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Reply To: ♦ AFC Wild Card Playoffs ♦ Saturday 1/9/16

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Game Date/Time: 1/9/16 4:35 pm
Our Selection: Chiefs/Texans ‘over’ Line: 40
Rating: 5*
Analysis: At 4:35 pm, on Saturday, our selection is on the ‘over’ in the Kansas City/Houston game.
This selection is largely technical, in nature, as it falls into Totals systems of mine that are 110-72, 46-14, 35-6, 60-30, and 84-46. Let’s take a look at our 84-46 angle. What we want to do is play on the ‘over’ in Playoff games where the line is less than 44 points, provided the underdog is getting 3+ points, and it averages no more than 23.5 ppg. In this game, the underdog Houston Texans are averaging barely over 21 ppg (21.18), and rank dead last among Playoff teams in scoring. The knee-jerk reaction might be to think that this game will be low-scoring, given Houston’s poor offensive capabilities. But I look for a relatively high-scoring game. Moreover, the Texans have gone ‘over’ the total in 22 of 31 games as home underdogs, while the Chiefs have gone ‘over’ the total in 15 of their last 20 as road favorites, including the match-up between these two teams earlier this season, won by the Chiefs, 27-20. Take the ‘over.’

Game Date/Time: 1/9/16 4:35 pm
Our Selection: Chiefs
Opponent: Texans Line: -3
Rating: 4*
Analysis: At 4:35 pm, our selection is on the Kansas City Chiefs minus the points over Houston.
The Texans come into this game off 3 SU/ATS wins. But those three wins came against Houston’s AFC South Division rivals (Indy, Jacksonville, Tennessee) — not exactly murderer’s row. The Chiefs, meanwhile, are playing as well as any team in football. KC’s won 10 straight games, and has won those games by an average of 15 ppg. For the same time period, Houston’s won by an average of 5.3 ppg. KC falls into 37-9 and 117-56 ATS Playoff systems of mine, based on its and Houston’s scoring margins, as well as a 39-18 ATS System. That 39-18 angle goes against teams that held their last two foes in the regular season to 14 points or less. Finally, The Chiefs have covered 7 straight on the road when priced from -3 to -6.5 points. Lay it!

Game Date/Time: 1/9/16 8:15 pm
Our Selection: Bengals
Opponent: Steelers Line: +3
Rating: 5*
Analysis: At 8:15 pm, on Saturday, our selection is on the Cincinnati Bengals plus the points over the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Last week, the Bengals won, 24-16, as a 9.5-point favorite vs. Baltimore, while the Steelers bested the Browns, in Cleveland, 28-12. The Bengals will start AJ McCarron on Saturday while Andy Dalton continues to recover from a fractured thumb sustained in the last meeting between these two teams. But the fact that McCarron will be the starter is not a huge deal for me, especially considering Dalton’s history in the Playoffs. With the Bengals installed as a home underdog, I’m all over them in this game. First, Cincy falls into my very best Playoff systems, with records of 28-0, 53-10, 75-15 and 32-5 ATS since 1980. Those angles are a bit different, but a common thread which runs through them relates to Cincinnati’s defense, which rates much better than Pittsburgh’s defense (17.43 compared to 19.93). But it’s not just that we have the better defensive team getting points. We also have the Steelers playing their third straight road game. That’s NEVER a good situation. Indeed, over the past 36 years, teams playing their 3rd straight road game are 107-141-1 ATS, including 19-34-1 ATS in the Playoffs. But that’s not the best part. If our road-weary traveler owns a win percentage less than .666, then our 34-19 stat zooms to 25-5 ATS since 1980, including 0-8 ATS off a double-digit win. Finally, the Bengals play with revenge from their 33-20 loss to Pittsburgh last month. And NFL teams are a perfect 10-0 ATS in the Playoffs vs. division rivals if they’re off a pointspread defeat, and also play with revenge from a loss in which they gave up 28+ points.