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Football Betting – NFL Playoffs Reach Divisional Round
The astute NFL betting was done on the New York Giants last weekend, as they upset the favored Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the road to advance to the Divisional Round of the playoffs. Eli Manning went an efficient 20-of-27 for 185 yards passing in that contest, with a pair of touchdowns and no picks to silence his critics (for the time being).
However, the Giants are still viewed as the least likely team to win the Super Bowl this season. New York’s odds to win the big game are at just +2800, while their line for winning the NFC Championship is at +700. The Giants could improve on those odds if they could pull off a second consecutive upset – this time over the rival Dallas Cowboys.
Tied with the Giants at both +2800 and +700 are the Seattle Seahawks, who knocked off the Washington Redskins 35-14 at home last week thanks to a fourth-quarter surge. Seattle led that game 13-0 heading into the final frame, gave up two quick TDs in the fourth, and then scored three straight times to advance to play the Green Bay Packers.
Matt Hasselbeck will be looking to turn in a better performance against Brett Favre and company – he went just 20-of-32 for 229 yards passing against Washington, with one touchdown and two interceptions. Seattle’s running game wasn’t that great versus the Redskins either – Shaun Alexander had just 46 yards rushing on 15 carries in the win.
The Packers will host the Seahawks at Lambeau Field this weekend, and they’re pegged at +1000 odds to win this year’s Super Bowl (and at +200 odds to win the conference championship). That still puts them behind the favored Cowboys, who are at -130 to win the conference and +600 to go all the way and win this season’s big game.
Dallas is currently pegged as a 7-point favorite over New York on the Top Sportsbooks NFL lines, with the game’s total at 47 points. Green Bay is an 8-point favorite, with a total of 42.5.
Over in the AFC both the Jacksonville Jaguars and the San Diego Chargers picked up victories on Wild Card Weekend and they’ll take on the New England Patriots and the Indianapolis Colts, respectively, this week. Both will have to win as underdogs though – the Pats are favored by 13 (with a total of 48) and the Colts are favored by 9 (total 46.5).
Jacksonville at least is coming off a road victory; they knocked off the Pittsburgh Steelers 31-29 at Heinz Field in the first round. David Garrard went just 9-of-21 for 140 yards passing on the day (with one TD and two INTs), but Maurice Jones-Drew and Fred Taylor each found their way into the end zone as the Jaguars held on for the win.
The Jaguars, though, would need to pull off a huge upset over the Pats to improve on their championship odds – they’re at +1200 to win the Super Bowl, and at +750 to win the AFC. Those are slightly better odds than the ones owned by the Chargers, who have been pegged at +1400 to win the Super Bowl and at +1000 to take home the AFC.
San Diego finally got a playoff victory under its belt by beating the Tennessee Titans 17-6 on the weekend. That win didn’t come easily, however, as the Titans held a 6-0 lead at halftime and the Chargers had to battle back over the final two quarters. Philip Rivers went 19-of-30 for 292 yards passing on the day, with one TD and one INT, while LaDainian Tomlinson was held to just 42 yards rushing (and a score) on his 21 carries.
The Chargers will now try to top the defending champions, who are listed at +500 odds to win the Super Bowl for a second straight season. Indianapolis is also at +350 odds to win the AFC. The favorites, though, are still the Patriots, who are at -230 to win the conference and -160 to win it all; that status won’t change until someone defeats them.
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