With the NFL Divisional Round Playoffs right around the corner us at Not the Worst Blog want to do something new. We are posting our NFL playoff picks. For those curious, we are using the DraftKings Sportsbook spreads as well as the point totals. So without further ado here’s how we see this weekend unfolding:
Colts @ Chiefs (-5.5) O/U 57.5
JP: If you like scoring then this is the game for you. As we know the Chiefs had the most prolific offense in the league scoring 35.3 points per game and putting up over 6800 yards leading the league in both as first year wonder kid Patrick Mahomes tossed 50 TDs. While the offense is incredible their defense doesn’t inspire much confidence, they have some guys up front such as Chris Jones, Dee Ford, and Justin Houston who have the ability to make life difficult for offenses but this Colts O Line is special. Andrew Luck was only sacked 18 times all year, and Frank Reich might be the coach of the year. The Colts come in winning 10 of their last 11 and have that possible “team of destiny” feeling. I do think the Chiefs will pull this one out in the end but I’ll take the Colts +5.5 and give me the over.
JP’s pick: Kansas City Chiefs 41 – Indianapolis Colts 38
MW: A game that should tickle the fancy of people who infatuated with scoring. We have Patrick Mahomes who led the NFL in TD passes against the caveman Andrew Luck who is finally healthy after two years. This game is guaranteed to be a shootout and it might come down to the team who has the ball in the final minutes winning the game. Both defenses are going to have huge issue. The Colts have to worry about Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill all game and for the Chiefs they will have to cover TY Hilton, Eric Ebron and Marlon Mack who is having the best season of his career thus far. I believe the Chiefs might pull away at some point in this game and in the long run and cover the 5.5 point spread. There is also no doubt in my mind that this game is going to hit the over. Both of these teams have potential to put up forty plus on the scoreboard but I don’t see that happening. So Chiefs to cover and give me the over.
MW’s Pick: Kansas City Chiefs 38 – Indianapolis Colts 31
Cowboys @ Rams (-7.5) O/U 50
JP: This might be my personal favorite matchup this weekend. Sean McVays high-powered Rams against the stingy Dallas defense. The Rams up until Week 14 seemed destined to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl, then they got shut down by the Bears, then lost to the Eagles. It’s easy to forget that as good as this Rams team has been the last two years they have proven nothing. At times this season I wondered if they were too full of themselves for a team that hasn’t even won a playoff game. There is no doubt about what they’re capable of but Goff has looked hesitant while Gurleys been banged up the last few weeks of the season. On the other side Dallas is coming of a huge home win against the Seahawks, and seems to hit their stride offensively in the second half when they most needed too. I have a lot of confidence in the Cowboys being able to run on this LA defense and expose a problem the Rams have had all year with the 23rd ranked rush defense. If Dallas does this they can limit the Rams opportunities and keep the score down. I think the Rams get over the hump but 7.5 is way too many points in my mind against this Dallas defense. Give me Dallas +7.5 and the under.
JP’s Pick: Los Angeles Rams 27 – Dallas Cowboys 21
MW: I mean me being a Giants fan, I am going to try my best to put my Dallas hatred to the side and call this fairly. The Rams were the heavy favorite coming out of the NFC by a lot of people. The Rams come into this game fresh off a first round bye. They split their final four games of the regular season. The offense stalled against two teams that made the playoffs, Bears and Eagles, and rolled over two bottom of the barrel teams which were the Cardinals and 49ers. Goff hasn’t won a playoff game in his young career. He fell flat against Atlanta last season and going up against a Dallas defense that is on absolute fire as of late could it be deja vu? Dallas comes into this game hot off a win against Seattle. Prescott has looked very good ever since Amari Cooper arrived in Dallas. Ezekiel Elliot as much as I hate that belly shirt wearing Ewok is one of the best running backs in the league. Dallas has all the momentum in the court honestly. I honestly can’t believe I’m saying this but I’m taking Dallas to cover the +7.5 point spread. I’m also going to take the under because I believe Goff and this team will fall flat under pressure in the playoffs for a second year in a row.
MW’s Pick: Dallas Cowboys 27 – Los Angeles Rams 18
Chargers @ Patriots (-4) O/U 47.5
JP: This is one of those games where nothing would surprise me. Patriots blow out Chargers? Of course they did. Chargers offense finally clicks and they blow out Pats? Sure maybe it’s their time. Either team in a close one? This is January football after all. The Patriots, well they’re the Patriots, and it almost seems a birthright year after year that they’ll be in the AFC Championship game. There has been a dip in Tom Brady’s production this year, could be age, could be coincidence. Bill Belichick however could be given Coach of the Year every single season, he never ceases to amaze me. This Pats defense looked pathetic the first 6 or so weeks of the season and now they’re back to counting on their defense in big spots to win games as the offense has relied more on the run game than in recent years. The Chargers offense has slowed down the stretch. They did enough against a tough Baltimore defense to escape with a win as Lamar Jackson caught fire for the Ravens in the 4th quarter. Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa are the key for LA in this game. Ingram played one of the best games you’ll ever see in the wild card round and Joey Bosa has rounded into form improving week to week after missing the start of the season due to injury. Bill will surely look to make sure those two don’t beat him, and I think as we’ve become accustomed too he succeeds as the Pats pull out a close one. Give me the Chargers +4 with the under.
