Wild Card Saturday: Best Lines, Bets, And Trends

  • The NFL playoffs begin Saturday where the Buffalo Bills facing the Indianapolis Colts as a seven-point favorite on -310 betting odds.
  • The Los Angeles Rams face the Seattle Seahawks (-3.5) and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-8.5) take on the Washington Football Team as well.

LAS VEGAS – The NFL playoffs are finally here and bettors are keying into the action beginning this Saturday.

This weekend will feature six playoff games to decide the first round of the playoffs, with three of those games coming Saturday to take the place of college football.

All of Saturday’s games are getting plenty of attention from the major online sportsbooks, who are going all out for this year’s NFL playoffs.

The first matchup of the weekend features the 11-5 Indianapolis Colts facing the 13-3 Buffalo Bills.

Wild Card – 1:05 p.m. EST:

  • Indianapolis Colts +255
  • Buffalo Bills -310
  • Spread: BUF -7.0
  • O/U: 51.0

The big storyline heading into this matchup is whether veteran Phillip Rivers can keep up with Josh Allen and the high-powered Bills offense. The Bills are second in the NFL in scoring at 31.3 points per game this year, but the Colts aren’t far behind at 28.2 points per game, good for ninth in the league.

A touchdown spread for the Bills seems like a large number, but the Bills have managed to cover the spread in eight straight games heading into this matchup. However, the Colts have managed to play well on the road this year going 4-1 against the spread in their last five road games.

Additionally, the Colts seem to turn up the offense against high-level competition, with Indy hitting the over in their last five games against a team with a winning record. Finding the best NFL bet for this game will force bettors to choose between the Bills’ firepower on offense or the Colts' ability to stay strong on defense.

Wild Card – 4:40 p.m. EST:

  • Los Angeles Rams +160
  • Seattle Seahawks -180
  • Spread: SEA -3.5
  • O/U: 42.0

The next matchup of the day features two NFC West rivals battling for the third time this season. Bettors should note that the teams split the season series, but Rams’ QB Jared Goff suffered a thumb injury in the loss to Seattle on Dec. 27. That is bad news for an LA team that only scores 23.2 points a game going up against a Seahawks team that ranks top ten in scoring offense.

Coach Sean McVay said that Goff’s status remains uncertain for the game on Saturday, with QB John Wolford likely making his first career playoff start for the Rams.

The Rams do have one of the few elite defenses in the NFL, but bettors are looking at a very appetizing 3.5 point spread towards Seattle at home against an inexperienced quarterback in Woodford. If the Rams hope to make it back to the Super Bowl, they will have to see production from the offense.

Wild Card – 8:15 p.m. EST:

  • Tampa Bay Buccaneers -420
  • Washington Football Team +310
  • Spread: TB -8.5
  • O/U: 45.0

Finally, the nightcap of the opening round heads to Washington, where the Football Team will make their playoff debut as a nameless franchise after winning the NFC East with a losing record.

Their reward? Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Bucs have the third-best scoring offense in the NFL at 30.8 points per game, nearly ten more points a game than the Football Team, which averages 20.9.

On defense, Washington finds its strengths. Names like Jon Allen and Chase Young are as good as it gets on the front lines in the NFL but will have to get the Brady fast before he carves up a rather weak Football Team secondary.

Washington quarterback Alex Smith will be making the start in one of the more remarkable stories of the 2020 season. Smith was close to losing his leg a mere year ago and will now be suiting up in a playoff game in a show of unmeasured strength.

Bettors should note that Washington has hit the under in five straight games. With a line as high as 45, many bettors will be rooting for defense in this decisive showdown.

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