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NFL Wild Card Picks: Against the Spread & Over/Under (2022 Playoffs)

Jan 14, 2022


 
On Saturday, teams will begin tussling for their NFL lives once Wild Card Weekend kicks off. What makes it even better is that we’re graced with the first-ever Monday night playoff game when the Arizona Cardinals take on the Los Angeles Rams on Jan. 17 at 8:15 PM EST. Not only do football fans now get three nights to win some cash during the first week of the NFL postseason, but we’ve got our most accurate betting experts here to share their favorite bets and help you get paid in the process! Read on below to see what they’re picking this weekend.

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View picks from the entire consensus for each Wild Card playoff game:
LV @ CIN (-5.5) | NE @ BUF (-4.0) | PHI @ TB (-8.5) | SF @ DAL (-3.0) | PIT @ KC (-12.5) | ARI @ LAR (-4.0)

Q1. Which team are you most confident in against the spread and why?

“Picking against a Bill Belichick team in the postseason may be risky, but the Patriots have lost three of their last four games, while Buffalo (-4) has won four straight. Mac Jones had a nice rookie season, but playing in the postseason and on the road in Buffalo is a completely different element. In the Bills’ 11 wins during the season, their lowest point differential was 12, so giving four points is something I’m willing to do.”
– Rich Piazza (Fantasy Shed)

“It’s almost impossible to hide from the narrative that Rams quarterback Matthew Stafford ‘can’t win a big game,’ but the reality is that he is currently in the best position of his career. He has a head coach that took Jared Goff to the Super Bowl, has the Triple Crown Winner leading the wide receiver position, and is in a matchup against a Cardinals team that he beat a few weeks earlier to regain control of the NFC West. Los Angeles (-4) is giving more than a field goal worth of points, and there’s probably a reason for such a telling number: the Rams are in position to win and cover.”
– Mario Mergola (Sporfolio)

“The Kansas City Chiefs (-12.5) are my best bet of the week. Looking back, teams in the playoffs who are double-digit favorites cover at a very high percentage. On top of that, we just saw this movie a couple of weeks ago and it ended poorly for the Steelers losing to the Chiefs 36-10 in Arrowhead.”
– Doug Roth (FantasyPros)

“The Steelers (+12.5) come into their game on a two-game winning streak, and a ‘nobody believes in us’ mentality. I understand the recency bias most will have after seeing Pittsburgh lose 36-10 only a few short weeks ago in KC. However, this is exactly why I love the Steelers in this spot.”
– Derek Yoder (Picks By Blaze)

View more picks against the spread from dozens of experts >>

Q2. Which matchup are you most confident in picking the over/under and why?

SF at DAL: 51 – Over
“The Cowboys and 49ers will meet on Sunday with the highest over-under of any game of the weekend. That’s not an accident. Dallas led the league in yards gained and points scored, while San Francisco finished seventh-best in yards. The real value of the matchup comes from the Cowboys, though, where the team is trying to erase countless years of playoff failures and probably can’t do so without a big performance on the offensive side of the ball. They’re talented enough to carry the bulk of the point total themselves, but the 49ers’ offense has a sneaky path to points, too. The Cowboys may have only given up the seventh-fewest points, but they rank just 19th in yards allowed.”
– Mario Mergola (Sporfolio)

LV at CIN: 48.5 – Over
“With the exception of their playoff-clinching win over the Chargers, the Raiders’ defense has played well, albeit against less than stellar passing games. That won’t be the case against a Bengals offense that is rolling. Joe Burrow has thrown for over 300 yards in four out of his last five games, and over 1,000 yards in his last two games. The Raiders can also throw the ball around, as they averaged the sixth-highest passing yards per game in the league during the regular season. Vegas is going to have to throw and score a lot to keep pace with the Bengals’ offense, pushing the game total above the over.”
– Rich Piazza (Fantasy Shed)

NE at BUF: 44 – Over
“The Over 44 in the Buffalo versus New England game is looking sweet. The last time these two teams met only four short weeks ago, we saw a total of 54. Of course, we also saw the crazy weather game between these two. I have not heard about anything that would push this game into a defensive struggle from mother nature, so take the over.”
– Doug Roth (FantasyPros)

LV at CIN: 48.5 – Over
“Since the Wild Card schedule was released, the one game I circled instantly was Raiders @ Bengals. Why? Well, when you match up two teams that are offensively focused and willing to take risks at every opportunity, this almost always leads me to take the over. With the total currently set at 49, I’ll take this number all day.”
– Derek Yoder (Picks By Blaze)

View full set of consensus Over/Under game picks here >>

Q3. What is your single favorite prop bet for this weekend’s games and why?

Jalen Hurts: 197.5 Passing Yards – Over
“It’s easy to equate Hurts with a rushing prop, but I’m targeting his passing yards on Sunday. He has cleared 197.5 yards in each of his last three games. Not coincidentally, those were three wins. He will have a much more difficult task ahead as he faces the defending Super Bowl Champions on the road, but that’s exactly why we should anticipate a higher volume. If the Eagles are trailing late, they will be forced to throw. If not, it’s probably because Hurts did enough damage early to give his team the lead. Either way, his prop is modest overall, but suspiciously high for him specifically. I’m buying the over.”
– Mario Mergola (Sporfolio)

Deebo Samuel: 63.5 Receiving Yards – Over
“I’m not going to let the limited amount of receptions deter me from taking the over on Samuel’s 63.5 receiving yards. Samuel has crushed that mark eight times this season, including two of his last three games (had 63 yards on Jan. 2), and Dallas is near the bottom of the league in giving up yards after the catch.”
– Rich Piazza (Fantasy Shed)

Joe Mixon: Scoring a Touchdown
“The best prop bet on the market is Mixon to score a touchdown (-165). The Las Vegas Raiders have allowed a touchdown to a running back in nine straight weeks. They have allowed multiple in many of those games, so if you are feeling frisky, Mixon to score two touchdowns is +370.”
– Doug Roth (FantasyPros)

Pittsburgh Steelers: 16.5 Total Points – Over
“The over on Pittsburgh’s total is my favorite prop bet entering this weekend. With Ben Roethlisberger given the opportunity to call more offensive plays in-game, it gives Pittsburgh a better opportunity to move the ball down the field while giving Big Ben a better say on who he wants in the game on offense. Nothing gives me more confidence than having a QB in control who has explosive playmakers all around him and an aggressive defense that is prone to forcing the opposition to make costly mistakes, especially in their own territory.”
– Derek Yoder (Picks By Blaze)

View all major prop bets for each player and team >> 


Thank you to the experts for taking the time to provide their picks and analysis. Please give them a follow on Twitter for more advice throughout the playoffs.


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