JP’s Pick: New England Patriots 21 – Los Angeles Chargers 20
MW: I’ve been beyond confident with my pick for this game since Sunday night. The New England Patriots are dying! Their constant success is coming to an end. The team this year has been undisciplined, hurt and not your typical Bill Belichick ran Patriots team. Tom Brady seems to be at the end of the line, Josh Gordon is done for the year, Gronk is never healthy. There’s just something missing from this Pats team. They don’t wow me or impress me like Patriots teams in the past. They seem very vulnerable. As for the Chargers, Philip Rivers continues to show he is one the leagues best gunslingers. Melvin Gordon is just a tank and can do it all for that offense. Keenan Allen has stayed healthy. Defensive side of the ball for the Chargers you have young stud Joey Bosa who is capable of pressuring Brady on potentially every snap. We all know how Brady performs under constant pressure. Shoutout to my New York Giants. Thank you Michael Strahan. The 4 point spread in favor of the Patriots is very generous in my opinion. They aren’t that good. I am going to take the Chargers to cover the spread and I will also take the over in this game. I could see Brady making the occasional big play here and there and on the other side I can see Philip Rivers matching those plays and making more than Brady. Only way I see the Pats pulling this game out is if Belichick pulls a rabbit out of his ass. Which he may do.
MW’s Pick: Los Angeles Chargers 34 – New England Patriots 27
Eagles @ Saints (-8) O/U 50.5
JP: As Nick Foles drove the Eagles down field to take the lead in Chicago last week the first words of Kanye Wests “Everything I am” played in my head, “Damn, here we go again..” Can this happen again? Can a backup Quarterback once again take over for the young stud Carson Wentz and lead Philadelphia to a repeat?! I gotta be honest, nothing would shock me at this point. Philly seems to feed off the doubt, they had the Underdog masks last year and this year it’s the ski mask way. I have no analysis for the Eagles, it doesn’t make sense quite frankly, but I’m sold I believe in magic. Sean Payton is probably the best coach in the game this side of Bill Belichick, in my opinion he’s certainly the best offensive mind in football. He’s also a master motivator who rolled the Lombardi Trophy sitting on roughly $225K in cash into the locker room surrounded by four armed guards and simply said “y’all want this? Win 3 fuckn games” I absolutely love this, I’m ready to play for the man. Here’s what worries me from a Saints perspective, they sat Drew Brees in week 17 while having a bye in the playoffs. Reminds me a whole lot of 2011 Packers sitting Aaron Rodgers in week 17 during a 15-1 season, then Rodgers was rusty to start their game against the Giants and we don’t need to discuss what followed. Am I really doing this? It appears I am. Philly has the crown, why wouldn’t they walk into the Superdome and shock the world? Give me Eagles +8 and the over.
JP’s Pick: Philadelphia Eagles 31 – New Orleans Saints 28
MW: Can Big Dick Nick catch lightning in a bottle again? That’s going to be the biggest question heading into the final playoff game of the weekend. It’s not even a question at this point, when Nick Foles is under center this Eagles team plays so much better. The defense makes plays, the offensive play calling is infinitely better. Foles fits this system better than Carson Wentz. It’s hard to even argue that. The Eagles may not have the weapons on offense to match up against the Saints but Ertz, Jeffrey and Tate can make plays when needed. If the Eagles want to win this game they are going to have to rely on their defense to make some big plays. If they don’t the Saints will run them out of the building. Drew Brees is basically an ageless wonder at this point. He’s a few days removed from being forty years old and his game hasn’t dropped in the slightest. They have a two-headed monster in the backfield with Alvin Kamara and Mark Ingram. Disgusting combo. They have Michael Thomas who rarely drops a pass when its thrown his way. The Saints are jazzed up, they showed they are the best team in the NFC and I honestly believe they are going to represent the NFC in the Super Bowl this year. I think Nick Foles’ magic is going to run out on Sunday and he’s going to turn the ball over. Pencil me in for two Foles interceptions that are going to be costly for Philly. So with that being said I will take the Saints to easily cover the 8 point spread and I will also take the over and it will barely hit.
MW’s Pick: New Orleans Saints 31 – Philadelphia Eagles 20