The wild card weekend turned into a mini super bowl for Jets fans like myself. With both the Bills and the Patriots losing in embarrassing fashion. The Bills and Texans game was a masterclass in shitty coaching from both sides. Not only did the Bills take a page out of the Jets playbook and blow a 16-0 2nd half lead but the end of the game decision making was something out of a comedy. Then you have the Patriots whose offense gave up as many touchdowns as they scored. When the Titans got that pick six it very well could have been the most fun I’ve had watching football all season. Now let’s make some Saturday divisional picks.
Minn @ SF (-7)
This game is one of 3 this weekend where the home teams are favored by a touchdown or more. Despite being touchdown favorites I feel the 49ers are still being slightly over looked. Over half the bets being placed so far have come in on Minnesota, I guess people expect them to replicate what they did against the Saints. The Saints and Sean Payton did a poor job of attacking Xavier Rhodes but I don’t think the 49ers will be as kind to the Vikings. While he played good last week I still can’t buy into the Kirk Cousins hype and I think last week was an anomaly. Historically he has struggled against top end defenses and that’s exactly what the 49ers have. Adam Thielen has been banged up all year and had to get stitches on his ankle just this past week. I think this is one where if the 49ers can get up by a score or two early the Vikings won’t be able to come back. I mean just last week Stefon Diggs was trying to fight Kirk Cousins while they were winning, can you imagine if they start to lose and Diggs isn’t getting the ball? The 49ers have been the best team in the NFC all season and I expect them to win here and cover. Pick: SF -7
Tenn @ BAL (-9.5)
I am very excited to see this game especially after what Tennessee was able to do to the Patriots last week. Derrick Henry has been a man amongst boys basically his entire life and a workhorse running back is the exact thing you need come playoff time. Despite their improvements over the course of the season Baltimore’s defense is still not great against the run. I expect them to load the box and dare Ryan Tannehill to beat them. A matchup to look for is AJ Brown against these Raven corners. Both Marcus Peters and Marlon Humphreys have played incredible this year. AJ Brown, since Tannehill was named starter, has had 4 110+ yard games. On the other side of the ball of course the focus will be slowing down this Ravens offense. If a defense has held Baltimore below 24 this season it has been considered a success. The only reason I’m not going Ravens here is because I believe the Titans have enough back end speed to slow down Jackson and this offense. I think the best bet in this game is the under. Last week we saw every wild card game go under and it’s a trend that very well may continue. This is a game where it’s going to be a lot of running the football and the clock should be running most of the game. I think because of this it stays under 47.5. Pick: Under 47.5