.9 completion percentage, sixth-best in NFL history, and led the league with seven 100.0-plus passer rating games. ... In 14 career games vs. Colts, Curtis Martin has rushed for 1,540 yards (110.0 yards per game), seven TDs. ... In the past four games vs. Indianapolis, Wayne Chrebet has 25 catches for 355 yards (88.8 per game), one TD. ... Colts ranked No. 7 in kickoff coverage (20.5 avg.); Jets KR Chad Morton ranked second in the AFC with a 26.0 avg.
Jets 31, Colts 20

Sat. 8 p.m. | ABC
Atlanta (9-6-1) at Green Bay (12-5)
Last meeting: Sept. 8, 2002: Falcons 34, Packers 37 (OT) -- Green Bay's Ryan Longwell kicks a 34-yard, game-winner at Lambeau. Packers RB Ahman Green rushes for 155 yards; QB Brett Favre throws for 284 yards, two TDs.
Last postseason meeting: Dec. 31, 1995: Falcons 20, Packers 37 at Green Bay (NFC Wild Card) -- Green Bay RB Edgar Bennett rushes for a club postseason record 108 yards (since broken), one TD; Favre throws three TD passes.
What you need to know: Falcons QB Michael Vick ranks fourth in the NFC with a 1.9 interception percentage (421 attempts, 8 INTs). ... Atlanta RB Warrick Dunn averages 4.2 yards per carry (314 yards, 75 carries) in six games at Lambeau. ... Falcons DE Patrick Kerney finished with 10 1/2 sacks, and is the first Atlanta player with consecutive 10-sack seasons (12.0 in 2001). ... Favre has 29 career postseason TD passes; needs two to pass Terry Bradshaw (30) for third place, four to eclipse Dan Marino (32) for second all time. ... Green averages 90 rushing yards (4.9 yards per carry) in two playoff games. ... Packers DE Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila led the team with 12.0 sacks; became the third player in franchise history with consecutive seasons of at least 12.0.
Packers 20, Falcons 16

Sun. 1 p.m. | CBS
Cleveland (9-7) at Pittsburgh (10-5-1)
Last meeting: Dec. 2, 2002: Steelers 23, Browns 20 at Cleveland -- Steelers QB Tommy Maddox throws two TD passes; RB Amos Zereoue rushes for then-career high 111 yards.
Last meeting at Heinz Field: Sept. 29, 2002: Steelers 16, Browns 13 (OT) -- Maddox enters in the fourth quarter and completes 11 of 13 passes for 122 yards, one TD; Steelers' Todd Peterson kicks the game-winning FG.
Last postseason meeting: Jan. 7, 1995: Browns 9, Steelers 29 at Pittsburgh (AFC Divisional) -- Pittsburgh scores on its first three drives to build a 17-0 lead. Steelers rush for 238 yards and amass 424 yards on offense.
What you need to know: Under head coach Butch Davis, Cleveland is 14-5 when scoring 20 or more points. ... Browns QB Kelly Holcomb makes his first career playoff start. In two games as a starter, Holcomb is 1-1, completing 44 of 69 passes for 528 yards, five TDs (111.0 passer rating). ... Since 1985, the only Browns RB to out-rush rookie William Green (887 yards) is Leroy Hoard (890) in 1994. ... Pittsburgh Pro Bowl WR Hines Ward and WR Plaxico Burress surpassed their own team record for most catches by Steelers duo (190). ... Ward ranked second in the AFC in receiving yards (1,329); Burress ranked third (1,325). ... Pittsburgh Pro Bowl LB Joey Porter and LB Clark Haggans tied for the team lead in sacks (9.0) -- no other AFC LB had more than 8.0.
Steelers 24, Browns 14

Sun. 4:30 p.m. | FOX
N.Y. Giants (10-6) at San Francisco (10-6)
Last meeting: Sept. 5, 2002: 49ers 16, Giants 13 at the Meadowlands -- San Francisco WR Terrell Owens makes a 33-yard catch-and-run to set up Jose Cortez's 36-yard FG with 6 seconds remaining.
Last meeting at 3Com: Nov. 30, 1998: 49ers 31, Giants 7 -- San Francisco RB Garrison Hearst runs for 166 yards, one TD; Owens has five receptions for 140 yards, one TD.
Last postseason meeting: Jan. 15, 1994: 49ers 44, Giants 3 at San Francisco (NFC Divisional) -- Niners RB Ricky Watters establishes an NFL single-game playoff record with five rushing TDs. The defense holds New York to 41 rushing yards.
What you need to know: Giants QB Kerry Collins passed for 342 yards vs. S.F. in Week 1; has three 300-yard passing games vs. 49ers, his most vs. any club. ... New York WR Amani Toomer set the franchise record with 82 receptions, 1,343 yards receiving; had nine catches for 134 yards in last meeting vs. S.F. ... Giants DE Michael Strahan seeks a sack in fifth consecutive playoff game; has 5 1/2 sacks in the past four postseason contests. ... Niners QB Jeff Garcia led the NFL with a 107.6 third-down passer rating, including 13 TDs, 1 INT. ... Owens had three 150-yard receiving games; averages 92.9 yards per game, second-most in the NFL. ... S.F. DE Andre Carter had a career-high 12 1/2 sacks; led the team for second consecutive season.
Giants 28, 49ers 16

Last week: 11-5. Overall: 147-109.

Related information
Dr. Z's NFL Power Rankings: Final analysis
Dr. Z Forecast's NFL Wild-Card Weekend Glance
Statitudes: NFL Wild-Card Preview -- By The Numbers
Head2Head: The postseason's impact player
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