NFL Playoffs 2023: Preview & Betting Odds For Wild Card Weekend

Denver, Colorado / USA - August 8, 2018: The NFL logo is displayed for visiting teams in the locker room of Denver Broncos Stadium at Mile High.


The time for talk is almost finished. The NFL playoffs begin this Saturday, and we have plenty of matchups to be excited about. The three-day Wild Card weekend starts on Saturday with Purdy boy swag taking on the Seahawks and ends on Monday night with Tampa Tom looking to stay undefeated against Dallas.

If you want to drop a little cash this weekend, check out our preview and the betting lines from Odds Shark for each Wild Card matchup.

Saturday Schedule

Seattle vs. San Francisco (-9.5) 4:30 pm ET

The 49ers have been the most underrated story heading into the Wild Card weekend. Yes, it’s hard for a team that’s 13-4 to be considered underrated. That is, until you realize they are on their third quarterback of the season and are still rolling through the competition.

Mr. Irrelevant Brock Purdy of the 2022 NFL Draft is 5-0 in his starts under center this season. Yes, you read that right. In those five starts, Purdy has registered 11 TDs with 2 INTs. Of course, the Niners are anchored by a stout defense. However, Purdy has shown he can win for this team. Can the Purdy Boy Swag season carry this team to the big one?

You can say the Seahawks aren’t a playoff team, but there’s not another team in the running this season that deserves it more. Seattle was left for dead by many when the team sent Russell Wilson to Denver. Now Denver looks like a train wreck, while Seattle, just like the opposition this week, may have found a diamond in the rough with Geno Smith.

In one season as the starter, Smith now holds the franchise record for most passing yards in a single season. Along with that record, the former second-round pick set his own career highs with 30 TDs and a completion percentage of 69.8.

Both teams have a lot to prove, but the Niners should take this one easy on paper. San Francisco is 11-6 Against The Spread (ATS), with a 7-2 ATS at home. The spread might be a little high at the current odds, but if I lived in a sports betting state, I think I would lay the hammer on this one.

Los Angeles Chargers vs. Jacksonville (+2.5) 8:15 pm ET

As it stands currently, the Jacksonville Jaguars are the most vulnerable division winner this weekend when it comes to the betting odds. The game has jumped from its opening line of 1.5 to 2.5; however, many bettors and fans are not putting much faith in the Jagging Off boys.

The betting history of this season tells us the Chargers could be the pick here. The Bolt Boys are 11-5-1 ATS, with a solid 7-2 ATS on the road record. The Chargers may have the better team, but the Jaguars have been the hotter team in recent weeks.

Jacksonville is on a 5 game-winning streak, while the Chargers are coming off an uninspiring loss to end the regular season against the Denver Broncos. If I were a betting man, I think I’d stay far away from the spread on this one. Now the thought of hammering the over at 47.5 looks like a prime piece of meat, baby.

Sunday Schedule

Miami vs. Buffalo (-13) 1:00 pm ET

The biggest spread of the weekend belongs to the Miami Dolphins and Buffalo Bills. The Bills are sitting as heavy favorites in this one and for good reason. Miami limped its way into the playoffs and will be starting third-string QB Skylar Thompson, who has looked to be the opposite of league darling Brock Purdy.

A healthy Dolphins team may have made this one a little more interesting, but Buffalo would be standing as strong favorites even if the Miami roster was at full health. The Bills have a strong 13-3 overall record, but their ATS record is a little more shaky. The Bills win, but they don’t tend to win a lot for those who bet them to cover.

The Bills are going to win this game and win big. Maybe that line has me as the next victim on the Freezing Cold Takes hit list, but I’m standing my ground. The Dolphins may not score over seven points, but Buffalo will score and score and score. Go ahead and give that over the love it deserves.

NY Giants vs. Minnesota (-3) 4:30 pm ET

The Minnesota Vikings are kings of the NFC North and may be the biggest frauds in the NFL at the same time. If the NFL gave an award for the Jekyll and Hyde team of the year, the team in purple and gold rightfully earned it. The runner-up for that award would potentially be the Vikings opponent this weekend, the New York Giants.

The Giants have been 3-5-1 since November, and as a Lions fan, I’m disgusted they are in the playoffs, and Detroit isn’t. Everyone jokes that Minnesota is a fraud. If they are, they have the perfect opponent to shove those thoughts up every hater’s derriere.

Every sports weekend sadly delivers one stinker performance. I hereby claim this matchup to be crowned the most boring game of the weekend. Vikings are just 3 point favorites, which makes me believe they cover. This is one of the two matchups I expect the under to hit this weekend.

Baltimore vs. Cincinnati (-8.5) 8:15 pm ET.

This one opened at 6.5 in favor of the Bengals. Now that it seems more unlikely that Lamar Jackson takes the field Sunday night, the spread has now jumped to 8.5. These two met last week, and the Bengals started hot, but it fizzled by the 4th quarter.

Maybe it was already knowing they were AFC North champs or that they would meet the Ravens on the same field in back-to-back weeks; the Bengals didn’t have that fire in the second half to match the hot start. Conversely, will the Ravens bring the fight knowing Jackson will not be available?

The teams split their regular season matchups while also splitting the O/U in both games. With the most recent matchup hitting the over. I’m expecting a defensive matchup with the Bengals offense being more in tune and exhausting the Baltimore D. I’m torn on the O/U but still expect the Bengals to cover.

Monday Schedule

Dallas vs. Tampa Bay (+2.5)

He hasn’t been the same, and neither has the team. Tom Brady posted his first losing record as a starting quarterback, and wouldn’t you know it, he still won the NFC South. The Buccaneers were Super Bowl Champions two years ago. Now they are underdogs in a home playoff game.

Luckily for Tampa Tom, he plays a team that didn’t figure out its identity in the regular season. The Dallas Cowboys scream the word potential yet; they never seem to get over the hump. The Cowboys put up just six points last week to a less than mid pig Commanders unit. Hopes are not high, with many in the Dallas fandom.

This is the second game I expect the under to hit on the weekend. Yes, he hasn’t looked the same this season, but I will NEVER, and I mean NEVER, count out Tom Brady. The Bucs will cover and more than likely win. Improving Brady’s undefeated record over Jerry Jones. A Cowboys loss could spark the fire of a regime change.

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