Image Credit: (Cary Edmondson/USA Today Sports)
Written by: Nicholas Mullick Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/nicholas-mullick-354076184/
Well we are here, it is playoff time and I have yet again decided to make my spread picks for the entire playoffs. Now it is the Divisional Round matchup. Before we do that below is my spread pick record.
Spread Picks Record Week 1 (8-8) Week 2 (9-7) Week 3 (9-6-1) Week 4 (6-8-2) Week 5 (4-11-1) Week 6 (8-6) Week 7 (9-5) Week 8 (7-8) Week 9 (7-5-1) Week 10 (7-7) Week 11 (5-9) Week 12 (12-3-1) Week 13 (8-7) Week 14 (6-7) Week 15 (6-10) Week 16 (7-6-3) Week 17 (6-9) *I decided to not count the Bills vs Bengals for my record.* Week 18 (8-6) *Did not Included the NE/BUF or BAL/CIN Game* Week 19 (4-1-1) *Wildcard Round of the Playoffs*
Superlock Record (9-9) - Week 1: Baltimore Ravens, Week 2: Cleveland Browns, Week 3: Atlanta Falcons, Week 4: Houston Texans, Week 5: Philadelphia Eagles, Week 6: Jacksonville Jaguars, Week 7 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Week 8: Tennessee Titans, Week 9: Seattle Seahawks, Week 10 Dallas Cowboys, Week 11: Washington Commanders, Week 12: San Francisco 49ers, Week 13: Houston Texans, Week 14: Miami Dolphins, Week 15: Cincinnati Bengals, Week 16: Arizona Cardinals, Week 17: Dallas Cowboys, Week 18: San Francisco 49ers, Week 19: Buffalo Bills
Miami gave more of a fight then I thought they would. It was not enough to win, but I am impressed with how they played in that game.
Now that we have seen my record, let's get straight into the picks for the Divisional Round.
Jacksonville Jaguars at Kansas City Chiefs (-8.5)
In my heart I want the Jaguars so badly to yet again reach the AFC Championship and maybe even represent the AFC in Super Bowl 57. However, this game just has domination written all over. Like the Patriots/Broncos level of dominance when Tim Tebow was the QB for the Broncos.
The Jaguars may have had a historic comeback, but Lawrence got so exposed in the 1st half of that game. If Brandon Staley was not a hack of a head coach the Jags would have lost that game. On a side note, why is Brandon Staley still employed as the head coach of the Chargers?
I can really see the Chiefs just destroy Lawrence the entire game on defense. If I am the Jags I would definitely try to use Etienne more and utilize Evan Engram who has emerged as a player on offense. It is going to be tough to operate around the Chiefs defense.
The Jags defense is okay, but they suck at covering tight ends. According to DVOA they are the worst team in the NFL when covering tight ends. I can really see just Mahomes constantly throwing to Travis Kelce and just getting 4 touchdowns. I will take the Chiefs here.
My Pick: Kansas City Chiefs (-8.5)
New York Giants at Philadelphia Eagles (-7.5)
I keep saying this about the Giants and I will never stop, but they are a big example as to why coaching matters in this league. Heck look at what Brian Daboll did with Daniel Jones. Jones was toast when Shurmur and Judge were the head coach and he is just a different breed under Daboll’s influence. However I got to be honest, I want to see how Jones performs against a real defense as lets be real the Vikings defense is awful. Heck even looking back at the Giants this season except for the Ravens, Eagles, Washington, and Jacksonville the defenses that Jones played against were either mediocre or terrible.
I really like the Philadelphia Eagles in this game. With the defense fully healthy I can really see Jones throw like 3 or 4 picks in this game. Hurts should be 100% in this game and fully healed from his shoulder injury. I mean I like Gardner Minshew, but the offense will have a big boost with Jalen Hurts at QB. I do worry a bit about OT Lane Johnson’s availability as he is still hurt, but I think he will play. The Eagles should take care of business and move onto the NFC Championship game next week.
My Pick: Philadelphia Eagles (-7.5)
Cincinnati Bengals at Buffalo Bills (-5)
This to me is the game of the week as this is going to be a very competitive game. I do have concerns with both teams though.
First off with the Bills, they may have beaten the Dolphins last week, but man they got exposed. To me I think their defense got exposed as they are missing Von Miller so much on this defense. They could not hold well or put pressure against Skylar Thompson who was awful most of the season. Also Miami did something not a lot has done this season, contain Josh Allen. Allen looked off last week and it was mainly due to how contained Allen was.
For the Bengals, they were already down o-linemen entering the playoffs. Well it just got worse as OT Jonah Williams suffered a dislocated kneecap and will be out for the playoffs.
That is a huge loss as Williams was the blindside tackle which to me is the most important position on offense. You can say QB, but you need a blindside tackle to really succeed in the NFL.
However besides those concerns I have I think this will be a very competitive and close game. I think the Bills will win this game, but 5 points is a bit much for me.
My Pick: Cincinnati Bengals (+5)
Dallas Cowboys at San Francisco 49ers (-3.5)
This is a strange spread for this game. The 49ers have a lot more rest and are the home team. I get that the 49ers secondary is not great, but they are so much more talented than the Cowboys are. I thought this spread was going to be at around 5.5 or 6.
Dallas played well last week, but they played the Buccaneers who are legit the worst team that made the playoffs last season. This week is a true test for them, but I just don’t think they have enough to beat the 49ers.
Especially as the Cowboys have issues with their special teams. At one point I thought the Cowboys were going to cut Brett Maher with the way he kicked against the Buccaneers last week. But it looks like they are going to keep him as he was one of the best kickers last season. I do find it interesting how they signed Tristan Vizcaino to there practice squad, but that is probably insurance if Maher yet again struggles.
I am taking the 49ers in this game and I am taking the 49ers with my Superlock this week.
My Pick: San Francisco 49ers (-3.5) *Superlock Pick of the Week*