It’s playoff time!! The moment 14 fan bases have been waiting for all year. So with this magical time finally here, the team at Rahl Reviews has decided to give you some winners. Each of the guys will discuss their picks ATS and/or choose a winner. By the end of these playoffs, all of us will be laughing to the cashier. Let’s go win some damn units!
#5 Las Vegas Raiders @ #6 Cincinnati Bengals (-5.5)
Brock – I think this line is a bit skewed because of the Bengals 32-13 victory over the Raiders in November. Las Vegas closed out their season with 4 consecutive wins by 4 points or fewer. Cincinnati is 4-5 in one-score games. I’ll take the points with the team that has been coming up clutch over the team who hasn’t won a playoff game in 31 years. Raiders +5.5
Tanner – The Bengals are a team I don’t want to see in the playoffs, alongside the Chiefs. They’re a group of young, athletic guys on offense who can easily put up 28+ a game. The Raiders are well put together on both sides of the ball, which makes for an interesting game late. Raiders could get a late touchdown and make this a field goal game, but give me some the Bengals -5.5
Shane – Two teams who desperately need a playoff win. Bengals will have that bit of finesse and finish to crush the Raiders luck finally, 34-31. Raiders +5.5
Matt – Cincy is arguably one of the hotter offenses coming into the playoffs. Huge wins over Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Kansas City showed that they’re someone to be scared of. Yet, Las Vegas has won 4 straight against teams who were all fighting for a playoff spot at the time of their matchup. They only allowed 21+ points once over that time period. I think that there will be some hiccups to begin this game for Cincinnati, so I think it will be closer than a lot peoples initial reaction. Joe Burrow will lead this team back in a close game for the win. Solidifying the fans that he is one of the top up and coming QBs in the league. Raiders +5.5
Jeff – This is a fairly even matchup and will be a fantastic game to kick off the Super Wildcard Weekend. Both teams can get hot when needed. However, the Raiders completed their season destiny by getting the Steelers into the playoffs. Their run will come to an end with Joey Brrrrr running the show against their defense. Give me the Bengals ML
#6 New England Patriots @ #3 Buffalo Bills (-4)
Brock – The trends point to NE, divisional road dog, Belichick ATS vs BUF, etc. Mac Jones won in Buffalo this season, while throwing only 3 passes. That won’t fly again for the rookie in a hostile playoff atmosphere. I’m gonna make Jones prove it. Buffalo Bills -4
Tanner – These are two teams that can be deadly in the playoffs. You have a Bills team that won the division and a Patriots team that was able to do well this season against all odds. I see the Bills hitting the lab and figuring out what they’ve done wrong in past playoff matchups. Give me the Bills in a defensive game. Bills -4
Shane – No clue really. Plus I’m torn because I’m a Pats fan. Bills are looking like a solid team right now so I think they will win, but I’m still going to ride with my boys to cover the spread. Patriots +4
Matt – NE had this run in the middle of the season that had everyone telling themselves, “Belichick really is a genius.” Mac Jones looked serviceable and the defense was back to being a difference maker. This last game in Buffalo was a complete disgrace for the Bills. It really showed the flaws in this offense, and the defensive weakness to be beat at the line of scrimmage. I don’t believe this will be the case this time around. Buffalo will do whatever it takes to stop the run and trust the talent on the outside to win. Buffalo was a favorite to win the AFC early in the season, and I think they might be the best value in the AFC. Buffalo wins and covers -4.
Jeff – Patriots do show a lot of promise and Mac Jones is nobody to sleep on but I have the Bills finally pulling it together and Josh Allen dialing back in and playing like the MVP he was supposed to be this season. Give me the Bills ML
#7 Philadelphia Eagles @ #2 Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-8.5)
Brock – This is just a nightmare of a matchup for the Eagles. Philadelphia’s recent success has been a product of their run game and playing subpar QBs. Tampa’s run defense should hold, and the Eagles will have trouble once they get down. Bucs win and cover -8.5
Tanner – If there was ever a team to give Brady an issue in the postseason outside of the Giants, it’s the Eagles. This Eagles defense is gritty and will do everything to keep Brady at bay until it matters most. Give me Brady and the Bucs in a close one. Eagles +8.5
Shane – Tom Brady in the playoffs is the sweetest sex any human can watch. For real though, Tom Brady and the playoffs is peanut butter and cocaine. Buccaneers murder for the win and cover -8.5.
Matt – We have Tom Brady in the playoffs. What more can you say? He will also get a healthy Fournette back for this game. Oh and btw the Bucs are 3rd best against the run. In my humblest of opinions, I don’t think Hurts is a very good QB. I don’t think he will be prepared for what he is about to see, feel, and try to overcome. I would be nervous about a back door cover late, but I love Tampa Bay in this game. Tampa Bay wins and covers -8.5.
