The NFL regular season is finally behind us, and it is time to gear up for Wild Card Weekend. With only four games on the slate, I’ll go through all four games and talk about my favorite bet on each game happening this weekend.
Buffalo Bills at Houston Texans
The Bills are three-point underdogs on the road this week, and they are one of the most publicly backed teams of the week if you just simply look at the coverage in the media. The Texans were able to rest some of their best players last week in a loss to the Titans, which should really help them coming into this game.
One player that may need a bit more time is Will Fuller, who is not ruled out yet, but it looks like he will not play in this game. Fuller’s status is really important here, so keep up on this news throughout the week.
I like the home team here by just three points due to the lack of firepower from the Bills offense. I think that this should be a low-scoring game like the 44-point total suggests, but I think that playing on the road in a dome is not ideal for this Bills roster.
I expect Deshaun Watson and company to find success on a few drives, and that will be enough to win this game by a touchdown.
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Tennessee Titans at New England Patriots
The Titans are five-point road underdogs, and this is likely the most interesting game of the weekend from a betting perspective. The Patriots have not looked great recently, especially last week in a must-win game against Miami, and the Titans are one of the hottest teams in the league since making a midseason change at quarterback.
I like the Patriots -5 here, but I’ll actually side with the over 44.5 in this game. The Titans’ defense is not really scary to me, and I think that the Patriots come out with something to prove offensively after a massive letdown a week ago.
The Titans offense has created too many big plays to ignore, so I do expect them to hang around with a few big plays for scores via guys like Derrick Henry and AJ Brown.
Minnesota Vikings at New Orleans Saints
This is a really tough game to pick simply due to an eight-point spread that just feels uncomfortable in a playoff game. The Saints are playing like one of the best teams in football right now, and the Vikings are just now getting fully healthy from what we can see on the outside.
I like the over 49 in this spot due to both teams just having more raw talent on the offensive side of the ball than they do on defense at this point in time.
However, I’ll take the Saints -8 as my pick here. Michael Thomas gets one of the best matchups in football, and I think that we could see Kirk Cousins struggle again on a big stage. The Vikings have two clear top options at receiver, and we have seen the Saints implement a good strategy against this kind of offense in the past.
They have an elite cover corner in Marshon Lattimore, who takes one guy one-on-one, and then they bracket cover the other guy with a safety, so neither receiver has the advantage in that situation.
Seattle Seahawks at Philadelphia Eagles
These two teams are really strange to me because they just don’t feel like playoff teams from a roster standpoint, even though the Seahawks are clearly playing like one and have been for the entire season. Seattle is a 1.5-point road favorite in a hostile environment, which is really strange come playoff time.
I still like Seattle here simply because of the matchups on the outside. The Eagles cannot cover speed on the outside, and Seattle’s passing game is designed to throw to two receivers with elite speed.
I think that the Eagles will have a really tough time in the secondary, and they lack the offensive firepower to keep up with Seattle for four quarters.