NFL Divisional Playoffs 2019: And then there were 8…
After a thrilling Wildcard weekend 8 teams remain in the hunt for the Superbowl. And if this weekend was any indication of what the NFL playoffs will be like, hold on to your hats…and wallets.
The lines for the NFL divisional round are up and we’ve got your early preview and picks for this upcoming weekend.
Indianapolis Colts vs Kansas City Chiefs
Saturday January 12, 4:35pm EST
As we discussed in last week’s Wildcard picks, the Indianapolis Colts since week 11 have been one of the best teams in the NFL by effeciency ratings. The Chiefs with their historically prolific offense have been the best team by that metric all season.
However…that historically good offense has just not been able to move the ball as well since the Kareem Hunt saga. And along with a historically good offense comes with one of the worst run defenses of all time by advanced metrics. Enter the Indianapolis Colts, who will bring with them to Arrowhead the best offensive line in football. There is a recipe for the Colts to keep Andrew Luck clean, move the ball at will and ultimately cover the number.
PICK: INDIANAPOLIS COLTS +6 (-110) on 888sport.com
Dallas Cowboys vs Los Angeles Rams
Saturday January 12, 8:15pm EST
Did the early Superbowl favorite Los Angeles Rams peak too early?
It feels like the case as they did not cover a single spread in their last 5 regular season games against an opponent with a winning record. Now with a weeks rest to get Todd Gurley healthy they host the Dallas Cowboys on Saturday night.
When the Cowboys have the ball my best guess is that the Rams shutdown corner Aqib Talib will shadow Amari Cooper while they load the box to stop the run.
When the Rams have the ball, all the motion and trickery, will look to be neutralized by the Cowboys defense whose strength is their team speed. I can see points hard to come by in this one.
PICK: UNDER 49.5 (-110) on SportsInteraction
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Los Angeles Chargers vs New England Patriots
Sunday January 13, 1:05pm EST
Of all the NFL scores this past weekend, the Chargers win in Baltimore was probably the most surprising and the least surprising. The defense completely took Lamar Jackson out of his comfort zone by using tactics no one expected. They put elite edge pass rusher Joey Bosa, on the interior at times, and used 6 defensive backs again a run oriented scheme just to have as much speed on the field as possible.
But most crucially, Melvin Ingram completely wrecked the game for the Ravens offense and their rookie QB.
But can they do this in Foxboro against Belichek and Brady. The line of +4.5 is begging us to take the points. I’m gonna zig while everyone else zags. It will be a close game, but the Pats will be up 6, Philip Rivers will have the ball with 3 minutes left and the Pats will advance on some flukey play and cover.
PICK: PATRIOTS -4.5 (-110) on BET365
Philadelphia Eagles vs New Orleans Saints
Sunday January 13, 4:40pm EST
Do you want to bet against Nick Foles and the Eagles at this point? Because I sure don’t. And as far as NFL Odds go I’ve already seen this line yoyo between 8 and 10 points in less than 12 hours, which makes me want no part of it.
However, I think I know the winning play in this one. Drew Brees and the Saints have gone over in their last 5 home playoff games. And the Saints offense will be able to take advantage of a less than great Eagles defense in a way that the Bears simply couldn’t. The Saints will score on Sunday and the Eagles will be drawn into a shootout, and I think they keep it relatively close…because let’s face, they won’t die.
PICK: OVER 50.5 (-110) on William Hill
you can follow me on twitter @zahir_gilani
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