NFL Picks: Game-by-Game Over/Under Plays For The Divisional Round

Nikki Adams

Wednesday, January 13, 2016 2:35 PM GMT

Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2016 2:35 PM GMT

The second round of the NFL playoffs is upon us, the divisional round. Here are our postseason game-by-game previews complete with OVER-UNDER NFL picks.

***Don't Miss Our ATS NFL Picks For Divisional Playoffs***
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Don't Miss Our ML NFL Picks For Divisional Playoffs***
 

Wild-Card Recap OVER-UNDER Picks
While we went 3-1 with our SU picks we finished 1-3 ATS and OVER-UNDER. As it pertains to our ATS and Total NFL picks, Brian Hoyer’s nuclear meltdown, Big Ben’s untimely injury and the struggling Seahawks offense in the freezing temperatures in Minnesota all conspired against us. But we’re not going to be churlish about it. Chin up and looking ahead to the next round, the divisional round set to determine the final four teams headed into the Conference Championship games are upon us. So let’s get cracking with our OVER-UNDER NFL picks for each and every game.

Regular Season SU Record: 148-108-0
Regular Season ATS Record: 131-119-6
Regular Season O/U Record: 133-121-2
Playoffs SU Record: 3-1
Playoffs ATS Record: 1-3
Playoffs O/U Record: 1-3

 

Chiefs vs. Patriots
The Chiefs beat the Texans 30-0 to cash on the UNDER 39.5 at closing doors. It was the most lopsided game of the entire wild-card week and few could have predicted the complete and utter nuclear meltdown of the Texans. So ineffective were the hosts against a solid Chiefs defense that Alex Smith and the O-line weren’t taxed at all.

It’s unlikely the Chiefs will enjoy a similar sort of game at Gillette Stadium when they take on the defending champions New England Patriots. That said, odds makers opened with a 44.5-point total for this game but the total has been bet down to as low as 42-points at most sportsbooks.

The Patriots finished the season with a 9-7 O/U record overall and a 4-4 O/U record at home; their last six games went 2-4 SU and ATS but 4-2 O/U all while averaging 24-points scored. The Chiefs are 8-8-1 in O/U betting this season overall and 5-2-1 O/U on the road. Their last six games have gone 2-4 in O/U betting all while scoring 25 points approximately per game.

By all accounts, the consensus bet appears to be the UNDER. As a result, the NFL line has slipped down by at least two points or more at most sports betting shops. There’s good reason to go with the UNDER on your NFL picks, particularly if you’re hanging your hat on the Chiefs defense being the X-factor. We’re inclined to go the other way and take the OVER on our NFL picks, hanging our hat on Tom Brady and the Patriots offense lighting up in their first playoff game this season and the official start to their title defense campaign.

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Free NFL Pick: Over 42 (-107)
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

 

Packers vs. Cardinals
The Packers and Cardinals renew hostilities in the playoffs, only weeks after the Packers were laid to waste in the Arizona desert 38-8. The memory of that performance must rankle with reigning MVP Aaron Rodgers and the Packers, and they’re sure to be fired up for this rematch in the divisional round of the playoffs.

Obviously, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers will be looking for redemption. The entire team on both sides of the ball played awful. The Cardinals can only hope to replicate the result, but the reality is that’s unlikely. Regular season and postseason games are mutually exclusive. What happened in week 16 of the regular season, therefore, has little or no bearing on this game.

That notion gains more credibility when comparing the postseason resumes of Aaron Rodgers and Carson Palmer. The latter hasn’t won a playoff game in 12 years and is making his first playoff appearance in six years. That’s a rather bleak record, which amounts a special kind of pressure that Palmer is yet to prove he can handle. We only just saw Rodgers rise to the occasion in the nation’s capital as he led the Packers to a come-from-behind 35-18 win over the Redskins, cashing on the OVER 47 that most sportsbooks closed on in total betting markets.

On the season, the Cardinals finished with a 9-7 OVER record and a 4-4 OVER record at home. The Packers finished with a 5-11 OVER record and 4-4 OVER record on the road. Totals range anywhere from 50-points (opening) to 49.5-points (current). Consensus betting points to the OVER being the popular NFL pick in public circles. We’re of a mind to fade the public and go with the UNDER 50 on our NFL picks.

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Free NFL Pick: Under 50 (-105)
Best Line Offered: at Heritage

 

Seahawks vs. Panthers
The Seahawks offense struggled against the Minnesota Vikings something huge but, in the end, by sheer luck, the Seahawks managed to win 10-9 and advance into the divisional round to set up a rematch with the Carolina Panthers. Last year, the Seahawks beat the Panthers quite comfortably in the divisional round. The Panthers, however, threw down the gauntlet with a come-from-behind 27-24 win over the Seahawks at CenturyLink Field, masterminding one of the biggest upsets of the season en route to a complete sweep of the NFL board – winning SU, covering as the 7-point road underdogs and cashing on the OVER 41.

Odds makers went to press with a 43.5-point total on this game late Sunday, but it promptly moved up to 44 points at most sports betting exchanges following an influx of OVER betting at early doors. Indeed, consensus betting polls show the OVER is the popular NFL pick in public betting circles with 57% of early bets.

At first glance, it’s somewhat surprising that after the lacklustre 10-9 account in Minnesota NFL bettors would like the OVER in this game. If there’s one thing that might be contributing to it it’s the idea the Seahawks offense is going to bounce back in Charlotte. Plus, it’s not going to be as cold as it was in Minnesota. Then there’s the 10-5-1 OVER record the Panthers boast on the season, which includes a 5-2-1 OVER record at home. The fact that they are well rested and determined to prove their merit as the No.1 seed against the NFC standard these past few seasons also plays a factor.

Of course, if the Seahawks offense struggles as it did in Minnesota and puts up just 10-ish points, it’s hard to imagine the Panthers putting up 35 points (or whatever the difference may be required to push this game OVER 44) at the expense of the Seattle defense. The Legion of Boom has been playing well on that side of the ball.

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Free NFL Pick: Over 44 (-105)
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

 

Steelers vs. Broncos
The Steelers are headed to Mile High with Big Ben questionable and Landry Jones as their go to backup quarterback to take on a Denver Broncos side that boasts one of the stoutest defenses. We’re going to hold off on the official NFL pick for this game until more is learned about the quarterback situation of the Steelers and whether Antonio Brown’s concussion protocol.

Update: Steelers are confident Big Ben will start the game tonight, fight through his shoulder injury to give the Steelers a fighting chance to win this game on the road. Big Ben definitely improves the Steelers’ shot, if Landry Jones’ play in relief against the Bengals is anything to go by. Question is how effective will he be? Herculean his will may be but even the Steelers must share in the realism that his task is going to be extremely tough against one of the best defenses in the league. Then there is the danger he might reinjure or aggravate his injury further. On the other side of the ball, Peyton Manning is set to lead the Broncos into the playoffs, his postseason legacy on the line. He’s been struggling with his fair share of injuries too this season, not to mention playing well below his offensive standards of season past. As such, the inclination is to go UNDER in this game. Indeed, the UNDER does appear to be the consensus NFL pick. For our money, we’re of a mind to go against the grain and take the OVER 41, a total that is quite reachable given the offensive prowess of both quarterbacks should they really light up.

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Free NFL Pick: Over 41
Best Line Offered: at Bovada

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