Eight teams remain! Check out the finest NFL Divisional Round predictions from our friends at FanDuel, from Cowboys-49ers to Giants-Eagles and beyond.
The NFL postseason is a funny sort of thing. One moment, you’re up 27-0. The next moment, you’re racing through Kübler-Ross’s stages of grief faster than you can cook a Pop-Tart.
Give it up for your Jacksonville Jaguars, a team that Urban Meyer nearly coached right out of earthly existence barely a year ago. Great job, big man!!!
And with that, we now must keep a short memory and look ahead, because we’ve got fearless picks and safe, legal wagers to lock in, so ahead of Saturday and Sunday’s cache of Divisional Playoff clashes, we called on our best friends at FanDuel for a complete expert-level download featuring the latest odds and projections for every matchup this weekend: Chiefs-Jaguars, Eagles-Giants, Bills-Bengals, and Cowboys-Niners.
There shall be no further delay — check out Boardroom’s one-stop overview of this weekend’s postseason slate with our finest NFL Divisional Round predictions.
NFL Divisional Playoff Predictions 2023
Jaguars vs. Chiefs (Jan. 21)
Ah, yes, the +300 Super Bowl favorites vs. the current biggest longshot at +3300. Simply to outdo the divisional rival Chargers, don’t be surprised if KC lets the Jaguars go ahead 28-0 before storming all the way back to win. It’s only fair.
As Adam Taylor McKillop writes at TheDuel to kick off our NFL Divisional Round predictions for the second phase of the playoffs:
The Jaguars are on a special run. Not even Trevor Lawrence’s four first-half interceptions could slow down Jacksonville in the second half. Unfortunately, the Los Angeles Chargers are a much different opponent than the No. 1 seed Chiefs.
Kansas City finished the regular with the league’s best offensive in terms of total yards and points scored. And slightly different than years past, Kansas City’s defense ranked just outside the top-10 in terms of yards allowed.
Jacksonville kept their magic going in the Wild Card Round, but they run into a buzzsaw. Considering Jacksonville’s success against the spread during their recent stretch (5-1 in their last six games), I’ll take the Jaguars to keep this close, but there’s no way Kansas City doesn’t leave Arrowhead with a victory on Saturday. Consider this another important learning experience for Trevor Lawrence. His time will come, but this is still Patrick Mahomes’ league.
Chiefs vs. Jaguars Prediction: Chiefs 31, Jaguars 24
Giants vs. Eagles (Jan. 21)
All three NFC East playoff teams made the Divisional Round? That means Brian Daboll’s G-Men are playing with house money — an uncomfortable situation for the conference’s No. 1 seed, and a setup for another division rivalry rematch in the NFC title game if Dallas can outclass the Niners.
As David Kaestle writes at TheDuel:
The Giants actually played the Eagles better in Week 18 with Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley resting on the sidelines than they did in Week 14 with everyone on the field. The Giants lost Week 14 by a score of 48-22. That was also during a stretch where the Giants went 0-3-1 and probably looked at their worst this season.
This game could be much closer for a few reasons. The Giants and Daniel Jones were clicking on all cylinders against the Vikings in the first round of the playoffs. Also, Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts has been dealing with a shoulder injury that has clearly affected his play. Head coach Nick Sirianni admits he expects that shoulder to still be an issue in the Divisional Round, but unless something changes, Hurts will play.
Being favored by a touchdown is a whole lot in the playoffs. Of the three teams favored by at least a touchdown in the playoffs, only one has covered so far. It’s incredibly tough to beat a team three times in one season, but I do expect the Eagles to do that. The Giants will just make it much closer than before.
Eagles vs. Giants Prediction: Eagles 24, Giants 20
Bengals vs. Bills (Jan. 22)
It’s poetic that these two teams are doing it all over again fewer than three full weeks after Damar Hamlin fell to the turf and the sporting world held its collective breath in stunned silence.
A whole hell of a lot has happened since then, and it’s been pretty much the best-case scenario for humanity all around. Football is nifty, isn’t it?
As Tyler Maher writes at TheDuel:
This game is a highly anticipated rematch of the Week 17 showdown between these two teams, which was cut short and ultimately canceled after Bills safety Damar Hamlin collapsed on the field. Thankfully, Hamlin is okay and will be cheering on his teammates as they try to move on to the next round.
Both teams are coming in incredibly hot after finishing the season on a tear. Buffalo has won eight straight games, while Cincinnati has won nine in a row. One of those winning streaks will come to an end here, however.
While both clubs are legit Super Bowl contenders, we think the Bills will prevail here. They hold the slight edge on both sides of the ball, ranking second in points scored and points allowed compared to the Bengals‘ rankings of sixth and seventh, respectively. Buffalo also has the advantage of playing at home, where the Bills are 8-1 this year including the playoffs.
Accordingly, expect Buffalo to come out on top in a close, high-scoring game between two powerhouses.
Bills vs. Bengals Prediction: Bills 31, Bengals 28
Cowboys vs. 49ers (Jan. 15)
Is this the mid-1990s?
As Larry Rupp writes at TheDuel to cap off our NFL Divisional Round predictions:
The Cowboys proved the doubters wrong in their Monday night win. Aside from kicker Brett Maher’s four missed extra points, the team played nearly perfect. Dak Prescott accounted for five total touchdowns and the Dallas defense held its opponent to under 20 points for an impressive 10th time this season.
As good as the Cowboys played, the 49ers were even better. San Francisco dropped 41 points on Seattle and forced 2 crucial turnovers. It was more of the same from a dominating team. The 49ers rank fifth in the NFL in points scored per game (27.3) and tied for second in total turnovers (30).
Home-field advantage is going to be the deciding factor here. San Francisco is 8-1 at Levi’s Stadium this season and has posted an average scoring margin of +13.7 at home. Dallas took down Tampa Bay on the road, but the Cowboys rank outside the top 12 in yards allowed per away game this year.
Niners vs. Cowboys Prediction: 49ers 27, Cowboys 20
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