NFL Playoffs: Which Divisional Round Game Has the Biggest Point Spread?
The best weekend of the NFL season is finally here, and we have some fascinating matchups in store for the divisional round of the 2022 playoffs. On Saturday, the Cincinnati Bengals travel to Nashville to take on the Tennessee Titans, and the San Francisco 49ers face off against the Green Bay Packers. Then, on Sunday, the Los Angeles Rams play the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the Buffalo Bills go up against the Kansas City Chiefs.
So, out of all four divisional round matchups this weekend, which one features the largest point spread?
The Chiefs are the shortest favorites of the weekend at -2 over the Bills
The Chiefs are the reigning AFC champions and arguably the best all-around team in the NFL this year, but they’re still the shortest favorites of the weekend at -2 over Josh Allen and the Bills. Part of that spread comes from the first matchup between the two teams earlier this season, when Buffalo rolled into Kansas City and won in blowout fashion as three-point underdogs.
It’ll be a tougher task this time around, though, as Patrick Mahomes is 7-1 at home in his postseason career. His only loss came in overtime against Tom Brady and the eventual Super Bowl champion New England Patriots in 2019.
In the AFC Championship last season, the Chiefs came back from a nine-point deficit to defeat the Bills, 38-24. Mahomes finished with 325 passing yards and three touchdowns in the game, so Buffalo’s defense will have to step up this time around if it wants to pull off the upset.
Tom Brady’s Buccaneers are -2.5 against the Rams
The Rams beat the Bucs by 10 points at home earlier this season, but Brady’s squad is still set as a 2.5-point favorite for this weekend’s rematch.
The problem for Tampa Bay in that first game? Brady led the team in rushing with just 14 yards. Leonard Fournette looks to be on pace to return to the field this weekend, so the Buccaneers will need him to have a decent game to balance out their pass-heavy offense.
LA is poised to be a trendy underdog pick in the divisional round, but do you really want to bet against the GOAT in the playoffs? Give me Tampa Bay laying less than a field goal at home.
The Titans are 3.5-point home favorites against the Bengals
Akin to the Rams, the Bengals figure to be popular underdog picks in their divisional round matchup against the Titans. Joe Burrow has been playing excellent football of late, and he’s been in high-pressure situations before dating back to his days at LSU.
But Derrick Henry is on pace to return this weekend from his foot injury, and Cincinnati has allowed the seventh-most rushing yards per game this season. Expect Tennessee to pound the rock on offense and limit Burrow’s big plays on defense, and it should be able to cover the 3.5-point spread here.
Packers -5.5 over the 49ers is the biggest point spread of the divisional round
The 49ers upset the Dallas Cowboys as 3-point underdogs in the first round of the playoffs, but oddsmakers aren’t giving them much respect in the divisional round. The Packers currently stand as 5.5-point favorites on their home field, which is the biggest spread of the weekend by two whole points.
These two teams played back in September, with Green Bay squeaking by, 30-28. San Francisco finished with just 67 rushing yards in the game, but Elijah Mitchell wasn’t active for the game, and Deebo Samuel wasn’t the dangerous, dual-threat weapon he is now.
The 49ers are simply playing with too much confidence and swagger right now to be this big of an underdog on Saturday. Take the points in this one.
All betting odds courtesy of DraftKings as of 1/20.
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