If not for the injury to Carson Wentz, Wild Card weekend could’ve been incredibly profitable in this space. Instead, we’ll “settle” for another winning week and, with only three more slates of NFL football this season, time is precious.
Before diving into what is perhaps the best weekend of the year in the sport, let’s catch up on where things are through 18 weeks of action.
- Wild Card: 3-2
- 2019 Season: 52-43-1
Come get these winners.
Minnesota Vikings (+7) over San Francisco 49ers
This does scare me a little bit. Kirk Cousins did what he needed to do to pull the upset last week and we profited as a result. This is a different beast in that San Francisco’s defense had an extra week to prepare and the Niners project to be getting some additional help in the form of injury returns. Still, the record of quarterbacks making their first playoff start is not favorable (against the spread, anyway) and I don’t trust Jimmy Garoppolo. The Niners will win the game more likely than not but, at the full seven, give me the dog.
Minnesota Vikings and San Francisco 49ers UNDER 44.5 points
In some respects, liking the Vikings in this game seems to correlate with the under. Minnesota’s defense hasn’t been as good as you might think, but they’ve had success against tight ends and that is huge against George Kittle. The sharp guys already hit this total under and pushed it down but, at 44.5, it’s still enough to get us there. Let the punts and field goals reign.
Tennessee Titans and Baltimore Ravens UNDER 47 points
Speaking of punts and field goals… here we are. There is potential for strong winds in the forecast and both teams might be okay grinding clock with their running games. Baltimore should have decent success in bottling up Derrick Henry but, even if the Ravens get a little bit loose behind Lamar Jackson, this feels like a 24-13 type game.
Kansas City Chiefs (-5.5) over Houston Texans in the first half
I don’t like to lay points in this space and that especially extends to a large favorite like Kansas City. Throw in the potential for Deshaun Watson backdoor magic and I can’t, in good conscience, give out the Chiefs for the full game. I do like the fact that Houston has struggled out of the gate in recent playoff games and Andy Reid is one of the best at working with extra time. Let’s rock with KC to take a healthy lead at the halftime break.
Seattle Seahawks and Green Bay Packers UNDER 47 points
I was really excited to pick against the Packers. Then, they drew the Seahawks. I don’t trust either one of these teams but the number on the side feels right. The total is a touch high, however, and we’ll close the weekend with a good, old-fashioned sweat on the Under. It isn’t my most convincing pick of all-time, but Seattle’s insistence on “establishing the run” combined with Green Bay’s willingness to let teams hang around results in this play.