NFL Playoff Odds 2020: Early Lines for Wild Card Games and Super Bowl

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistDecember 30, 2019

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady walks to the sideline after throwing an interception to Miami Dolphins cornerback Eric Rowe, who ran it back for a touchdown in the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Dec. 29, 2019, in Foxborough, Mass. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Elise Amendola/Associated Press

Prepare yourself, gamblers. The long-awaited NFL playoff lines have arrived.

The Wild Card Games are set after the San Francisco 49ers clinched the NFC West crown and NFC's No. 1 seed with a victory over the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday night.

With that in mind, here is a look at the early wild-card spreads, per Action Network, as well as the odds to win the Super Bowl.

     

Wild-Card Game Spreads

Buffalo Bills at Houston Texans (-3.5)

Tennessee Titans at New England Patriots (-4.5)

Minnesota Vikings at New Orleans Saints (-6)

Seattle Seahawks (-1) at Philadelphia Eagles

      

Super Bowl Odds

          

Wild-Card Matchup to Watch: Tennessee Titans at New England Patriots

FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - DECEMBER 29: Tom Brady #12 of the New England Patriots hands the ball off to Sony Michel #26 during the game against the Miami Dolphins  at Gillette Stadium on December 29, 2019 in Foxborough, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Me
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The New England Patriots playing on Wild Card Weekend is appointment viewing just based on how rare it has been throughout their dynasty.

This will mark the first time Tom Brady and Co. don't have a first-round bye since 2009.

The Tennessee Titans are the ones who will be standing in their way after clinching a playoff spot with Sunday's win over the Houston Texans. While a postseason matchup with New England is historically a recipe for disaster, this is not the same Patriots team fans have grown accustomed to seeing in recent years.

Brady was not named to the Pro Bowl for the first time since 2008 (when he tore his ACL in the season opener), there is no game-breaking tight end after Rob Gronkowski retired, and there aren't any wide receivers outside of Julian Edelman that Brady can rely on in crunch time.

Even with all of that, the Patriots still had an opportunity to clinch a first-round bye Sunday with a win over the 4-11 Miami Dolphins but couldn't come through at home.

Ryan Fitzpatrick picked apart New England's secondary for 320 passing yards and a late go-ahead touchdown throw to Mike Gesicki during the 27-24 win. The way the loss happened was all the more concerning for a Patriots team that has counted on its defense to lead the way all year.

Ryan Tannehill will look to replicate Fitzpatrick's performance against the vaunted New England secondary, and he will have help from running back Derrick Henry, who is coming off a career-best regular season.

Henry entered play Sunday with 1,329 rushing yards and 15 total touchdowns and is a nightmare to bring down between the tackles and in open space because of his size and speed. He exploded for 211 rushing yards and three touchdowns in the win over Houston to clinch the NFL rushing title:

If the Tannehill and Henry combination can find the end zone two or three times, the Patriots offense will be hard-pressed to keep pace given its overall struggles for much of the season.

          

Undercard Matchup: Buffalo Bills at Houston Texans

There are few more intriguing matchups in the first round of the playoffs than the one between the Houston Texans offense and Buffalo Bills defense.

Deshaun Watson, DeAndre Hopkins and Will Fuller make up one of the most explosive trios in the NFL, but the group faces a difficult test against Buffalo's defense. The Bills entered play Sunday second in the league in points allowed per game and third in yards allowed per game and will be tasked with slowing the dynamic receivers down.

If they can, their offense that has been inconsistent at best behind quarterback Josh Allen will not need to score 20-plus points to win.

That is the only realistic formula to a road victory for the AFC East team.

Related

    Why the Bears Must Add Another QB

    Chicago can't afford not to get insurance for Mitch Trubisky when NFL's quarterback carousel is this stacked

    NFL logo
    NFL

    Why the Bears Must Add Another QB

    Brad Gagnon
    via Bleacher Report

    NFLPA Vote Set for Tuesday

    NFL logo
    NFL

    NFLPA Vote Set for Tuesday

    Tim Daniels
    via Bleacher Report

    Offseason's Most Intriguing Free Agents 👀

    Storylines behind the names that could have the biggest impact when they move

    NFL logo
    NFL

    Offseason's Most Intriguing Free Agents 👀

    Gary Davenport
    via Bleacher Report

    NFL Announces Changes to Scouting Combine Drills

    NFL logo
    NFL

    NFL Announces Changes to Scouting Combine Drills

    Paul Kasabian
    via Bleacher Report