Prisco’s NFL divisional spherical playoff picks: Cowboys shock 49ers; Eagles, Chiefs and Payments get scared
What a way to open the NFL playoffs for me last week. It was Super Wild Card Weekend and I was great with my tips. I went 4-0 on my best bets as part of the Pick Six Podcast, went 4-2 on my ATS picks in our CBS Sports Expert Picks and I was straight 6-0.
They don’t call me Playoff Petey for nothing.
So let’s go ahead and rip off another good week with the picks. I can already hear the dogs barking.
Saturday, 4:30 p.m. ET (NBC) | Steam: FuboTV
Featured Game | Kansas City Chiefs vs. Jacksonville Jaguars
The Chiefs beat the Jaguars 27-17 in November, but that was a different Jacksonville team and the game really wasn’t as close as the result. This Jacksonville team struggled offensively, this one didn’t. The Chiefs are becoming a real problem for the Jacksonville defense, which has struggled with pass at times. The Jags don’t hustle the passer as well, which is a huge advantage for Patrick Mahomes. Jacksonville didn’t have a sack when they first met. That’s always an issue against Mahomes. I see the Jaguars scoring against a Chiefs defense that can be beaten as Trevor Lawrence plays well. But I don’t see the Jaguars slowing down the Chiefs’ offense. Look for Mahomes to set up some big numbers that the Jaguars can’t match. The Chiefs will move on to the AFC title game.
Choose: Chiefs 34, jaguars 28
Saturday, 8:15 p.m. ET (Fox) | Steam: FuboTV
Featured Game | Philadelphia Eagles vs. New York Giants
The Giants impressed on offense when they beat the Vikings last week, but this is a much tougher challenge for Daniel Jones and co. The Eagles led the NFL in sacks and have five players who had 10s or more. That’s pressure. The Giants have had a leak on their line at times, which has to be a cause for concern. But offensive coordinator Mike Kafka is doing a good job of planning things for Jones. The Eagles didn’t look good on offense in the regular-season finals against the Giants, who rested players that day. Jalen Hurts was back for this game after missing two, but he wasn’t looking well. The extra time will help in terms of his health. Keep an eye out for the Eagles attacking through the air here, but the Giants have come alive on the defensive front. Without Lane Johnson, that could be a problem for the Eagles. Still, look for Philadelphia to pull it out and advance to the NFC Championship game.
Choose: Eagle 30, giant 28
Sunday, 3 p.m. ET (CBS) | Electricity: Paramount+ (click here)
Featured Game | Buffalo Bills vs. Cincinnati Bengals
This is the game of the weekend if you love the quarterback game. Joe Burrow vs Josh Allen. We thought we would see this game in week 17 but the game was canceled after Damar Hamlin went into cardiac arrest. That was the right thing to do, but that’s also why this game is in Buffalo. If the Bengals had won that game and led early, that contest would have been played in Cincinnati. As it is, it is in Buffalo. Neither team looked great against backup quarterbacks last week and both struggled to progress. I think both will play better here. The Bengals are struggling with the offensive line with three starters potentially out, but the Bills weren’t exactly all that good at attacking the passer against Miami last week, and Burrow is quick to get the ball out. This should be a shootout with both quarterbacks having big days. In the end, I think it will be Allen and the Bills who will win it in the fourth quarter.
Choose: Bills 34, Bengal 30
Sunday, 6:30 p.m. ET (Fox) | Steam: FuboTV
Featured Game | San Francisco 49ers vs. Dallas Cowboys
The 49ers beat the Cowboys in place in last year’s playoffs, so this will be a chance for the Cowboys to even things out. Dallas beat Tampa Bay on Monday night, so this is another away game in a short week that will challenge them. The 49ers actually have an extra day off since they played last Saturday. But the Cowboys seemed to be fighting back against the Bucs, especially Dak Prescott. The 49ers have better defense than Tampa Bay, but Dallas’ offense will be able to move the ball. For the 49ers, it will come down to Dallas pressure on Brock Purdy. Purdy has been outstanding since taking over as a starter with five games remaining in the regular season. He played well in the win against the Seahawks last week, but this will be the best defense he’s ever faced. The Dallas pass rush can be disruptive, which I think is happening here. Prescott will have the upper hand between the two quarterbacks in this case while Dallas pulls the excitement.
Choose: Cowboys 27, 49ers 26