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  • Writer's pictureAtul Prashar

NFL Divisional Round, Playoffs. Winners: Gone Pick’n

Updated: Sep 16, 2019


Sports Business Journal Daily recently named the American Sports Gambler the most influential person in sports business. With NFL and NHL teams moving to Vegas and with states across the country pushing for the continued legalization of sports betting, the golden era of sports betting may be upon us.

In that spirit, (for entertainment purposes only), we bring you the fourth installment of our newseries where Vik Chokshi of the Action Network, and Sava360’s own Parag Parikh give you their thoughts on up to 5 NFL games each week against the spread. Note: there are only 4 games this week.

*Week 1-3 Recap ‘It takes 2 to make a thing go right’ and in week one of the playoffs our “experts” threw up deuces on both sides of the ledger, with each going 2-2 against the spread. Over the past two weeks they are both 5-4 so let’s see if week dos of the playoffs gets us closer to the ‘edge of glory.’But Lana Del Rey would tell you that ‘hope is a dangerous thing.’

*Vik’s Picks: Pats -4 The Chargers are the biggest public dog this weekend, getting over 70% of the bets. They have to travel from West to East, early (will be 10am in their body clocks) and play in the snow/ freezing cold. Betting on the Pats in the playoffs, especially at home, is usually a winning proposition. Another fun fact is that Tom Brady is 7-0 against Philip Rivers. The Pats have gone 7-0 at home in the divisional round of the playoffs since they lost to the Jets in the 2010 playoffs. I’ll put my money on Hoody and Brady, especially when they are being faded by the public.

Saints -8 Foles Magic runs out this weekend. The Saints are unstoppable at home. The Eagles secondary is going to have a hard time stopping the connection of Drew Brees and Michael Thomas, and Kamara should run wild in space. 55% of the public is on the Eagles as well, so just another reason to like the Saints. NOLA routed the Eagles 48-7 earlier this season. This won’t be that much of a waxing, but look for the Saints to win by double digits this weekend.

Cowboys +7 This line is very sharp, so I would not be surprised to see the Rams win by 7 when it is all said and done. The Cowboys can mimic what the Bears did to the Rams when they played earlier this season. Play them physical and control the line of scrimmage. Cowboys fans will also take over LA this weekend, so that should help keep this game close. If Dak can eliminate turnovers, this one will come down to a FG at the end.

Colts +5 The Colts are a “live dog” for me, as I see them with a shot at winning this game straight up, so I will take the points. KC’s weakness is their defense, and if they don’t get pressure on Luck, he will pick them apart. Indy’s D is good enough to slow the Chiefs down. Weather might come into play this weekend, as it is going to be snowy and windy. That will hurt KC more than it will the Colts as well. I will take the points, this one goes down to the wire.

Parag’s Picks: Before I get to week 2 of the playoffs let me say this about week 1. A friend texted me from Caesar’s sportsbook before the games last weekend and I told them that any teaser of any combination of underdogs for any of the NFL games should and would cover. And they did. In fact according to Caesar’s lines every dog covered straight up. ‘Who let the dogs out?’ Will that trend continue this week? Let’s see…

Teaser Colts +11 AND Over 51 ‘The Patural’ Pat Mahomes is playing his first playoff start in his own ‘Field of Dreams’. ‘Arrow’head is a very tough place to play, even if your name is ‘Oliver Queen,’ so the Colts have their work cut out for them. Expect good line play from the Colts young O-line, which should give Luck the time he needs to get the ball out. This game looks to be a shootout so I feel comfortable moving the over/under down 6 and taking a 51 over.

Now as good as Pat and KC offense has been, they have lost three big games against playoff bound teams (Chargers, Patriots, and Rams). That leads me to believe that the Colts will definitely be able to hang in with one of the most dynamic offenses in football. ‘I move you move, just like that.’ I think the Chiefs will say ‘Thank you, Next’ to the Colts and win, but by less than a TD. The relatively young Colts have a solid team in every phase but this is not their year.

Chargers +4 The Pats win at home in the Playoffs. It is what they do. And you have a west coast team going east which further stacks the odds against Philip Rivers. Rivers is winless against Brady and the Patriots in his career. The Defending AFC champs are looking to make it to their 3rd Super Bowl in a row. But they look like a shell of their former selves. The Patriots key to success this week is going to be their RBs and Gronk.

The problem for the Pats is that the Chargers play good solid defense and they can run the ball. The Chargers don’t need Rivers to have a good game to win. This game is going to come down to a Brady possession late in the 4th looking to notch a come from behind victory….but this year, I think he finally comes up a bit short. Time to wrap up your vacation ‘Alice’, because ‘The Brady Bunch’ are coming home….where they will stay for the rest of the off-season.

Teaser: Rams -1 AND over 42 To me this is the game that is most likely to get out of hand. The Cowboys are not the same team on the road – just ask the Colts. The Cowboys don’t have the dynamic offense or suffocating defense needed to keep up with the ‘Showtime’ Rams in LA. The only thing playing in the Cowboys favor is that the Rams have proven to be very vulnerable against the run. Look for Zeke to bring the ‘lightening and the thunder,’ Imagine Dragons style. The Cowboys are entering the ‘Hotel California’ – it’s a lovely place but they’re going to feel like they can’t ever leave.

Teaser: Saints -2 AND over 45 1/2 Holy forking shirtballs benches! This weekend, the Saints get to play in their ‘good place!’ The Saints crushed the Eagles in Nola earlier this year. I don’t see things going drastically differently this time around. Foles is the X factor though. The Eagles fans may have booed Santa Claus once upon a time but all of Philly is hoping Saint Nick can pull off a belated Christmas Miracle in the Big Easy.

If not for the double doink of last weekend in Chicago, the Eagles would already be home for the holidays, but their magic carpet ride runs out this weekend. The Saints are going to make the Eagles feel like Bill Murray in Punxsutawney as they score on the vulnerable Eagles Defense again and again and again. Expect a big day from Michael Thomas and Drew Brees. The Saints are going to march on to a date with destiny and the Rams in the conference championship.

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