After a crazy wildcard weekend, where the underdogs covered all four games and won three of them outright, the favorites are looking to restore some sanity in the NFL divisional playoffs.
Just like last week all four of the home teams are favored, but unlike the wildcard round, two of the home teams are favored by a touchdown or more.
New Orleans, who is the +225 favorite to win the Super Bowl, is hosting the defending champion Philadelphia Eagles. The Saints, which finished the regular season 14-2, are favored by eight points. The line has not moved since it opened late Sunday.
The Saints lost to Carolina on the last game of the season, but had already locked up the No. 1 seed in the NFC. Before that loss the team had won 12 straight. Against the spread, however, New Orleans is 8-5, including losing their last three ATS.
Rams Face Surging Cowboys
The Los Angeles Rams, who are +450 to win the Super Bowl, are seven-point picks when they host the Dallas Cowboys. The Rams finished the season 13-3 and are the NFC’s No. 2 seed.
Like New Orleans-Philadelphia, this line has not moved since it opened. The Rams, though, seem vulnerable to bettors. They lost two of their last four games, and the two games they did win in that stretch was to lowly Arizona (3-13) and San Francisco (4-12).
Dallas could present serious problems for the Rams. The Cowboys seem to have serious momentum, winning eight of their last nine games, including a 24-22 victory over Seattle in the wildcard contest.
It was the team’s first playoff victory since 2014, and quarterback Dak Prescott said they have a larger goal in mind.
“It gives us a chance to keep going on,” Prescott said. “Me and this whole team, we want to win it all. My goal is bigger than just one playoff win.”
AFC Clashes Could be Closer Contests
The two games in the AFC have lines that opened at 4.5 points. Indianapolis, who could be one of the hottest teams in the playoffs even though they have the highest odds to win the Super Bowl at 14/1, travel to Kansas City. The line has moved a point in favor of the Chiefs to 5.5.
But Kansas City is another team that appears to be an upset possibility. In regular season games against teams in this weekend’s playoffs, the Chiefs are 1-3.
They are taking on a Colts team that has won 10 of their last 11, including eliminating Houston last week. Indianapolis was a 1.5-point underdog to the Texans and won outright, 21-7.
The Los Angeles Chargers are also hoping to pull off its second straight upset. They knocked out Baltimore last week 23-17, and will try to beat New England in Foxboro.
The money has been on the Patriots thus far. The line has gone from 4.5 to four points. Part of the reason is the team’s home record in the playoffs. The last time New England lost at home in the postseason was to Baltimore in 2013. In that span they have a 9-1 record at home.