The NFL weekend continues with two more playoff clashes. The first match sees periennal Super Bowl challengers the New England Patriots host the Los Angeles Chargers.
The Chargers had a better regular season record than their opponents, winning 12 of their 16 games while the Pats won 11, but had the misfortune to be in the same division as the high-flying Kansas City Chiefs. This meant they became a wild card while the Pats won their division and got a higher seeding, a week’s rest and home field advantage.
And it’s this rest and time to prepare that we think will give the Pats the edge.
The Pats offence stuttered at the start of the season and it was the reintroduction of Julian Edelman from injury that sparked it back to light. He is a key player for the Pats, and one of the first targets that quarterback Tom Brady looks for. We’ll take a punt that he scores the first touchdown.
The second match has the potential to be a blowout. The New Orleans Saints are the top seeds in the NFC and now face the defending SuperBowl champions the Philadelphia Eagles, a team they beat 48-7 in the regular season.
The Saints have been fantastic this season, winning 13 times and averaging over 30 points a game. They are also 5-0 at home in the playoffs under head coach Sean Payton.
Now it’s unlikely the Eagles will capitulate as easily this time round, after all they weren’t expected to win in Chicago last weekend. But the Saints are very difficult to stop at home, and we don’t expect them to.
In a team full of attacking talent, running back Alvin Kamara has shone, scoring 14 touchdowns during the regular season. He scored in the earlier meeting between these two teams, and we’ll take a punt he scores twice tonight.
Pats/Chargers: Edelman to score first touchdown, 1 pt, at 9/1, William Hill
Saints/Eagles: Kamara to score two touchdowns, 1 pt, at 3/1, SkyBet
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