NFL Picks for Divisional Round are here — OUR FIRST PERFECT WEEK! 100% ACCURACY!
WILD CARD WEEK SUMMARY
DING DING DING! We hit it, boys! ONE HUNDRED PERCENT ACCURACY!
It seems fitting that, after an absolute tragedy of a week, we find ourselves back on the horse! We got nearly 50% profit over our inputs, due to a relatively "sane" week around the League, with no major injuries to key players with immediate impact to the games being played. And, of course, less games being played, which means less opportunity for instability to come crashing down on us.
We have a much tougher week ahead of us, but let's hope we can keep our heads above the water.
After the SuperBowl, I'll bring the full breakdown of what happened during the season, with % of correct picks and money balance.
PICKS: 6 out of 6 (100% accuracy)
BALANCE: $60 placed - $88.2 as return = PROFIT $28.2
How about the game against the market in the NFL PREDICTION GAME?
We got them too! I've made a couple of minor adjustments during the week up until the games kicked off, especially the last one. As it's becoming clearer and clearer: beating the market is not about getting the winners right; it's about shortening certainty given expected values and variances, as perceived by the "user/player". It's surely good advice to keep in mind come next season. As you can see, in the market game, I picked DAL to win the game (although my money was on SF). I fully realized the Cowboys potential to come out as winner, I just thought SF would have a little more on their stack of "potential", so I hedged my losses in case SF didn't come out on top. With the Rams, I adopted a different approach (picked them anyway) given the fact that they were the favorites.
You'll see my "confidence sliders" for this week at the end of the post. Should we have any important adjustments between the time of the post and the start of the game, there will be a new post updating the situation.
Again, all picks are linked with a virtual $10 bet in each of them, and odds according to Betfair.com.
DISCLAIMER: I'm not sponsored by Betfair.com in any way. This will only be added as a reference to win probability in each game. It's all for fun!
CIN @ TEN - Winner: CIN (Odds: 2.4)
What could go wrong: the Titans being absolutely unstoppable on offense. TEN has been a team that's very hard to predict this season, especially on offense. They would have this amazing game one week and can't find their rhythm at all in the next one. Derrick Henry is back, which is definitely good news, but we're not exactly sure by how much he rushed his treatment and recovery and what exactly is his condition. There's surely a lot between being "fit to play" and "MVP contender form". Julio and AJ Brown are sure to start as well, giving Tannehill all his favorite weapons, just for a change. Regardless of what has been said above, the capacity of this Bengals team to create explosive plays allows them to get back in a game should they fall behind at the beginning. I don't really see the same TEN wielding the same power and, since any given game can start 14-0 for either side, I'm going with the team with more capability to make a comeback.
SF @ GB - Winner: GB (Odds: 1.35)
What could go wrong: Jimmy G having the game of his life, with a bad hand and shoulder, on a cold day. Expected weather: around 0F - MINUS 17ºC, maybe some snow!!! Niners' run game is, undoubtedly, their biggest strength and focal point this season. But if you're gonna travel to Lambeau to face the (likely) MVP, you're gonna need a ton of points. Add to that the fact that we're not sure Nick Bosa is going to be able to recover from the injury he suffered last week. On top of that, GB will get the old faithful David Bakhtiari back on the OL, which means some extra comfort for Rodgers. I'm taking the heavy favorites in this one. If I'm Kyle Shanahan, I'm designing a game plan that keeps Rodgers on the sideline for as long as humanly possible. But again, he's gonna get on the field at some point — more than once, by the way, and I do not see how SF can play this game with GB for four quarters and come out on top.
LAR @ TB - Winner: LAR (Odds: 2.15)
What could go wrong: Stafford going back to his old ways AND Rams pass rush being uneffective. We grew accustomed to see Brady executing a different approach to his distribution when he faces teams with good pass rush. He gets rid of the ball and checks the ball down more frequently in those situations to negate — and frustrate — the rushers. It's absolutely possible that TB decides to play that game again. LAR answer to that would be to deny short yardage on 3rd down, which would force Brady to hold the ball for a little longer. One of his nemesis in 2015, Von Miller, will be on the other side of the trenches and, of course, so will Aaron Donald be. Rams are facing a much less disciplined and less sharp defensive unit than the one Tampa had last year. Also, weather should not be a problem. Last week, Brady and Co. faced a much less capable defense in the Eagles. I think this Rams team is capable of limiting the production of Evans and Gronk on long plays, especially if Jalen Ramsey stays focused for the entire game. On the offensive side, we've seen last week what Stafford is capable of when he's not trying to get all the yards on one play. Here's to hoping he understood the lesson, so we can hit big on another underdog.
BUF @ KC - Winner: KC (Odds: 1.7)
What could go wrong: KC not having the ball last. Yeah boys, that's it: that's what I think things are gonna come down to. There's absolutely no way to predict a blowout in this game. Reason being, both those teams are perfectly capable of scoring 20 pts in a quarter. Players nerves will probably flare up a bit and Q1 might be key in deciding this game and costly turnovers might make players and coaches overreact on what to select/avoid as offensive calls. This has all the looks of a nail-biter until the last drive and, of course, this game could go either way. Pound por pound, I think BUF has the better team, specifically considering both defenses. But I'm picking the home team, taking into account they'll have Arrowhead screaming at the top of their lungs, which might mess things up when Josh Allen is under center. In a game like this, every 1% matters. And no defense is good enough to say they can shut Mahomes out at will.
How I feel about the Prediction Game Slider this week?
SUBJECT TO MINOR ADJUSTMENTS DURING THE REST OF THE WEEK
If anything rash happens, I'll update with a new post.
AS YOU CAN SEE BY THE NUMBERS NEAR THE SLIDERS, DIVISIONAL PICKS ARE WORTH TRIPLE!!!
Well, that's it for this week.
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