What goes up should come down. After offenses thrived in the course of the high-scoring, entertaining video games of wild-card weekend, the defenses made their presences felt within the divisional spherical. The eight groups averaged solely 20 factors per recreation, greater than a full landing beneath final weekend’s 27.5. Those that felt the preliminary surge in scoring would create some edges for the divisional spherical totals had been rewarded in a giant approach, as unders completed 4-0 final weekend.
The place does it depart us heading into the convention championship video games? Probably someplace within the center. The totals for every recreation are barely above the common closing complete of the common season (43.8) and the league’s scoring common per recreation (44). The Eagles and 49ers’ prime defenses are anchoring the overall that’s presently 44.5 at BetMGM. The Chiefs and Bengals, who’ve arguably the highest two QBs within the league, at the moment are sitting at 47 factors.
Take the over with Burrow-Mahomes and seize the underneath with the Eagles-49ers? It would not shock me if it had been that easy as a result of completely nothing surprises me after seeing 20 weeks of an NFL soccer season. Nonetheless, there are key variables to think about. Patrick Mahomes was severely hobbled the final time he was on a soccer discipline, Jalen Hurts seemed 100% wholesome, and Brock Purdy did not like Dallas’ cross rush. Ought to we purchase the dip and financial institution on scoring bouncing again? Let’s dive in and focus on the perfect methods to play every complete.
San Francisco 49ers at Philadelphia Eagles (O/U 45.5)
Right here is the recency bias recreation for me. As soon as all people endured the three-hour rock combat between the Cowboys and 49ers, they left satisfied this weekend’s recreation would play out the identical approach. I received information for them: Jalen Hurts just isn’t Dak Prescott. However this is not simply in regards to the Eagles. We’re getting two top-five scoring offenses with a complete reflecting an average-scoring recreation. Earlier than Hurts’ harm, Philadelphia’s offense was 2nd within the NFL in EPA per play behind solely Kansas Metropolis. When you assume that is spectacular, the 49ers had been No.1 over the past 5 weeks with Purdy because the beginning quarterback.
These are two very explosive offenses in opposition to robust defenses on paper, however there are questions on each models. No disrespect to both protection, however the NFL is constructed for offenses to succeed. If its energy on energy, the offense has the benefits. Additionally, based on Soccer Outsiders DVOA metric, San Francisco’s protection ranks first, whereas Philadelphia slides in at a good sixth. Nonetheless, they’ve completed it in opposition to the twenty eighth and thirty first best schedules, respectively. The Eagles’ protection gave up 40 to Dallas in its final massive take a look at, and the 49ers allowed 34 to the Raiders the final time they performed on the street. Each defenses are very robust, however I am betting on each offenses for those who’re asking who controls the sport. Take the over 45.5.
Cincinnati Bengals at Kansas Metropolis Chiefs (O/U 47)
The full received instantly pushed all the way down to 47 after opening at 48.5, which is smart contemplating some uncertainty round Mahomes’ high-ankle sprain. Nonetheless, the Chiefs’ QB took to Twitter final night time to reassure followers he might be a go for Sunday.
We discovered just a few issues in opposition to Jacksonville. Will probably be troublesome to maintain Mahomes off the sector, and him enjoying does not assure he’ll carry out at an MVP degree. Cincinnati’s defensive coordinator, Lou Anarumo, has triggered Mahomes suits up to now, main to 3 straight wins over Kansas Metropolis. Nonetheless, Cincy’s good sufficient to know they are not stopping the Kansas Metropolis offense, and the components is to gradual the Chiefs down sufficient so Burrow can outscore them.
Even when Anarumo’s plans labored nicely over his final three wins in opposition to Kansas Metropolis, the Chiefs scored not less than 24 factors every recreation. In addition they averaged 19.6 within the first half. That is the place I see the worth. The primary-half complete is presently 23.5 at BetMGM. The Bengals’ offense has come out firing on all cylinders over the past five games, constructing massive leads and scoring 18 factors per recreation in first halves.
I might slightly guess on Andy Reid popping out sizzling after scheming up some counters for Anamuro’s protection than worrying about who wins the in-game changes. Plus, you would need to assume Mahomes’ ankle will really feel its finest early within the recreation, so we’re limiting publicity to him aggravating it late. I’m seeing a quick begin for each groups, making the perfect strategy attempting to money in early with the primary half over 23.5.