NFL Report Playoffs Round 2
posted Jan 13 2018, 10:58AM
story by Risky Picks
posted in NFL, Betting

NFL Playoffs Round 2

*2017 NFL Season Record: 8-5-0 +$2,650

*2016 NFL Season/Playoffs Record: 

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Atlanta Facons @ Philadelphia Eagles


Vegas Lines:

Line: ATL -2.5 (-110)

Total : O/U 40 (-110/-110)



As strange as it sounds, MyBookie opened the top-seeded Eagles as 2.5-point home underdogs with a total of 41. According to our database, that makes Philadelphia the first No. 1 seed in NFL history to be an underdog in the divisional round. Since 1975, only six previous home teams have been underdogs in the round, but all of them occupied the second seed. The last time it happened was in 2013 when the wild-card San Francisco 49ers were favored by a point over the Carolina Panthers.

The biggest reason for this is obviously Philly’s situation under center, as Nick Foles hasn’t commanded much respect from oddsmakers. Foles is far from the worst backup quarterback in the league but he is prone to ugly games, which we saw in the Eagles’ Week 16 19-10 triumph over the Oakland Raiders. If Philadelphia is going to win this game, Foles must avoid turning the ball over and the Eagles’ fourth-ranked defense in the NFL will need to step up and slow down the Falcons’ high-octane offense.

That’s easier said than done, though. Atlanta is rolling into the divisional round in the wake of a big 26-13 road win over the Los Angeles Rams. Julio Jones could create headaches for the Eagles secondary, as the wideout hauled in nine of 10 targets from quarterback Matt Ryan vs the Rams. In seven playoff games together, the duo have connected on 80 percent of their passes – the best mark of any QB-WR pair with 20-plus attempts in the playoffs since 2011.

The good news for Philadelphia is they’re 7-1 SU and 5-3 ATS at home this season, with the lone straight-up setback coming in the regular-season finale against the Dallas Cowboys in which they rested the majority of their starters. The Falcons have traditionally been a terrible play when travelling to Pennsylvania, evidenced by Atlanta going 1-7 SU and 1-6-1 ATS in its last eight trips to Lincoln Financial Field.

As far as the total goes, recent trends are favoring the UNDER in this one. In the last 12 meetings between the Falcons and Eagles, the UNDER is 9-3. Philly also has a habit of going below totals in the postseason, as the UNDER has paid out in 10 of its last 13 playoff games. The Falcons have been an UNDER boon lately, as each of their last six games has gone below the total.

Doug Pederson will have no shortage of bulletin board material for his club due to the underdog label, and the Falcons appear to be on a collision course to make up for last year’s embarrassing second-half Super Bowl collapse to the New England Patriots. In a weekend loaded with enticing matchups, this tilt has the makings of an instant classic.


Key Trends

The Falcons are 2-5 ATS in their last seven games in the divisional round.

The Eagles are 5-1 SU in their last six games in the divisional round.

The Eagles are 5-2 ATS in their last seven games at home.

Atlanta is 6-3 ATS in its last 9 games

Atlanta is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games

The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Atlanta's last 5 games

Atlanta is 2-5 ATS in its last 7 games on the road

Philadelphia is 9-4 ATS in its last 13 games

Philadelphia is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games

Philadelphia is 12-2 SU in its last 14 games

The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Philadelphia's last 7 games







Tennessee Titans @ New England Patriots


Vegas Lines:

Line : NE -13.5 (-110)

Total : O/U 48 (-110)



The Patriots are on a serious run in home playoff games. They’ve won six in a row where they’ve covered the spread five times, winning the games by an average of 17.8 points. Lopsided wins at home are nothing new for the Patriots. They won their three most recent home games by a combined 59 points, with each win coming by at least 18 points.

While Tom Brady and the offense get most of the credit, the defense has quietly been one of the league’s best. In their last five home games, they’ve allowed just 11.8 points per game, which paved the way to covering the spread in each of those games. This all matches up with a Titans offense that’s averaging just 18 points per game on the road. Marcus Mariota did enough to win last week, but he’s been brutal on the road this season, throwing 12 picks and just seven touchdown passes.

It shouldn’t come as much of a shock to hear this matchup has been incredibly one-sided with the Patriots winning the last six games between the teams with an average win margin of 20.8. Another trend for Patriots backers to sink their teeth into is that the Titans are just 1-7 ATS in their last eight games as a double-digit dog.

The game also features the largest total of the week, currently hovering in the 47-point range. If New England’s defense continues its stingy ways at home, the offense likely needs to do the majority of the work for the total to go OVER. The Patriots are averaging the second-most points per game at home this season (29.4), while they’ve averaged 36.6 points per game during their six-game home playoff win streak.

You’re probably thinking this preview comes off as extremely one-sided, which is 100 percent accurate. The majority of the stats and trends I uncovered all point toward the Patriots, but to be fair, everything also pointed away from the Titans in the wild-card round, and we saw how that turned out.


Key Trends

The Patriots are 9-1 ATS in their last 10 games.

The Titans are 7-20-1 ATS in their last 28 games after a win.

The total has gone OVER in seven of the Patriots’ last 10 games at home.

