The NFL Playoffs start this week, and this year there are six Wild Card Round games as opposed to just four. There are several intriguing matchups set to take place, including a couple of games featuring division rivals.
The NFL Playoffs are always hard to predict, but this article will give a quick preview of each game, followed by a betting pick as well.
Indianapolis Colts at Buffalo Bills (-6.5)
The 13-3 Buffalo Bills host the 11-5 Indianapolis Colts in the first playoff game set to take place on Saturday afternoon. Buffalo is one of the best offensive teams in the league, while the Colts made the playoffs thanks to their defense.
Indianapolis will need to run the ball well in this game, and that means feeding rooking running back Jonathan Taylor. The Bills give up some points, but the Colts don’t want this to turn into a shootout.
Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen has thrown for over 4,500 yards this season, and that offense is explosive. The Bills are one of the hottest teams in the league, and they won’t be slowed down in this game.
Take the Buffalo Bills -6.5 over the Indianapolis Colts.
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Los Angeles Rams at Seattle Seahawks (-3.5)
NFC West Division rivals square off in the second game on Saturday as the Seattle Seahawks host the Los Angeles Rams. These two teams split their two regular-season meetings, but the Seahawks won the NFC West this season.
The Rams are dealing with some injury concerns, including quarterback Jared Goff. Goff is expected to play, but Los Angeles has the best defense in the league, and that unit will need to play well.
Seattle has been getting great play from their defense of late, but the offense has struggled. Quarterback Russell Wilson and wide receiver DK Metcalf will need to be great in this game.
Don’t expect a ton of points in this one, and that will make it a close game. Take the 3.5-points and the Rams on Saturday, as a field goal likely determines the outcome.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-8.5) at Washington Football Team
The final game on Saturday night will feature the Tampa Bay Buccaneers as a large favorite against the NFC East champion, Washington Football Team. Washington was able to win the lousy division this season, but they have their work cut out for them.
Tampa Bay features an explosive offense, led by Tom Brady. The Bucs should have no trouble scoring in this game, but they also have a dominant defensive line.
Washington has been a great defensive team this season as well, but they will face a big test in this game. Injuries at the quarterback position have affected the offense all season.
This game should not be close. Take the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-8.5) over the Washington Football Team.
Baltimore Ravens (-3.5) at Tennessee Titans
On Sunday, the Tennessee Titans will host the Baltimore Ravens in a rematch of last year’s Divisional Round matchup. Tennessee won a season ago, but the home team is slight underdogs against the surging Ravens.
Baltimore has now won five straight games, and they are rushing for nearly 200 yards per game. The defense remains strong for the Ravens, and this team looks poised to make a run.
Tennessee running back Derrick Henry rushed for over 2,000 yards this season, and he will be a huge key in this game. The Titans want to score some points, but that won’t be easy against the Ravens.
Look for the Ravens to get revenge in this game as they beat the Titans and cover the spread.
Chicago Bears at New Orleans Saints (-10)
The 12-4 New Orleans Saints will host the 8-8 Chicago Bears on Sunday afternoon in a rematch of a regular-season game. The Saints picked up a three-point win in that game, but both teams are much different this time around.
The Bears have been getting great production from running back David Montgomery, but that’s about it on offense. The defense has played well, but they will be without linebacker Roquan Smith.
New Orleans is also dealing with several injuries on offense, but running back Alvin Kamara is expected back. Kamara had six rushing touchdowns in his previous game.
This has all the makings of a blowout, and this one won’t go well for the Bears. Take the New Orleans Saints (-10) over the Chicago Bears.
Cleveland Browns at Pittsburgh Steelers (-6)
AFC North rivals will wrap up the first weekend of NFL Playoff action when the Pittsburgh Steelers host the Cleveland Browns. These two teams just met in Week 17, and it was the Browns that won that game.
Cleveland is dealing with COVID-19 concerns, and they will also be without Olivier Vernon. The Browns will need to run the football well, but Pittsburgh is a great defensive team.
Pittsburgh has 56 sacks as a team this season, and that defense will look to take over this game. The Steelers do struggle to run the football, but quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has played well.
Look for the Steelers to take control in this rivalry game. Bet the Steelers (-6) over the Cleveland Browns.