Jeff – Tom Brady. I’m not riding his d**k, but I’m also not stupid. I’ll take the Bucs ML
#6 San Francisco 49ers @ #3 Dallas Cowboys (-3.5)
Brock – Many reasons to back the Niners. Teams are trending in opposite directions. Shanahan has the 2nd best record as underdog since 2019 (min. 15 games). SF also has a big edge in the run game. SF covers +3.5
Tanner – I’m staying the hell away from this game when it comes to betting, and that’s because I believe these two teams are equally matched. A well coached offensive squad in San Fran against a well coached defensive squad in Dallas. I think the defense of the Cowboys will somehow get a turnover late in the game to secure what could have been a late tying drive by Jimmy G. I’ll take the Cowboys. Cowboys -3.5.
Shane – Both teams could easily blow this game at any point and both teams could easily make a deep run at the same time. I’m leaning Cowboys. Let’s ride Cowboys ML!
Matt – This has to be the scariest matchup for Dallas. San Francisco has a running game that can keep the Cowboys offense on the sideline, a play style that has tons of misdirections to confuse opponents, as well as a WR in Deebo that will be able to take advantage of Diggs in 1v1 situations. Cowboys have been a solid team all year, but I deep down don’t think McCarthy will get this team ready for what Shanahan will throw at them. Give me the underdogs in this one. SF ML, and cover the +3.5 in the process.
Jeff – Another pretty even matchup this weekend. 49ers have been hot, but Dallas has a D and offensive
weapons that when playing at potential can make a deep run in these playoffs. Give me the Cowboys ML
#7 Pittsburgh Steelers @ #2 Kansas City Chiefs (-12.5)
Brock – Simply put, I think the Steelers are gassed. Over the past 4 weeks they have expended a ton of energy just to get into the playoffs, and a ton of emotion with Ben’s farewell game at Heinz Field. These teams met in Week 16 and the result was a 36-10 Chiefs victory. I’m expecting a similar outcome here. Chiefs ML, and cover -12.5.
Tanner – The game of the underdog, if there were one. The Steelers come into these playoffs by the skin of their teeth and suffered a 36–10 loss to this team not long ago. But this is Big Ben’s final run and if this isn’t a perfect example of what the Steelers do, I don’t know what is. It’s going to be close, favoring in all the emotions, so I’d take the spread on this one early, but I’d avoid that Moneyline because these Chiefs mean business now that their defense is more consistent. Give me the Chiefs in a dog fight, with the Steelers playing in dramatic fashion late.
Shane – Could sneakily be an upset because of how dominant the Steelers defense can be. Chiefs weather the storm and push through and bag the Steelers. Chiefs ML, and cover -12.5.
Matt – Pittsburgh looks like a team who should get thrashed in this game. I mean, they have been out scored 40-6 in their last 7 first quarters. That stat is crucial to me because in order for this team to even have a chance, they will need to keep this a close game going into half time. Their game plan works best when they can run the ball. Watt will play more snaps this game than the last time they played KC so that helps. Also, shouldn’t destiny factor in at some point? I don’t think Pittsburgh will let Ben go out in a blowout loss. Kansas City wins the game, but Pittsburgh covers +12.5.
Jeff – I am biased, I am stupid (regardless of what I said earlier), and I do not care. Let’s get 7 with number 7 and have one of the best underdog last dance 30 for 30s we can ask for in the future. If you want a logical reason, it’s that the Steelers can get whooped (or tie) the worst team in the league but blow out the champs any given year. Prepare for them to rally behind Ben. Steelers ML
#5 Arizona Cardinals @ #4 LA Rams (-4)
Brock – On Nov. 1, this looked like a potential NFC Championship matchup. Both teams have somewhat fallen from grace. This is a divisional rivalry, and is the 3rd meeting between these teams this season. Take the points. Arizona Cardinals +4
Tanner – These two teams have met twice and split, but one thing the Rams didn’t have was Cam Akers. With his presence, the Rams are now one of the hardest teams to game plan for going into the first set of playoff games. Give me the Rams in a shootout. Arizona +4
Shane – The ‘shine’ game since both teams are the young, fast and sexy style the NFL is trying to flirt with. Stafford in the playoffs, alongside a decent defense should make a splash. Rams win a close one but Arizona covers +4
Matt– I sit back and wonder if either team is happy with this matchup. Each team won one of the matchups by a TD or better last go arounds. Surprisingly, though, it was the road team who pulled out the victory. Arizona is coming in losing 4 of their last 5 games. LA is the complete opposite, going winning 4 of their last 5. LA has looked extremely rough at times with the turnovers. It’s a lot harder to win in the playoffs with that negative turnover ratio, but I think Stafford is coming in hungry. This is the best chance he has ever had to make an actual impact in the playoffs. You could argue it’s the only thing he needs for his Hall of Fame resume. This might be dangerous, but I like LA ML, and cover -4
Jeff – These two teams both have shown potential that they could take the Lombardi to the NFC when the season is over. I feel the loss of DHop is a big enough blow on offense to allow for Stafford and his elite receiving core to take the cake. Should be a great MNF game to finish off the weekend slate. Give me Rams ML in a close one