NFL Best Bets Against the Spread – Wild Card Weekend Edition

Jake Benaquisto with his Best Bets for NFL Wild Card Weekend

My regular season was very disappointing, as I finished with a record of 40-44-1 against the spread. Luckily, I still have a few more weeks to lose money as we approach Wild Card Weekend.


Houston -1.5 vs. Indianapolis

Out of all the games this weekend, this is the one I struggled with the most. When I initially saw the line, I liked the Colts because of Andrew Luck’s playoff experience and their loaded offensive line. But after giving more it more thought, I’m taking the Texans.

The Deshaun Watson to Deandre Hopkins connection has been scary good this season. Hopkins has caught 115 passes for 1572 yards with zero drops, which is almost unheard of. Although we’ve never seen Watson in the playoffs before, the guy has proven many times that he is special and does not fold in big games.

Not only are the Texans the healthier team right now, but they lost to the Colts in Houston a few weeks ago, so I think they’ll be even more motivated to avenge that loss.

Give me Houston to win in a tight game, 29-27.

Dallas -1.5 vs. Seattle

As much as I hate to bet against Russell Wilson, I’m riding with the Cowboys here. Dallas’ defense has been outstanding all season and I’ve been particularly impressed with their young, dynamic duo at linebacker. Jaylon Smith and Leighton Vander Esch should play a big role in stopping Seattle’s rushing attack and I expect Dallas’ overall pass rush to be a problem.

This should be a close game and I could definitely see Wilson making a few insane plays late to win, but I’m taking the better defense and overall team at home.

Cowboys win 26-22.

Baltimore -2.5 vs. LA Chargers

I love this Chargers team and if they do end up winning this game, I could honestly see them going to the Super Bowl. However, this is simply a bad matchup for them.

When these teams met in week sixteen, Baltimore’s defense was absolutely dominant. They allowed only ten points and were disruptive against Phillip Rivers, as he only completed 23 of his 37 passing attempts and threw two interceptions.

Even though the Chargers will be seeking revenge for that regular season loss, I don’t think they can pull it off in Baltimore. The Ravens’ defense has playmakers at every level and their run game should be able to put this game away when they need to.

I like the Ravens to win here, 23-17.

Philadelphia +6.5 at Chicago

Chicago has the much better roster from top to bottom, but there’s something magical about the Eagles with Nick Foles playing QB. It helps having a brilliant head coach like Doug Pederson, who I expect will have the right game plan prepared for his offense.

As good as this Bears’ defense is, they could be without their star safety Eddie Jackson, which would be a significant loss. I’m also dubious about how Mitchell Trubisky will look in his first ever playoff game.

Ultimately, I think the Bears’ running game and defense leads them to a win, but I think the game is low scoring and close throughout.

I’ll take the Eagles to cover the 6.5 point spread, but Bears win outright, 18-17.

Week Seventeen Record: 2-3

Season Record: 40-44-1