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The NFL playoffs resume on Sunday with three Wild Card games to kick things off.

All three matches on Sunday, like all the games of this round, are rematches of the regular season. It is the first time since 2009 that the entire tour is full of rematches.

Here are my thoughts on Saturday’s slate, including what I’m betting on and some fun predictions for the final scores for each. Enjoy the games and good luck with whatever you decide to bet.

I just don’t see how Miami’s puny defense can slow down Buffalo’s explosive offense, especially considering Josh Allen excelled all season under pressure. That doesn’t bode well for the lightning-heavy Miami scheme.

Therefore, that will put pressure on Skylar Thompson (in a super hostile environment) to keep the Dolphins in the game with his hand. It probably won’t end well.

It’s bills or nothing. And I didn’t even get to the Buffalo Giants special teams.

Featured Nugget. Double-digit playoff underdogs are 3-11 against the spread (ATS) since 2011.

Prediction of the final grade. Bills 30, Dolphins 13

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If you throw out Week 18’s largely meaningless game against a tanking Bears team, each of the Vikings’ previous 11 wins has all come by one possession. Meanwhile, 13 of New York’s 17 games were decided by one score.

Long story short. There’s a very good chance this game ends in a Vikings win, which is why I was comfortable baiting giants up to +9 (with the Bucs) even if it’s not the ideal “Wong teaser.”

When these two teams met a few weeks ago, the Vikings were locked in as a 4.5 point favorite. They ended up winning that game on a field goal, but the Giants finished with nearly 100 more total yards and a 1.7 yard edge per play.

Also, since that contest, the Giants are in much better health, especially on the defensive side of the ball. Don’t underestimate the importance of getting both Adoree Jackson and Xavier McKean back from secondary injury, especially in this game. Justin Jefferson had 12 catches for 133 yards and a touchdown in the first meeting without those two in the backfield.

With a healthy secondary, the pressure the Giants can bring with the blitz could cause serious problems for Kirk Cousins. He especially struggled against the blitz this season in a new offensive scheme.

That could be even more problematic when you consider that Minnesota’s offensive line won’t be at full strength after losing right tackle Brian O’Neal to injury. It’s a huge loss that few people talk about. It’s also worth noting that starting center Garrett Bradbury is also injured.

I think this line is pretty close to fair, although I’m closer to 2 when I factor in injuries and dive a little further into the game, which is why I was comfortable. taunting giants, even at +3.

This should come right down to the message, as you would expect with these two teams, but I’ll go with the mini upset and take the G-Menwho will also benefit from the familiarity of having already played in Minnesota earlier this season.

Featured Nugget. Daniel Jones is 13-2 (86.7%) ATS as a single-digit road underdog. However, since 2002, first-time starting quarterbacks have gone just 14-35-1 ATS (28.5%) against quarterbacks with playoff experience.

Prediction of the final grade. Giants 27, Vikings 24

The Bengals have a huge edge at quarterback and wide receiver, which will likely be the difference in this divisional showdown. However, I think this is one too many points for a franchise that has had as much success at this road point under John Harbaugh as any organization in the last 15 years.

I think the Ravens defense remains one of the most underrated units in the league after trading Roquan Smith and getting a few other key pieces back from injury. They also have cornerbacks on the outside who can at least match up with Cincinnati’s dynamic wideouts. For what it’s worth, Joe Burrow has struggled with both Marcus Peters and Marlon Humphrey both out.

Also, little is said about the injuries to the offensive line that Cincinnati has suffered with LaEl Collins and now Alex Capa on the right side. Burrow has been under a lot of pressure in the second half of the past two games following those two respective injuries. Hakeem Adeniji and Max Scharping are both big commitments.

Baltimore will need to master the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball and can rely on its elite defense and core special teams (and coaching) to keep it within numbers. The Ravens won’t be afraid of this round and just played at Cincinnati, further reducing home field advantage in the divisional game.

The Ravens probably can’t get more than 20 with their limited offense. They haven’t scored more than 17 since losing Lamar Jackson, but I think they’ll try to follow the same formula they’ve used to win games in ugly fashion down that stretch, which should result in coverage here without key turnovers. which Tyler Huntley will give you the best chance of avoiding.

Run Dobbins all night, look for Andrews on third downs, take a deep shot down the sidelines every blue moon, and feel comfortable leaning on defense and special teams. That’s the formula for the Ravens lineup in a game I think will be closer than most.

Featured Nugget. John Harbaugh is 5-0 straight (SU) and ATS in road Wild Card games, averaging 15 points per game.

Prediction of the final grade. Bengals 20, Ravens 17

If the Cowboys hadn’t fallen in this stretch, especially last week in Washington, this line would probably be 3 or maybe even 3.5. Alas, we have 2.5 instead, making the Bucs the perfect teaser. I paired them with the Giantsas I mentioned above.

That said, I have far more concerns about the Cowboys in this particular matchup. Since the injury to cornerback Anthony Brown, their secondary has fallen off a cliff for a defense that has allowed the most yards per game of any team in the NFL over the past five weeks. Assuming the play-calling doesn’t get too vanilla on early downs, Tom Brady could set this rotating defensive back apart, though the health of the center position is certainly worth monitoring.

If Ryan Jensen can return, it could be a huge boost to Tampa’s offensive line. If he can’t, and his bench injury is serious, it could create big problems for Brady, who struggles with internal pressure. And Dallas can still generate pressure with the best.

Likewise, the passing offense has suffered a similar fate with Dak Prescott struggling with too many turnovers in his reads. If you can slow down Dallas’ potent offensive attack, you can stop this offense in its tracks. Getting Dak Prescott to beat you as a pass rusher is the way to success for opposing defenses against the Cowboys.

So can Tampa lock down Zeke and Pollard? I think so. Their run defense has not lived up to expectations on the season. For example, the Bucs ranked just 20th in first run defense.

However, their defensive numbers across the board have been heavily impacted by injuries along the defensive line and in the secondary. With Vita Vea and Akiem Hicks both in the lineup, the Bucs went 6-1, allowing just 3.9 yards per rush and 15 points per game. Without both, they went 2-7 while allowing 4.8 yards rushing and 25 points per game. That’s a drastic difference.

Combine the health up front with a now-healthy secondary, and this defense is as healthy as it has been since holding the Cowboys to three points in a Week 1 win.

me too to believe Dallas an insult has some negative red zone regression, meanwhile the opposite is true for Tampa’s defense. It shows everything Buccaneer a healthy defense is the underrated unit in this game that ultimately makes the difference.

Featured Nugget. The Cowboys lost to the Bucks 19-3 earlier this season. Teams with double-digit losses in regular season games that are listed as favorites in the playoff rematch have won just 11-21 ATS (33.33%) over the past 20 years.

Prediction of the final grade. Buccaneers 24, Cowboys 20


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