Tennessee is 6-1 ATS in its last 7 games

Tennessee is 8-4 SU in its last 12 games

The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Tennessee's last 7 games

Tennessee is 7-14 ATS in its last 21 games on the road

New England is 9-1 ATS in its last 10 games

New England is 11-1 SU in its last 12 games

The total has gone UNDER in 4 of New England's last 5 games

New England is 5-0 ATS in its last 5 games at home








Jacksonville Jaguars @ Pittsburgh Steelers


Vegas Lines:

Line : PIT -7 (-110)

Total : O/U 41 (-110)



Favored teams went 0-4 ATS last week after an astounding regular season and it seems like books are intentionally setting these lines too high. That said, Pittsburgh has the massive home-field advantage in Steeltown on Sunday afternoon and considering how poor Blake Bortles has been in recent weeks, the line makes a lot of sense.

Mix in Bortle’s form with his lack of experience in cold weather (he’s played one NFL game in below-freezing temperatures) and you have the recipe for a disastrous performance against the Steelers’ very underrated defense.

This isn’t just anecdotal either as teams that are housed in warm climates (Jaguars, Dolphins, Chargers, Rams, Buccaneers, Raiders, 49ers) are an incredible 1-12 straight up and 5-8 against the spread the last four seasons when playing in sub-freezing conditions.

In order for the Jaguars to succeed on Sunday, they’ll have to run the ball effectively – which they did in their Week 5 30-9 thumping of the Steelers – and they’ll have to sell out to stop Le’Veon Bell with Antonio Brown likely handicapped by a serious injury of which there’s some doubt he’s actually fully recovered from.


Key Trends

Ben Roethlisberger is 5-0 SU with a 110.8 passer rating in his last 5 games in sub-freezing conditions.

Favorites are 50-15 SU and 35-27-3 ATS in the last 65 NFL games in sub-freezing conditions.

The total has gone UNDER in the Jaguars’ last 3 games against the Steelers.

Jacksonville is 8-3 SU in its last 11 games

Jacksonville is 6-19 SU in its last 25 games on the road

The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Jacksonville's last 6 games on the road

Jacksonville is 12-5 ATS in its last 17 games when playing Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh is 1-5 ATS in its last 6 games

Pittsburgh is 10-1 SU in its last 11 games

The total has gone OVER in 5 of Pittsburgh's last 7 games

Pittsburgh is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games at home




New Orleans Saints @ Mineesota Vikings


Vegas Lines:

Line : MIN -5 (-110)

Total : O/U 46.5 (-110)



So much has changed with these two squads since their Week 1 meeting. Adrian Peterson was pouting on the sideline, Sam Bradford and Dalvin Cook had use of both of their knees and Case Keenum was a perennial backup. Fast-forward to the playoffs and now Keenum has a legitimate MVP case, Alvin Kamara is a lock for Offensive Rookie of the Year and the biggest shock of all, the Saints pass defense is competent. 

Although ranked 15th in passing yards allowed this season, it’s a dramatic shift compared to past seasons when the Saints routinely were near the bottom of the NFL in that category. This upgrade (along with Kamara) is the main reason why New Orleans is back in the playoffs after missing out on the postseason for three straight years.

However, what is not shocking is how well the Vikings play at home. Minnesota has been a juggernaut at U.S. Bank Stadium this season and Mike Zimmer’s defense is no joke. The Vikes have held teams to an average of 12.5 points per game at home and in their final three regular-season games allowed only 5.7.

It’s not just this season that opponents have had their ship wrecked up north as Minnesota is 25-10 SU and 26-9 ATS in its last 35 home games. The Vikings’ No. 2-ranked rush defense will be put to the test vs Kamara and Mark Ingram, as the running backs combined to average over 193 yards from scrimmage per game this season. Minnesota may be up to the challenge, though, as its third-down defense was extraordinary. Opponents all year had an uphill battle to sustain drives vs the Vikings’ stingy defense, which allowed 25 percent of all third-down opportunities to be converted.

The fate of either team may come down to quarterback play. Keenum will be starting his first playoff game and was serviceable in seven home games this season, throwing eight touchdowns and only two interceptions with a 100.1 QBR. On the flip side, Drew Brees was competent away from the Bayou but it didn’t translate to wins as the Saints finished 4-4 SU and ATS on the road. Bettors will also be interested to know that in five road playoff games, Breezy is 1-4 SU and has thrown eight touchdowns and five interceptions. Very pedestrian numbers for a future Hall of Famer.

The total opened at 44 and while Minnesota’s defense is ferocious, the OVER should be heavily considered. Both the Saints and Vikings averaged over 23 points per game this season and New Orleans still managed 25.7 points per game on the road despite the mixed results in the W-L column.


Key Trends

The total has gone UNDER in seven of the Vikings’ last eight games in the playoffs.

The Vikings are 6-2 SU in their last eight games at home vs teams with winning records.

The total has gone OVER in five of the Saints’ last seven games as an underdog.

New Orleans is 1-4 ATS in its last 5 games

New Orleans is 12-3 SU in its last 15 games

The total has gone OVER in 4 of New Orleans' last 6 games

New Orleans is 12-5-1 ATS in its last 18 games on the road

Minnesota is 9-2 ATS in its last 11 games

Minnesota is 11-1 SU in its last 12 games

The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Minnesota's last 5 games

Minnesota is 4-1 ATS in its last 5 games at home
















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