2018 NFL Divisional Playoff Picks
By the Football Garbage Time StaffIf you followed last year, you won over 60% of your picks, and we aim to do even better this year.
And if you’ve been following us, you know that we here at Football Garbage Time have gone head to head against Wally, Will and Ray at Urban Sports Scene on our NFL Picks for the last 3 seasons. Why? Because they’re awesome competitors, they KNOW their sports, and, heck, they’re just good guys! But this year we’ll have their picks up right HERE each and every week, so keep it tuned in, to both us and them, because we’ll be picking all season all long.
Without further to do, here we go:
Divisional Playoff Games
Ha Kung Wong’s Picks
Ha Kung’s Thoughts:
Last year I ended up with a 62% record for the season, so that’s three years in a row with over a 60% pick rate. I had a 50/50 Wild Card Weekend, getting me to 169-89 (65.5%). And I intend to keep you at 62%+, as well as keep you ahead of Ryan.
So far this season I’m 16 for 18 on Locks of the Week and 10 for 18 for Upsets of the Week. Let’s see what I can do for you for the Divisional Playoffs…
Lock of the Week => New Orleans Saints (-8.0) over Philadelphia Eagles
Interestingly, both the Saints and Eagles defenses have been fairly similar, with the Saints 11th overall and the Eagles 15th overall. The problem for the Eagles is that the Saints have a much more effective and well-rounded offense, as the Saints are 4th overall (3rd passing and 8th rushing) whereas the Eagles are 16th overall (11th passing and 27th rushing). Clearly, the Eagles have no established ground game, and in fact are facing the 3rd best run defense in the NFL. So that just leaves the entire thing on Nick Foles’ shoulders. Do I believe he’s magic? After the ridiculousness last week against the Bears, sure. But do I think he’s a good QB? No, I definitely do not. And the Saints are monsters at home. Brees has a passer rating of 125.6 at home vs. 98.9 away, and he’s thrown twice as many TDs at home (22) than on the road. This may be one of Drew Brees’ final shots at a Super Bowl, and I don’t think any amount of Foles Magic is going to stop that.
Upset of the Week => Indianapolis Colts (+5.5) over Kansas City Chiefs
I actually think that the Chiefs will win a shootout with the Colts, but if you want an upset, I think this is the most likely. Both defenses are susceptible to big plays and both offenses are operating at a very high level. Maybe the fact that Patrick Mahomes hasn’t had any post-season experience, or much experience at all, will impact him. But he’s at home and threw a record 50 TDs this year so far. I don’t see them slowing down this train, but Andrew Luck has been just as hot in recent weeks. The Colts have a slightly better defense and a new found star in Marlon Mack in the backfield, so they have a shot in Arrowhead. I don’t mind you taking a shot at this upset as well, as I think it’s the most likely to happen.
Joanne Kong’s Picks
Ryan Whitfield’s Picks
Follow me on Twitter – @RyanWhitfieldNE
Scott King’s Picks
I’m shocked that I was able to pull off a 3-1 record on wildcard weekend. I could have gone either way and the results mirrored that concern. This week is interesting. There are some very talented, but unproven teams looking to make some noise this year. The favorites never sweep the divisional round so I had to figure out which teams will pull the upset. I’m going with SD, which isn’t much of an upset considering the record and the cowboys. I just don’t trust the Rams and they had some real struggles down the stretch. Again, I could go 0-4 but I don’t expect to do better than 2-2. Tough calls.
*All picks subject to change up to kickoff, please follow @nflfantasy_more for updates.
Chargers / Colts / Rams / Saints
Early warning. I was 0-4 last week. A big fat goose egg. Zippity damn doo dah! The good news is I have nowhere to go but up.
Indianapolis at Kansas City: I believed in the Chiefs before the playoffs in part because I thought Houston would win and the Chiefs could beat them at home. But the Colts won. And Andrew Luck is not only playing great but Marlon Mack gives him a good running game, something he never had when he was good previously. And that Colt defensive front is on a dominant run in the second half of the season. And the Chiefs offense is not as good without Kareem Hunt. And Andy Reid’s playoff record isn’t great. And the Chiefs haven’t won a playoff game at home for 25 years. Not even Patrick Mahomes brilliance can overcome all of that.
Dallas at L.A. Rams: This game looks a lot like Chiefs-Colts. Except the Rams have their stud running back available. So will Sean McVay learn his lesson from last year’s playoff loss and give Todd Gurley the ball to win this game? Nope. Meanwhile even Jason Garrett knows that Ezekiel Elliott is the biggest weapon the Cowboys have. Elliott ran it 26 times and caught 4 passes last week and a similar workload against the Rams overrated defensive line will put Dallas on the path to an NFC Championship game.
L.A. Chargers at New England: Tom Brady vs. that speedy Chargers defense. Can they do it again, come west and win at 1 p.m. like they did last week. L.A. was the first team to do it since the 1994 when the San Diego Chargers won at Pittsburgh at 12:30 p.m. The fact that Chargers were able to win in Baltimore without huge contributions from Melvin Gordon and Austin Ekeler means they are a big chance to win in New England. They will need a big performance from both to pull the upset. I am taking the Patriots but only because they are at home and in the Brady/Belichick era they are a tough nut to crack in Foxboro.
Philadelphia at New Orleans: I am sick of the Nick Foles story. I am sick of the St. Nick headlines. I am sick of hearing about the free agency frenzy around Nick freaking Foles. He’s not that good. They shouldn’t even be here and are because Cody Parkey yet again was a worthless kicker. Please, please, PLEASE New Orleans drive a stake through the Eagles heart so we can get on with our lives and someone can overpay Nick Foles to start for them next year!
Wild Card Playoff Results
Check back next week for our Divisional Playoff results and Conference Championship picks!