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Redbirds, Cards playoff picks to click
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Sports reporter Mark Nesbitt (60-15) now only has a one game lead on sports editor Adam Krebs (59-16). Adam went 8-1 last week and correctly predicted the Badgers to knock off the Hawkeyes and the Packers to beat the Vikings. With the WIAA football playoffs kicking off the first round of playoffs, the race is tight.

Prairie du Chien (7-2) at Brodhead-Juda(7-2)

Mark: Brodhead-Juda is on a roll and enters the playoffs on a six game winning streak. Brodhead-Juda coach Jim Matthys said the Cardinals are certanily a different team than the one who lost to River Valley 28-14 in the season opener. The Cardinals will get a rematch against the Blackhawks.

Pick: Brodhead-Juda

Adam: The Cardinals are playing at their peak right now. When you have nine different kids score all nine touchdowns it says two things: 1) you have a ton of weapons and 2) you are not trying to run up the score. Sixty-one points, with 41 coming in the first 13 minutes, shows a team is rolling on all cylinders.

Pick: Cards

NG-Monticello (7-2) at River Valley (9-0)

Mark: The Glarner Knights have lost two of their last three games heading into the playoffs. River Valley is riding the momentum after beating Prairie du Chien 42-19 last week to win its first Southwest Wisconsin title since 1981. Ever since I saw River Valley scrimmage against Belleville-Albany before the season started, I thought they were an explosive team. Now they have proven it.

Pick: River Valley

Adam: NGM has had a good season, but River Valley is the real deal. It would be a great win for a Glarner Knight program that is looking to make it past the first round after losing to Brodhead-Juda last year. However, I see this as another one-and-done for NGM.

Pick: RV

Darlington (9-0) at Lancaster (5-4)

Mark: Lancaster has been a thorn in the side of the Redbirds the last two years ending their season in the playoffs. Darlington has played in the Level 3 playoffs four times in the last eight years. This is the year Darlington clears the hurdle that has been the Flying Arrows.

Pick: Darlington

Adam: Which Flying Arrows team will show up? The one that gave a flashy Prairie du Chien team its first loss of the season or the one that laid an egg against Platteville? Darlington rolled Platteville and has not laid up on any team this year. The tough part for the Redbirds will be playing on the road. It will be Darlington's biggest test yet.

Pick: Da 'Birds

Black Hawk (6-3) at Burlington Catholic Central (8-1)

Mark: The Warriors got a tough draw playing defending state champion Catholic Central. With the windy and rainy conditions expected tonight, Black Hawk will have to try to establish a running game. Black Hawk has had a balanced offense all year led by senior quarterback Michael Wolff. Catholic Central will stack the line, but the Warriors will need to make them pay.

Pick: Catholic Central

Adam: The Warriors have most definitely earned their right to play in the postseason. I just think the Hilltoppers are a premier program. I will be cheering for the Warriors, however.

Pick: Catholic Central

Pec-Argyle (5-4) at Necedah (7-2)

Mark: The Vikings must avoid the turnovers if they want to upset Necedah. Pecatonica-Argyle has the weapons in Jared Johnson and Charlie Rubio to upset the Cardinals. Necedah has a strong running game that will challenge the Vikings' defense. I'm going with the Cardinals.

Pick: Necedah

Adam: This not an impossible game for the Vikings to pull off an upset. In fact, I am picking them to do so. Necedah hasn't played the toughest opponents all year and I think that makes them liable.

Pick: Pec-Argyle

Green Bay (4-3) AT New York Jets (5-1)

Mark: I may learn a lesson picking against the Packers. The Jets' defense should be able to pressure Aaron Rodgers into a couple of interceptions. The Jets are a strong running team that will use play action for big plays. The Jets can't be as turnover prone as Brett Favre and the Vikings.

Pick: Jets

Adam: Rodgers finally got that signature win over former mentor and INT-artist Brett Favre Sunday night. The Jets have a better defense than Minnesota and are playing well right now. My pick is the one different from Mark.

Pick: Packers