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Smooth’s Football Picks – Divisional Playoffs

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We’re down to the final 8. Four teams survived to keep their Super Bowl dreams alive. Now they have to take on the top two teams and keep their playoff hopes in check.

All odds courtesy of oddshark.com

Saturday, January 14

seahawks-falcons

Seattle at Atlanta
Line: Falcons by 5

The Seahawks finally found their offense at the right time, easily beating Detroit last weekend. Now they have to travel to the ATL in the final game being played at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons got a much needed rest and they look to break their playoff jinx. They’ve only been successful once in the playoffs since 1999, that’s when they went to their only Super Bowl appearance, but Atlanta haven’t had much success since. Matt Ryan is looking to break that streak after having an MVP-type season. The Seahawks have experience in the playoffs and despite being the underdog, their defense is able to shut down Atlanta’s high power offense. But for Seattle to win, they’ll need a monster game from Russell Wilson, otherwise its curtains.

Smooth’s Pick – Atlanta (24-21)

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Houston at New England
Line: Patriots by 15

The Texans took advantage of home field after disposing of Oakland to move on to the next round. But now, they have a tougher challenge. To travel to Foxborough, where they didn’t have much success the last time around. In fact, they were shut out by the Patriots 27-0 in week 3. Tom Brady has a chip on his shoulder and would love to prove his naysayers that he can win without resorting to cheating. If the Texans want to win this game, they’re gonna have to stop Tom Brady. Don’t give him time to pass. A low scoring game will be beneficial to Houston. But with so much trouble on the road all season, this game could get ugly by halftime.

Smooth’s Pick – New England (44-10)

Sunday, January 15th

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Pittsburgh at Kansas City
Line: Chiefs by 1½

This is about as evenly matched as you can get. The Chiefs are looking for revenge for being clobbered by the Steelers 43-14 in week 4. In that game, they were their top pass rusher, Justin Houston. The four-time Pro Bowler and 2014 sacks leader is expected to be back in the lineup, look for a tougher go this time around. Ben Rothlisberger will play despite walking with an air-cast after last week’s win verses Miami. He’ll need to be at 100% percent to go against the Kansas City defense. The Chiefs are tough at home, only losing once this season. This game may be a pick ‘em by game time, so it’s anyone’s guess. We’re going for our pre-season pick.

Smooth’s Pick – Pittsburgh (27-24)

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Green Bay at Dallas
Line: Cowboys by 4½

The Packers started off slow and finally gained steam to knock off the Giants last weekend. It was like that all season. After a 4-6 start, Green Bay bounced back by putting together seven straight victories. They can’t afford to do that this weekend in Dallas. Aaron Rodgers is getting hot at the right time. He should be able to put up big numbers verses the Cowboys defensive secondary. The big story will be, how will the Dallas rookies handle the pressure? Dak Prescott and Ezikiel Elliott have been lights out all season, and if they get out front early, it could be a long day for the Packers. This game will eventually be about whether Dez Bryant holds onto the ball after catching it. The Packers were our pre-season Super Bowl pick, and we’re still going with them.

Smooth’s Pick – Green Bay (31-28)

Now with all of our picks, past performance doesn’t guarantee future results. If you have a gambling problem, then please seek help by going to gamblers anonymous dot org.

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