The NFL postseason rolls on to the divisional round, and so far we've been cruising. After a strong 32-16 ATS record to cap off the final three weeks of the regular season, I was able to go 5-1 ATS during Super Wild Card Weekend with the only loss coming via the Dallas Cowboys getting absolutely smoked by the Green Bay Packers. I was also 4-2 on the moneyline with the other straight-up defeat coming via the Lions as I had the Rams pulling off the upset on top of covering the spread. 

All in all, it was a great start to the playoffs and I'll look to keep the momentum moving in the right direction in the divisional round where the No. 1 seeds now enter the equation. 

2023 record


Regular season
Locks of the Week ATS
: 45-45-1
ATS: 145-116-11
ML: 174-98

All NFL odds via SportsLine consensus odds.

Texans at Ravens

  • Saturday, 4:30 p.m. ET (ESPN/ABC, fubo)

As much as I've loved watching C.J. Stroud this season, his ascent as one of the best rookie quarterbacks we've ever seen is making the Ravens a little underrated in my opinion. He'll now face arguably the toughest test of his young career going against this Baltimore defense. The unit ranks first in the league in fewest points per game allowed, total sacks and is tied for the most takeaways. The Ravens are also tied for the fewest yards per play allowed, are stellar on third down, and had the second-lowest red zone touchdown rate in the league with opponents finding the end zone on just 40.8% of their trips in the red area. Yes, Lamar Jackson's previous playoff history is a bit of a concern, but I'm willing to ignore that given how well he's been playing this season. He's also been favorable to bettors, covering in five of his last six starts. Jackson may also get star tight end Mark Andrews back for this game, adding to their collection of pass-catching weapons.

Projected score: Ravens 30, Texans 20
The pick: Ravens -9.5

If you want a more analytical approach to your NFL picks, then I highly suggest that you check out the SportsLine Projection Model, which has been on fire this year. Check it out if you want to know which side to bet for every game in the divisional round.

Packers at 49ers

  • Saturday, 8:15 p.m. ET (Fox, fubo)

I bet against Jordan Love last week and the Packers QB burned me big time. I put more faith in the Cowboys prowess at home than I should have and we've now corrected that. Love has been fantastic in the second half of the season and his talents were on full display in Dallas last week, making pinpoint passes and off-platform throws at every turn. Over the last nine games, he's thrown 21 touchdowns and has just one interception. Sensational. With a quarterback playing that well and catching 10 points, it's a near must-bet. I do believe the Niners, fresh off of a first-round bye, will pull out the win, but it'll be within double digits. Believe it or not, this 49ers defense has been a bit shaky at home this year, allowing opponents to score touchdowns on 65.2% of their red zone trips, ranking eighth-worst in the league. While they are still holding opponents to under 20 points at home, they're giving up a full field goal more per game at home than on the road this year as well. 

Projected score: 49ers 30, Packers 21
The pick: Packers +10

Buccaneers at Lions

  • Sunday, 3 p.m. ET (NBC, fubo)

Cards on the table, this is the game I'm least confident in. I'm laying the six-point spread with the Lions, but bettors should proceed with caution as the Bucs were the best road team in the NFL this season, owning an 8-1 ATS record. However, my gut says that Detroit rolls in this spot. The Lions got the monkey off of their back, earning their first playoff victory since 1991 and doing so in an emotional back-and-forth against Matthew Stafford. The Lions defense was stellar in the red zone in that winning effort, not allowing the Rams to score a touchdown on any of their three red zone trips. And there's reason to believe that'll continue here against Tampa Bay after the Bucs were the third-worst red zone offense in the league this year, scoring touchdowns on just 44.9% of their trips. Going on the road in what is likely going to be a bonkers environment at Ford Field and facing a highly motivated team in the Lions is effectively the polar opposite of what the Buccaneers faced this past week at home against Philadelphia, and I believe that will be extremely apparent. 

Projected score: Lions 30, Buccaneers 17
The pick: Lions -6

Chiefs at Bills

I said before the playoffs started that folks are sleeping on the Chiefs and I'm not shying away from that here as they travel to Buffalo to take on the Bills. Andy Reid's team is getting great play from its defense that effectively shut out the high-flying Dolphins outside of a lone deep touchdown to Tyreek Hill in the first half. Offensively, Patrick Mahomes continues to be smart with the football, they are getting a stellar rushing attack from Isiah Pacheco, and the emergence of Rashee Rice could be the biggest X factor of the playoffs in the AFC. They continue to do things that are conducive to playoff success but aren't exactly being looked at with the same terror as former Chiefs teams, which I believe is a mistake. Buffalo has played well down the stretch, but the Bills also let teams hang around a bit. Even though they beat the Steelers by double digits, it was a one-possession game early in the fourth quarter. Sure, Mason Rudolph couldn't fully spring Pittsburgh to a win in that setting, but Mahomes is an entirely different animal even if he is playing on the road for the first time in his playoff career. Also, the issues Buffalo had in the kicking game last week -- a blocked field goal and a missed 27-yarder by Tyler Bass -- are also on my radar. I think K.C. guts out a close win and advances to the AFC Championship. 

Projected score: Chiefs 27, Bills 24
The pick: Chiefs +2.5