Wild Card Picks

By: Eric Cohen

Friday, January 5, 2018

After a very successful regular season we look to keep rolling for the Wild Card Round. Last year the 4 home teams all won and covered as big favorites. It is very tough for road to teams to win in this round and I expect more of the same starting Saturday night.

Titans +8 at Chiefs: After losing 4 in a row the Titans salvaged their season with a week 17 win over Jacksonville to make the playoffs. The problem is they are not in good form. Marcus Mariota has not had a good year and the TItans will be with out starting running back Demarco Murray. The Chiefs were in a terrible funk until they beat the Chargers to capture the division and then finished the year strong. The Chiefs historically have choked in the playoffs so they will be very motivated to erase that label in this one. Pick: Chiefs

Falcons +6.5 at Rams: I could not be more impressed with the Rams young talent. Goff and Gurley will be great for a decade and the Rams could be a dynasty in the NFL West. This match up is not ideal for them. Atlanta is actually the only team in the NFC to make the playoffs from last season and we all know how that ended blowing a 28-3 Superbowl lead. The Falcons offense was nothing like last years but did find a way to win 10 games and get back to the post season. The Rams were 7-1 on the road but just 4-4 at home. They don't have a home field advantage at all in Los Angeles. While I think the Rams win I believe this one is close and lean the dog with the price. Pick: Falcons

Bills +9 at Jacksonville: The Wagons have been circled in Buffalo. The Bills are back in the playoffs for the first time since the music city debacle in 1999. It's been a long time coming and the Bills are unfortunately not going to have their best offensive player healthy as LeSean McCoy is a game time decision and if he plays will not be close to 100%. This is terrible since Jacksonville is vulnerable to the run and has the best pass defense in football. Don't expect much from Tyrod Taylor through the air as Buffalo will have to find a way to get it done on the ground. After a hot month Blake Bortles was terrible in his final 2 starts. While the Jags are confident in Bortles the Bills defense that relied on turnovers to start the year 5-2 could be in line for some big interceptions. With a revenge factor in place with Doug Marrone who quit on the Bills now coaching the Jags, Buffalo will be a motivated football team for sure. This one should be close. Pick: Bills

Panthers +7 at Saints: New Orleans has beaten Carolina twice this year and did it easily. They do say it is hard to beat the same team 3 times in one season. While I think the Saints will accomplish that feat I believe Carolina can keep it close. The Panthers have a very solid defense and if Cam Newton can play the way he can the Panthers should be able to stay in the game. The Saints have a dynamic offense featuring 2 pro bowl running backs a great quarterback and core of receivers. What gives New Orleans an edge is also the improvements they have made on defense. This one should be fun and come down to the wire. Pick: Panthers

Enjoy the playoffs everyone!!