Frenzy and pandemonium filled the NFL Wild Card weekend.
All four underdogs covered the spread (depending on the sportsbook), including in Chicago, where a “double-doink” missed field goal attempt allowed the Philadelphia Eagles to slip by the Bears.
Per ESPN Stats & Information, underdogs in the playoffs have now covered the spread in 10 straight games heading into this week’s divisional round, the longest such streak in the Super Bowl era.
A wild Wild Card weekend featured the most heavily wagered-on game (Eagles-Bears) since DraftKings Sportsbook launched in August. It had big wins ($120,000 bet on the Los Angeles Chargers at -120) and bigger losses (a $300,000 wager on the Baltimore Ravens to beat the Chargers).
The craziness kicks up another notch this weekend, with only eight teams remaining in the hunt for the Lombardi Trophy.
Add ’em to your NJ sports betting slip
Indianapolis Colts (10-6) at Kansas City Chiefs (12-4)
Just think: The Colts finished eight games below .500 last year. Now, they’re a win away from returning to the AFC Championship game.
Indy has quite a hill to climb to get there.
In the Colts’ path stands a team that has torched defenses, led by likely MVP Patrick Mahomes.
The Chiefs lead the NFL in offense, more than making up for a disappointing defense that ranks in the lower tier against the pass. And that is where Luck and Indianapolis can take advantage.
Listed at +195 on the moneyline, Indy comes off a wild-card win in which Luck had two touchdown (TD) passes, though it was running back Marlon Mack stealing the show with 148 yards rushing. So, it appears, the Colts, 5.5-point underdogs, have a two-headed attack to give KC fits.
SugarHouse lists the over/under for Kansas City at 30.5 points, a total it has surpassed 10 times this season but only three times at home. Conversely, the Colts’ over/under stands at 26.5 points, a total Indy has eclipsed nine times overall and only three times on the road.
One prop that intrigues, surrounds the passing potency of Mahomes and Luck. The over/under for both sit at 2.5 TDs. The Kansas City and Indianapolis quarterbacks have topped that total eight and nine times this season, respectively.
On top of this, SugarHouse offers another market: Who has more touchdown passes? Luck +160 (41 TDs this season), Mahomes +100 (50 TDs), or the same +350.
Dallas Cowboys (10-6) at Los Angeles Rams (13-3)
While the Chargers commanded the majority of wagering, including in New Jersey, the Seattle Seahawks drew considerable attention in their wild-card game against the Cowboys last week.
Yet here Dallas stands, in the divisional round, after only the franchise’s third playoff win in 12 games. And now the Cowboys have an opportunity to reach the NFC Championship for the first time since 1995 when Dallas won it all.
Like Indianapolis, though, the Cowboys face a tall order in the City of Angels, sitting as 7-point underdogs who pay out +285 for an outright win.
The Rams have been streaky this season, riding a potent offense headed by quarterback Jared Goff and running back Todd Gurley II. Los Angeles can certainly put up points, highlighted by a 54-point outing against Kansas City; though the Rams can also struggle, as shown in a 6-point showing two games later.
The offense, too, has shown inconsistencies, allowing 15 points against the Bears one week and then 30 points against the Eagles a week later.
With Dallas, running back Ezekiel Elliott has displayed his dominance. And quarterback Dak Prescott seems to have settled in with wide receiver Amari Cooper highlighting the receiving corp.
Certainly, though, the Cowboys will need to put together a flawless effort to slay the giant in LA.
On the road this season, Dallas has led at the half in just two games, winning both. The NFC East champ, though, has gone 10-0 overall when heading to the locker room on top.
On the flip side, when trailing at the break, the Cowboys went 1-4, all on the road.
The Rams, meanwhile, are 5-0 when leading at the half at home, and 9-0 overall. Only once this season has LA trailed at the break when at home, and the Rams won anyway.
SugarHouse Sportsbook lines for the leading at the half/end of the regulation market:
- Los Angeles/Los Angeles -155
- Dallas/Dallas +400
- Dallas/Los Angeles +575
- Los Angeles/Dallas +1,000
- Tie/Los Angeles +1,400
- Tie/Dallas +2,200
Additionally, Dallas sits at +125 to score first compared with LA’s -175 line. For the home team to score first and win, SugarHouse gives LA a +104, and for Dallas to accomplish the feat stands at +420.
For what it’s worth, the Cowboys scored first in 12 of 17 games this season, including four times on the road (during which Dallas went 3-1). The Rams struck first in four home games, and eight times overall, and went undefeated when doing so.
Los Angeles Chargers (12-4) at New England Patriots (11-5)
For the second straight playoff game, the Chargers head on the road as underdogs.
Last week, LA was one of the more popular takes in the NFL Wild Card round. And the Chargers paid out by running over Baltimore early before holding off a rally to win.
In the running for the No. 1 seed until late in the regular season, the 12-win Chargers go on the road again to take on perennial Super Bowl champ New England, which sits as a 4-point favorite. An outright win by Los Angeles pays +165 on the moneyline.
Chargers QB Philip Rivers has put together the best argument of his career to win the MVP, though it will likely go to AFC West rival Patrick Mahomes. With WR Keenan Allen and WR Mike Williams emerging as threats, the Chargers certainly make a case for a second straight upset, even against a Patriots team that annually shows it is at its best during the postseason, making the Super Bowl in three of the past four years.
