Archive for February, 2011|Monthly archive page

Steelers 27 Packers 24

I know I’m going to upset some of my Packer brethren¬†with this prediction but I just feel like the Steelers are the better team. Here’s why…

First Rashard Mendenhall. I see him having a big game. If he rushes for over 100 yards it’s game over. Packers must stop him to have a shot. The more Mendenhall is running, the less time you will see the Packer offense on the field. Now Pouncey’s (C) injury on the Steeler offensive line could be a factor. As Packer fans know, their defense will bring a blitz from anywhere on the field. One of the center’s jobs at the line is to call out line checks and blitz pickups. Losing Pouncey is huge but I still don’t think the Pack will stop them from moving the ball.

Pittsburgh D. If you look back at the season and even the course of his career, the games where Aaron Rodgers has struggled (which is very few) is when he’s faced a lot of pressure. He tends to hold the ball a little too long in these situations. I see the Steelers getting quite a bit of pressure on him with their various packages and alignments. Their secondary is good, but not great. I do think it’s good enough that the Steelers are comfortable with blitzing at any time.

It’s going to be close. I see it being a great game. Very evenly matched. Early on, I’m going to be looking at how the Packer offensive line handles the Steelers defensive line. If they are handling them early on and Rodgers has time to throw, then the Packers have a great chance.

My NFC Championship prediction was a 20-14 victory for Green Bay. They won 21-14. Sometimes I hit and sometimes I’m totally wrong. I know my Packer friends are hoping it’s the latter.


Quick review: H&R Block At Home Tax Software

This is a preliminary review of H&R Block’s tax software (deluxe edition).

Let me start out by saying I’ve been a TurboTax user for 10+ years and intended to use them again for my tax preparation this year. Then a couple weeks ago, Amazon ran a one day special for the H&R Block At Home software (formerly known as TaxCut) for less than half of the cost of TurboTax Deluxe version. After reading that H&R Block’s software will import last year’s data even from TurboTax, I decided to try out H&R Block for the first time and save a little money in the process.

Since I’ve used TurboTax for so long, I’ve become accustomed to how they lay out the questionnaire and information finding in their software. They have tweaked it over the years but it’s generally remained the same. H&R’s questionnaire and flow are very similar to TurboTax. All of our personal information was indeed ported over from last years tax return that I had saved on my laptop so that was a timesaver. Employer info, interest income, and mortgage interest were all imported as well. All I had to do was update the amounts and make any necessary changes.

I live in an income tax state so the version I purchased included a state return. After the federal questionnaire, H&R Block took me to the state portion where all I had to do was confirm which state to download. Then it ported over all the information I had entered for the federal return and took me through each section for accuracy and applicability.

I decided to test out H&R Block At Home software support when I had a question about where to enter an IRA contribution. I went to the website and clicked on chat support. The support representative took my question, had me hold for a while and came back with an answer. He was professional but it did take a while to get an answer.

So I’ve got my returns all completed but due to Congress passing new tax laws so late in the year, electronic returns can not be submitted until the software is updated. I’ve read of a target date of Feb 14 so I am pretty much on hold right now. There is a feature built in to the software to alert you when an update is ready for download.

I’ll follow up on this review once I’m able to e-file. For now though, I have no issues with recommending H&R Block At Home for tax preparation. There are various versions available for both purchase (CD Rom) and download depending on complex your tax situation is.


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