NFL Wildcard Weekend Betting Preview
Kansas City @ Houston – Live Sky Sports 1 Saturday 9th January (21:30)
After week six in the season these two teams had just three wins between them, Houston had been playing musical quarterbacks and the Chiefs star running back Jamaal Charles had just suffered a season ending injury. It would not be too much of a stretch then to think that even the most optimistic fans of these two teams would not have expected to be suiting up for a playoff game. However, the Texans managed to come through the putrid AFC south and the Chiefs went on a 10 game win streak which would have seen them win the AFC south had the Broncos slipped up against the Chargers last week. The chiefs are currently sitting as 3.5 point favourites which I think is actually a little low. Anyone who is a regular gambler on the NFL, such as myself, has been looking forward to betting against Brian Hoyer in the post season. I would take this line as long as it stays under six, I genuinely believe the Chiefs are a very good team with one of the best defences in the NFL and a quarterback who doesn’t turn the ball over. I doubt this game will be very interesting, but the Chiefs should win this game fairly comfortably, unless Andy Reid starts doing Andy Reid things…
My Pick: Kansas City Chiefs (-3.5)
Pittsburgh @ Cincinnati – Live Sky Sports 1 Sunday 10th January (01:00)
So after it seemed as though the Steelers had thrown away their playoff chances the Jets proceeded to lose to the Bills allowing the Steelers a second chance which they went on to take with an unconvincing win over the Cleveland Browns. This leaves us with a very interesting game which is almost impossible to gamble on without knowing not only whether Andy Dalton is going to play but what type of condition he is in. The Steelers also have injury problems of their own with Deangelo Williams seeming unlikely to be ready after suffering an injured ankle against the Browns. I can’t see how Andy Daltons thumb will be fully healed so I will go with the quarterback who I trust more. Antonio Brown has also been incredible recently and I expect that to continue with a bog game to lead to Steelers to a road win.
My Pick: Pittsburgh (-3.0)
Seattle @ Minnesota – Live Sky Sports 1 Sunday 10th January (17:30)
Seattle seem to be the consensus pick for the most dangerous wild card team on the back of their incredibly impressive victory over the Arizona last week but I’m still yet to be convinced by their secondary and still believe that they can be beaten. Now, I feel obligated to mention that I am a 49ers fan and therefore have a major bias against the Seahawks but still, I like Minnesota’s chances this week. The Vikings have a high quality defence and the best running back in football so I think they have a chance to be the upset of the weekend. Minnesota are also on the back on the back of a huge win agaisnt the Packers so they should be running high on confidence. The main concern I have with the Vikings is quarterback Teddy Bridgewater, who I think will have to make a few big throws down the stretch to in this game, I think he can make these throws, but how he reacts to this kind of stage is still unknown for the second year quarterback.
My Pick: Minnesota (+5.0)
Green Bay @ Washington – Live Sky Sports 1 Sunday 10th January (21:00)
On the back on consecutive losses to Arizona and Minnesota the Green Bay Packers are not coming into the post season in the kind of form that they would have hoped. The Packers defence has struggled throughout the season and the combination of an inconsistent running game, a group of receivers that can’t get any separation from their defenders and a non-existent offensive line. The only real positive point for this team is that their quarterback is still Aaron Rodgers which always gives them a chance. In comparison, the Washington Redskins rely on a team which is good in all areas. They have a solid defence, a good running game and Kirk Cousins is in the best form of his entire career. Cousins has been aided by star tight end Jordan Reed and I expect him to be a threat in this match. Almost all the signs point to a Washington win, but Aaron Rodgers is still behind centre for the Packers, so I am going to back him to lead them to a victory. Click here for more odds and free bets.
My Pick: Green Bay (+1.0)