Divisional Round Preview: Green Bay vs Dallas, Pittsburgh vs Kansas City

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The NFL playoffs proceed to the Divisional Round this weekend, and many people will be watching the Green Bay Packers-Dallas Cowboys showdown on Sunday. Not only are these two of the most popular franchises in the NFL, these two teams are viewed as two of the top Super Bowl contenders. Can the Cowboys’ impressive rookies lead them past Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers?


Green Bay Packers @ Dallas Cowboys

Sunday, 4:40 PM ET
Favourite: Cowboys –4
Total: 52.5

Aaron Rodgers continued to amaze fans in last week’s 38-13 rout of the New York Giants. He has now thrown for 22 touchdowns since his last interception in Week 10. The Packers have won seven straight games, and Rodgers has thrown for four touchdowns with zero interceptions in three straight games.

This has to be a concern for the Cowboys, who are 26th in the league defending the pass. Rodgers and Dak Prescott could be in for big days through the air, but the Cowboys may have the trump card with RB Ezekiel Elliott, who led the NFL in rushing this regular season. Elliott ran for 100 yards or more seven times, and the Cowboys won six of those games.

One of those games was Dallas' 30-16 win at Green Bay in Week 6. Elliott ran for 157 yards, and Prescott threw for three touchdowns. It was a forgettable day for Rodgers, who was picked off once and fumbled the ball three times (one lost). The Cowboys would love to ride their running game, win the time of possession battle and keep Rodgers on the sidelines in this matchup.

The Cowboys have been very good at home this season, going 7-1 SU and 5-2-1 ATS. On the road, the Packers are 4-4 SU and 3-5 ATS. The Cowboys and Packers are both in the top three for Super Bowl 51 futures, with the Cowboys at +475 and the Packers at +550.


Pittsburgh Steelers @ Kansas City Chiefs

Sunday, 1:05 PM ET
Favourite: Chiefs -1
Total: 44

The Steelers handled Miami 30-12 in the Wild Card round last week. QB Ben Roethlisberger threw two touchdowns to Antonio Brown, while running back Le'Veon Bell continued to be the key for the Steelers, rushing for 167 yards against a porous Dolphins defense. Bell reached the 100-yard mark seven times this season, and the Steelers were undefeated in each of those matches.

That's not good news for the Chiefs. Bell gashed them for 144 yards in Week 4, when the Steelers smoked the Chiefs 43-14. The Chiefs are 24th in yards allowed, 18th against the pass and 26th against the run. That’s part of the reason why they have the second-longest betting odds to win the Super Bowl at +900.

On the bright side, the Chiefs were seventh in points allowed and their 33 takeaways led the NFL during the regular season. It also helps that the Chiefs are coming off a bye week. Head coach Andy Reid’s teams are 16-2 when having an extra week to prepare and are a perfect 3-0 when coming off of a bye in the playoffs.

The Chiefs were 6-2 SU at home this season (only 3-5 ATS) while the Steelers were 5-3 SU on the road (5-3 ATS).


*Odds as of January 13, 2017

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