NFC Divisional NotesAFC Divisional Notes
Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018
Atlanta at Philadelphia (FOX, 4:35 p.m. ET)
Line Movement: The Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook sent out Atlanta as a 2 ½-point road favorite over Philadelphia, the No. 1 seed in the NFC. As Micah Roberts reported in his Wild Card Betting Recap, the books have made a major adjustment to Eagles backup quarterback Nick Foles.
All of the sportsbooks make a big mistake with their opening total, which was posted anywhere from 43 ½ to 44 ½. As of Sunday night, that number is down to 41 ½ across all outfits.
Atlanta Road Record: 6-3 SU, 3-6 ATS
Philadelphia Home Record: 7-1 SU, 5-3 ATS
Head-to-Head: The Eagles captured a 24-15 win over the Falcons in last year’s regular season as one-point favorites. Prior to that win, Atlanta had won three in a row against Philadelphia between 2011 and 2015 but two of the victories came by two and four points. These teams met in the 2004 NFC Championship and Philadelphia posted a 27-10 home win over Atlanta and then quarterback Michael Vick.
Playoff Notes: The Falcons improved to 4-5 in the playoffs under QB Matt Ryan after last Saturday’s 26-13 win at the Los Angeles Rams. The road victory was the first for Atlanta in the playoffs since 2003. The franchise was on a four-game losing skid and that doesn’t include last year’s loss in the Super Bowl to New England. Philadelphia has dropped its last four games in the playoffs, the most recent setback coming in 2014 when New Orleans defeated the Eagles 26-24 on the road. The Eagles are 1-2 in their last three postseason games at home and all of them were close calls, being decided by five points or less.
Total Notes: Atlanta owns the best ‘under’ mark (12-5) in the NFL and that includes a 6-3 record away from home. Including Saturday’s ‘under’ result against the Rams, the Falcons have seen their last six games lean to the low side. The defense has allowed 18.2 PPG in eight games against playoff teams this season, which has helped the ‘under’ go 8-0. Philadelphia saw the ‘under’ go 8-7-1 this season, which includes a 5-3 record at Lincoln Financial Field. The Eagles were ranked second in scoring defense at home, surrendering just 13.4 points per game.
Sunday, Jan. 14, 2018
New Orleans at Minnesota (FOX, 4:40 p.m. ET)
Line Movement: The Vikings were installed as 3 ½-point home favorites over the Saints and that number was nudged up to -4 at [...]. The total also was pushed from 44 ½ up to 45 at the global outfit.
New Orleans Road Record: 4-4 SU, 4-4 ATS
Minnesota Home Record: 7-1 SU, 6-1-1 ATS
Head-to-Head: This playoff game is also a rematch from this year’s regular season as the Vikings and Saints met in the Monday Night Football opener on Week 1. In that contest, Minnesota looked very impressive as it notched a 29-19 win over New Orleans as a three-point home favorite. The Vikings outgained the Saints (470-344) behind then starting QB Sam Bradford (346 yards, 3 TDs). Both teams left a ton of points off the board as they combined for 11 scores, but seven of them were field goals. Prior to this encounter, New Orleans has won four straight meetings against Minnesota between 2010 and 2014.
Playoff Notes: The Saints improved to 7-4 in the playoffs after Sunday’s 31-26 home win over Carolina. A lot of the success during this span has come at home (5-0) and not on the road (1-4). The other outcome occurred in Super Bowl XLIV when the Saints defeated the Colts, 31-17. Minnesota hasn’t won a playoff game since 2010 when it blasted Dallas 34-3 at the old Metrodome. In the 2015 postseason, the club had a chance to get a victory but a late missed field goal cost them in a 10-9 home loss to Seattle. In the 2009 playoffs, New Orleans defeated Minnesota 31-28 in the NFC Championship before eventually winning the Super Bowl. The Vikings had a great shot to win the game but a careless Brett Favre interception late in the fourth quarter cost the team dearly.
Total Notes: The Week 1 meeting had a closing total of 47 ½ and the game went ‘over.’ This week’s number will likely be the lowest total in a game for New Orleans this season. The Vikings saw the ‘under’ go 9-7 this season and that includes a 5-3 record to the low side at home. The Vikings were ranked first in scoring defense (15.8 PPG) and that number was even better (12.5 PPG) at U.S. Bank Stadium. New Orleans has watched the ‘over’ go 10-7 this season. On the road, the Saints were 5-4 to the ‘over’ despite their defense (18.2 PPG) posting better numbers as visitors. The Saints have seen the ‘over’ go 8-3 in playoff games with Brees under center. The club has averaged 25.6 PPG in six games outside of the Superdome during this span. Minnesota has watched seven of its last eight playoff games go ‘under’ the total.
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