NFL Divisional Round Sharp Betting Picks For This Weekend (Jan. 14th – 15th)
Seattle Seahawks (11-5) at Atlanta Falcons (11-5)When: 4:35 PM ET, Saturday, January 14, 2017
Where: Georgia Dome, Atlanta, Georgia
NFL Odds: Atlanta -4.5 / Total: 51
The Seattle Seahawks (11-5 SU, 9-8 ATS) recorded an emphatic 26-6 win over Matthew Stafford and the Detroit Lions on Saturday to easily cash in as an 8-point wild card favorite just as I predicted, but now, I’m thinking the Seahawks are going down! Seattle beat Atlanta 26-24 in Week 5, though the game finished in controversy when Seattle’s Richard Sherman was not called for an apparent pass interference call against Julio Jones on the game’s final play, but again, right now, I think the Falcons are primed to extract some revenge.
The Falcons (11-5 SU, 10-6 ATS) are back in the playoffs for the first time since 2012 and come into their playoff opener with some momentum, having won their final four games of the regular season while scoring at least 33 points in every contest and topping the 40-point plateau twice. This season, Atlanta put up a stunning 33.8 points per game to rank first in scoring while also finishing the regular season ranked third in passing (295.3 ypg) and fifth in rushing (120.5 ypg). Veteran quarterback Matt Ryan has had an MVP-caliber season in throwing for 4,944 yards with 38 TD passes and 16 interceptions while completing an insane 69.9 percent of his passes.
59 percent of the betting public is on board with the Atlanta Falcons and I want to encourage you to back them as well. Seattle has been wildly inconsistent – and mostly disappointing – on offense this season and just won’t be able to put enough points on the board against the Falcons to get the SU win – or ATS cover.
I’m expecting Matt Ryan to take advantage of the fact that Seattle will be without Pro Bowl safety Earl Thomas to help the Falcons improve on their 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games following an SU win. The Seahawks are 3-5 ATS on the road this season, 1-4 ATS in their last five road games and an identical 1-4 ATS in their last five playoff games overall. Atlanta has gone 4-1 ATS in their last five games against their NFC conference rivals and I believe they’re going to find a way to narrowly cover the spread against the offensively-challenged Seahawks while extracting some revenge for their controversial regular season loss to the Falcons.
Pick: Atlanta 28 Seattle23
Pittsburgh Steelers (12-5) at Kansas City Chiefs (12-4)When: Sunday, January 15, 2017 at 1:05 PM ET
Where: Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri
NFL Odds: Kansas -1.5 / Total: 46
Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers (12-5 SU, 10-6-1 ATS) are on fire, having won eight straight games and that alone makes them an attractive pick against the Chiefs in their divisional round matchup. Kansas City won their final two regular season contests and five of their last six games overall. The best reason to bet on the Kansas City Chiefs (12-4 SU, 9-7 ATS) in this divisional round showdown is their star-studded defense.
The Chiefs have been one of my top AFC Super Bowl contenders all season long, but right now, I’m going to urge you to go with the 54 percent of public bettors that likes Pittsburgh to cover the spread at the very least. I know the Steelers are 0-4 ATS in their last four road games against Kansas City and that the home team in this AFC rivalry has gone 7-1 ATS in their last eight meetings, but Pittsburgh is 3-0-1 ATS in their last four divisional playoff games, a robust 6-1-1 ATS in their last eight games overall and 5-1-1 ATS in their last seven games against their AFC counterparts.
With the Chiefs going 3-8 ATS in their last 11 home games, 1-7 ATS in their last eight playoff games and 0-4 ATS in their last four home playoff games, I’m thinking the Steelers not only cover the spread, but do so by winning outright!
Pittsburgh 21 Kansas City 20