NFL Playoffs: Wild Card Betting Picks
Seventeen wild and wacky weeks after the regular season started, the NFL standings are locked in and the postseason field has been whittled down to 12 teams. Eight of them will kick off the NFL playoffs in the wild card round in what promises to be an unpredictable weekend.
Before we jump into our NFL picks, big thanks to Bovada for providing the NFL odds below:
Indianapolis Colts at Houston Texas (-140)
By now, you’ve surely heard about a team entering the playoffs scorching hot and going on a run. This year, that team is the Colts. Amazingly, they’ve won nine of the last ten games. Andrew Luck is back to his old self and you need to absolutely ride this hot streak.
Less than a month ago, Indianapolis went into Houston and ended the Texas’ own hot streak of nine wins in a row. They should be able to replicate that success again.
Pick: Indianapolis (+120)
Over/under 42 points: Seattle Seahawks at Dallas Cowboys
An explosion of offense was the theme of the NFL regular season. However, playoff football is just different. The stakes are high every single play. The weather is colder. Bodies are beat up. Depth charts are on their second or third options.
That will certainly play a factor in this one. Plus, Dallas and Seattle can flat-out dominate on the defensive end — each rank top-10 in the least points allowed. Points will at a premium in this NFC clash.
Pick: Under 42 points
Los Angeles Chargers at Baltimore Ravens (-2.5)
These two teams met less than two weeks ago in Los Angeles, a matchup Baltimore dominated from start to finish. In that 22-10 win, the Ravens’ league-leading defense flustered Phillip Rivers into two interceptions and held Melvin Gordon to 41 yards rushing. We have a hard time imagining anything changing in the rematch, which will now be held in the brisk cold of Baltimore.
The Ravens’ transformation since Lamar Jackson took over at quarterback is suited for a deep playoff run. Its run-dominated attack can keep high-flying attacks like the Chargers or even Kansas City and New England off the field most the game. This also gives its defense valuable rest and the ability to go full speed when they are on the field. Not only should the Ravens defeat the Bolts, but an upset victory in the next round isn’t out of the question.
Pick: Baltimore (-2.5)
Philadelphia Eagles at Chicago Bears (-6)
There’s a fighting spirit within the city of Philadelphia that you just can’t write off. Just six weeks ago, the reigning champions were 4-6 and fresh off a 48-7 clobbering by New Orleans. Since then, the Eagles rolled off five wins in six games to miraculously sneak into the playoffs, with its backup quarterback no less.
Nick Foles embodies the cities never-say-die attitude — like Rocky Balboa, but only a real-life version. Once again, he’s revived Philadelphia season and we don’t know about you, but we’re not counting him out again. How could you after last year’s Super Bowl run and this comeback campaign? Chicago is a brutally tough matchup but Saint Nick will somehow, someway find a way to cover six points.
Pick: Philadelphia (+6)
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