The NFL Wild Card weekend is here with three days of exciting playoff games.
Last season, the number of 4-2 S / U in the wild card round was lower. Where will the uproar come from this season? Will the Raiders continue their Cinderella in Cincinnati? Joe Burrow will try to lead the Bengals to their first post-season victory since the playoffs in 1990.
A pair of divisional rubber matches should be interesting. New England travels to Buffalo and Arizona meets Los Angeles on the way.
As San Francisco travels to Dallas, the classic NFC rivalry resumes and Pittsburgh’s farewell tour of Ben Roethlisberger will have another stop in Kansas City. That leaves Tampa Bay, the Super Bowl defender. Tom Brady tries to start another Super Bowl race against Philadelphia.
It’s a great weekend, for sure. Here are Sporting News tips for the wild card bike.
MORE PLAYOFF NFL:
AFC and NFC holder TV program Selections of wild cards against the spread
NFL playoff selections, predictions for wild card games in 2022
- Las Vegas Raiders v Cincinnati Bengals (-6)
Saturday, 16:35, NBC, Peacock
Burrow’s first start in the playoffs will be the focus, but the Bengals have contented themselves with giving Joe Mixon 30 passes in a 123-yard base and two TDs. The Raiders have since tightened their running defenses and have the confidence that comes with winning four matches with one score in a row. Cincinnati has lost the last seven games of the playoffs. Burrow ends the series with a late connection to Ja’Marr Chase, but it’s not easy.
Choice: Bengals 31, Raiders 28
- New England Patriots v Buffalo Bills (-4.5)
Saturday, 20:15, CBS, Paramount +
Josh Allen went through 314 yards and three TDs in the second match between those teams. The road team has won every basic game and the intrigue surrounding Bill Belichick, who leads the next round of the playoffs, is there. Rookie Mac Jones will also start in the playoffs for the first time. It’s a battle between the two best scoring defenses in the NFL and the forecast reports snow. The temptation to upset the Patriots is here, but Buffalo passes.
Choice: Bills 26, Patriots 20
- Philadelphia Eagles v Tampa Bay Buccaneers (-8.5)
Sunday, 1 p.m., FOX
The Eagles were impressive with the Jalen Hurts, but that’s a big requirement on the road. Tom Brady and the Buccaneers have placed the drama around Antonio Brown’s release in the rearview mirror. Tampa Bay will have to generate a running game to make the Eagles’ defense fair, but Brady will team up with Rob Gronkowski for a couple of TDs. It is likely that the tandem remembers Super Bowl LII.
Choice: Buccaneers 31, Eagles 21
MORE: SN predicts the entire NFL 2022 playoff group
- San Francisco 49ers v Dallas Cowboys (-3)
Sunday, 4:30 p.m., CBS, Paramount +, Nickelodeon
The Cowboys have the highest statistical attack in the NFL. Dak Prescott has a game maker to work with, and Micah Parsons has been dominant all season. So what’s the problem? San Francisco responds well and the 49ers are healthy. Jimmy Garoppolo will be supported by a strong running game and the defense led by Nick Bosa will cause several turns. San Francisco is pushing for another classic match against the Packers in the divisional round.
Choice: 49ers 28, Cowboys 26
- Pittsburgh Steelers v Kansas City Chiefs (-8.5)
Sunday, 20:15, NBC
The Steelers have gathered in the post-season and will have nothing to lose behind Ben Roethlisberger, who scores 13-9 in the post-season. However, Patrick Mahomes II is at home and this is the same Chiefs team that defeated the Steelers 36-10 in week 16. This time it’s closer, but the Chiefs are moving on.
Choice: Chiefs 35, Steelers 20
- Arizona Cardinals v Los Angeles Rams (-4)
Monday, 20:15, ESPN, ABC, ESPN2
The Cardinals have led 1: 4 in the last five games and allowed 30 points per game in four losses. The Rams have won NFC West and this is Matthew Stafford’s chance to play the Super Bowl. The Rams have won nine of their last 10 matches. Despite all this, Kyler Murray almost shook the image of the NFC playoffs when he led the Cardinals to victory.
Choice: Cardinals 33, Rams 30