Every year under the current NFL playoff format, at least four teams made the postseason that didn’t the previous year. That streak continued in 2018 with a bang as a whopping seven new teams will compete for the Super Bowl: the Baltimore Ravens, Chicago Bears, Dallas Cowboys, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Los Angeles Chargers and Seattle Seahawks.
Odds courtesy of OddsShark.com
Just a reminder that in this weekend’s wild card round, the division-winning third seed in each conference hosts the No. 6, and the division-winning fourth seed hosts the No. 5. The top two seeds in each conference are on the bye.
The first game of the weekend is Saturday afternoon and an all-AFC South affair as the No. 6 Colts visit the No. 3 Texans, who are 1-point favorites. The teams split two very entertaining games during the regular season, each winning by a field goal on the road. Indianapolis has covered three of the past four overall in the series. A Colts upset would send them to Kansas City. Houston would visit New England with a victory.
On Saturday night, the No. 5 Seahawks visit the No. 4 Cowboys in the NFC. Dallas returning to the playoffs likely saved coach Jason Garrett’s job – although some believe that a loss in this game could still cost Garrett his position. Dallas is a 1.5-point favorite and enters having won seven of eight, covering in six.
The first game Sunday is the No. 5 Chargers at the No. 4 Ravens, who are -2.5. These teams just played in Week 16 and Baltimore won in Los Angeles 22-10 thanks to a dominant defensive performance. The Chargers tied for the AFC’s best record at 12-4 but lost a tiebreaker to the Chiefs and thus were relegated to wild card status. Maybe it’s a good thing that the Bolts are on the road as they have won their past six away from home by an average of more than 10 points per games.
Finally, the weekend concludes with the No. 6 Philadelphia Eagles beginning the official defense of their Super Bowl title at the No. 3 Bears, who are in the postseason for the first time in eight years. Had Chicago not won at the Minnesota Vikings in Week 17, the Eagles wouldn’t even be in the postseason. The Bears are -6 and have won and covered their past five at Soldier Field.