An intriguing prop bet involves the first-quarter performance of the Chargers and Patriots. SugarHouse lists LA at +205 to win the opening period, New England at -103 and a tie at +310. The Patriots have gone 8-0 in the first quarter when at home this season, compared with the Chargers 3-5-1 road record.
In that same vein, the sportsbook pegs the over/under for first-quarter points at 7.5, with the overpaying -139 and the undergoing for +105. New England has certainly been at its best at home, averaging 6.9 points in the first quarter in eight games. The Chargers, meanwhile, averaged 5.1 points in the opening quarter of road games.
Overall, SugarHouse has two over/unders for total touchdowns: 4.5 (over -177, under +130) and 5.5 (over +130, under -180). With LA averaging 3.3 TDs per road game and New England averaging 4.1 TDs, that total comes to 7.4 TDs.
Philadelphia Eagles (9-7) at New Orleans Saints (13-3)
While the season has been more tumultuous this time around, this Eagles season carries similar storylines.
An underdog throughout the year. Franchise QB goes down with an injury. Nick Foles steps in and leads Philadelphia to a playoff run. Adding to the plot this year is Philly’s attempt to avenge a historic loss in Week 11.
Just after the season’s midpoint, the Eagles went to New Orleans and was drubbed 48-7, the worst loss by a reigning Super Bowl champion in NFL history.
Things are obviously different when the postseason comes around, though. Only in the playoffs can an 8-point underdog, Philly, realistically pull off a noteworthy upset and ultimately pay +300 on the moneyline.
Certainly, with QB Drew Brees at the helm, New Orleans is no slouch. In fact, at most sportsbooks, the Saints stand as the favorite to lift the Lombardi Trophy.
Several props to consider at SugarHouse concern points scored and the team leading at the half/the team that ultimately wins.
First, the sportsbook lists New Orleans’ over/under at 29.5 points and Philadelphia at 20.5. The Saints averaged 34.1 points at home (31.5 overall), while the Eagles scored 22.3 points per game on the road (22.5 overall).
As for the halftime/full-time market:
- New Orleans/New Orleans -175
- Philadelphia/Philadelphia +440
- Philadelphia/New Orleans +575
- New Orleans/Philadelphia +1,050
- Tie/New Orleans +1,400
- Tie/Philadelphia +2,200
On the road, the Eagles led in just three of eight games and went 2-1 in those contests. Conversely, New Orleans posted a 5-0 mark in home games when up at the half, 8-0 overall.
Finally, a moneyline/total points parlay attracts interest. Will New Orleans win and the game hit the over (+145) or the under (+155)? Or will Philly get the upset and hit the over (+500) or under (+525)?
The Saints are 6-2 at home, and in five games they pushed the total to over 50.5 points (going 4-1 in said games). As for the Eagles, four of their past eight games overall eclipsed 50.5 points, including three on the road. Philly is 4-4 on the road, though it has won its past three games.
Divisional Specials + Super Bowl odds at SugarHouse
To begin with, SugarHouse Sportsbook’s updated Super Bowl and AFC and NFC championship odds:
- Super Bowl: New Orleans +225, Kansas City +400, LA Rams +450, New England +600, LA Chargers +1,000, Indianapolis +1,200, Philadelphia +1,200, Dallas +1,800
- NFC Championship: New Orleans +100, LA Rams +210, Philadelphia +600, Dallas +775
- AFC Championship: Kansas City +135, New England +225, LA Chargers +425, Indianapolis +550
Additionally, SugarHouse offers an array of Divisional Round Weekend Specials.
Bettors can wager on which player will finish the weekend with the most receiving yards (Kansas City’s Tyreek Hill, Indy’s TY Hilton and New Orleans’ Michael Thomas lead at +400).
They can bet on the round’s leading rusher (among them, Dallas’ Ezekiel Elliott at +175, LA Rams’ Todd Gurley II at +200, LA Chargers’ Melvin Gordon at +450).
And on which players rack up the most passing yards (leading the way are Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes at +225, Indy’s Andrew Luck at +250 and New Orleans’ Drew Brees at +400).
Lastly, markets exist for bettors to wager on which teams score the most and least points during the weekend.
- Most points: Kansas City +250, New Orleans +275, LA Rams +300, Indianapolis +350, New England +400, LA Chargers +700, Dallas +1,200, Philadelphia +1,400
- Least points: Philadelphia +150, Dallas +175, LA Chargers +350, New England +1,000, Indianapolis +1,200, LA Rams +1,400, New Orleans +1,600, Kansas City +1,800
Where else to bet online in New Jersey
As it has been well-documented, New Jersey features an array of mobile sports betting options.
Nine mobile sportsbooks complement the nine retail operations in the Garden State:
- DraftKings Sportsbook
- PlayMGM Sport
- SugarHouse Sportsbook
- FanDuel Sportsbook
- William Hill (Caesars NJ)
- Caesars Sportsbook
- 888 Sportsbook
- BetStars NJ
The list of NJ sportsbook apps includes a deep variety of traditional moneylines, parlays, in-game betting and futures.