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NFL Playoffs 2020: Schedule, Predictions and Odds for Divisional Round

Jake RillSenior Analyst IJanuary 10, 2020

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes (15) throws against the Los Angeles Chargers during the second half of an NFL football game in Kansas City, Mo., Sunday, Dec. 29, 2019. (AP Photo/Reed Hoffmann)
Reed Hoffmann/Associated Press

The NFL playoffs couldn't have gotten off to a more exciting start. The Wild Card Round featured two overtime games, and all four contests were decided by eight or fewer points.

Not only that, but three wild-card teams were victorious, including the No. 6 seed from each conference. The Minnesota Vikings upset the 13-3 New Orleans Saints, while the Tennessee Titans knocked off the New England Patriots.

The excitement should continue Saturday and Sunday, with four more great matchups scheduled to take place.

Here is the schedule for the divisional round, along with odds, per Caesars, and predictions.

                 

No. 6 Minnesota Vikings at No. 1 San Francisco 49ers (-7), Saturday at 4:35 p.m. ET on NBC

This will be the 49ers' first playoff game since they lost in the NFC Championship Game in the 2013 season. And they're going to need to shut down a Vikings team coming off a surprising road win over the Saints in the Wild Card Round.

While San Francisco's No. 2-ranked defense earned much of the credit for the team's 13-3 regular season, it also had one of the best offenses in the NFL. The 49ers ranked fourth in the league with 381.1 total yards per game, so they'll likely keep up with the Vikings if Minnesota's playmakers turn this game into a shootout.

However, there's a strong chance that won't happen. The Vikings' offense may have totaled 362 yards in their win at New Orleans, but a well-rested 49ers defense is going to be a much greater challenge.

Expect San Francisco to take control of this contest and handily win to advance to conference championship weekend.

Prediction: 49ers 27, Vikings 16

                

No. 6 Tennessee Titans at No. 1 Baltimore Ravens (-10), Saturday at 8:15 p.m. ET on CBS

The Ravens have the opportunity to finish the season on an incredibly dominant run.

Baltimore won a franchise-record 12 consecutive games to end the regular season, finishing with 14 wins for the first time in team history. That wasn't the only history the Ravens made, either, as they're also the No. 1 seed in the AFC for the first time and will have the opportunity to host their first AFC Championship Game.

In order to do that, Baltimore needs to defeat a Tennessee team that shocked the football world with a road win at New England last weekend, eliminating the Super Bowl champions. The Titans held Tom Brady and the Patriots to only 13 points and shut them out in the second half.

Don't expect a similar performance from Tennessee's defense this week, though. Lamar Jackson and Baltimore's top-ranked rushing attack will power it to the AFC Championship Game for the first time since the 2012 season.

Prediction: Ravens 31, Titans 13

            

No. 4 Houston Texans at No. 2 Kansas City Chiefs (-10), Sunday at 3:05 p.m. ET on CBS

Of the four games this weekend, this is the only matchup between two teams that won their respective divisions. That's because the Texans were the only one of the four division winners that played on wild-card weekend to advance to the divisional round.

After rallying from behind to beat Buffalo in overtime last weekend, Houston now goes on the road to take on Kansas City, which is looking to reach the AFC Championship Game for the second straight season.

When these two teams played during the regular season, there was a lot of offense. The Texans amassed 472 total yards in their 31-24 win at Kansas City in Week 6, while the Chiefs had 309 total yards in defeat.

There's going to be a lot of offense this time, too, but there will be a different result. Coming off a bye, Patrick Mahomes will power Kansas City to victory by leading a key late drive to secure the win.

Prediction: Chiefs 30, Texans 27

               

No. 5 Seattle Seahawks at No. 2 Green Bay Packers (-5), Sunday at 6:40 p.m. ET on Fox

If any team in this playoff field can make a deep run despite having no home games, it's the Seahawks. They got off to a good start last weekend, beating the Eagles 17-9 in Philadelphia. And while it wasn't the prettiest victory, Seattle got the job done.

It will have a tougher task this weekend when it travels to Green Bay to take on the Packers, who won their last five regular-season games to finish 13-3.

The last time Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson and Green Bay counterpart Aaron Rodgers faced off in the playoffs, it was a thrilling game. The Seahawks won that matchup in the NFC Championship Game in overtime during the 2014 season, overcoming a 16-point halftime deficit to notch a 28-22 victory.

Wilson and Rodgers will likely provide another exciting contest that could feature plenty of offense and come down to the wire. But Seattle will put its late-regular-season struggles behind it and notch another road win to advance to the NFC Championship Game for the first time since the 2014 season.

Prediction: Seahawks 28, Packers 26

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