Saturday, January 12, 2019

2018 NFL Playoffs: Divisional Round

Indianapolis Colts (+5-1/2) at Kansas City Chiefs: These teams met in the postseason five years ago, and oh what a memorable game it was. Trailing by 28 points in the third quarter at home, the Colts made a furious rally to escape with a 45-44 victory. Add to that the fact the Chiefs haven't won a home playoff game since the 1993 postseason (when Joe Montana was their quarterback), they have some serious demons to exorcise. Given Kansas City had the top ranked offense in the 2018 regular season in terms of yardage and points scored, they're in a good position to break through. However, Andrew Luck and the Colts will get theirs against KC's defense which ranked 31st in yards allowed.
Kansas City 45 Indianapolis 44

Dallas Cowboys (+7) at Los Angeles Rams: After a blistering start to the regular season (11-1), the Rams cooled off down the stretch, finishing 2-2. Sure, they still finished the season with the second ranked offense in scoring and yardage, but their run defense is in a very vulnerable spot this game. In the regular season, the Rams allowed a league worst 5.1 yards per carry, which has to have Cowboys running back (and NFL rushing champion) Ezekiel Elliott licking his proverbial chops. 
Dallas 31 Los Angeles Rams 27

Los Angeles Chargers (+4) at New England Patriots: Chargers QB Philip Rivers is 0-7 lifetime in head-to-head matchups with Pats quarterback Tom Brady. And the head coach-QB duo of Bill Belichick and Brady is 19-3 in home playoff games, including 8 consecutive postseason wins on their home field.

Once again I stick with my simple philosophy that I don't go against Belichick/Brady at home in the postseason.
New England 27 Los Angeles Chargers 24

Philadelphia Eagles (+8) at New Orleans Saints: This is a rematch from Week 11 where New Orleans crushed Philly 48-7. The Eagles fell to 4-6 after that game, so there was no scenario I could envision where they'd have another crack at the Saints in the postseason, but here we are.

The Eagles had two first half turnovers in their game last week against the Chicago Bears. However, a pedestrian Bears offense could only muster 3 points off those two miscues. If Philly turns it over against the Saints, Drew Brees and Co. will make them pay big time.

I don't see New Orleans prevailing by 41 points again but I do believe they win comfortably.
New Orleans 38 Philadelphia 21

My 2018 Postseason Record:
Against the Spread: 1-2-1
Straight Up: 2-2


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