NFL Playoffs 2022: Updated Divisional-Round Odds and Bracket Scenarios

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistJanuary 19, 2022

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (17) and wide receiver Emmanuel Sanders (1) celebrate during the second half of an NFL wild-card playoff football game against the New England Patriots in Orchard Park, N.Y., Saturday, Jan. 15, 2022. (AP Photo/ Jeffrey T. Barnes)
Jeffrey T. Barnes/Associated Press

There are big expectations for the divisional-round clash between the Buffalo Bills and Kansas City Chiefs. 

The two AFC sides combined for 802 total yards and 62 points in last season's AFC Championship Game, and they each come into Sunday's game off 40-point performances in the Wild Card Round. 

Buffalo and Kansas City appear primed to produce another high-scoring affair, which has led to the highest over/under on the board for the weekend slate. 

The No. 1 seeds entering the fray on Saturday carry the largest point spreads in their favor. The Green Bay Packers are close to a touchdown favorite on a weekend when all of the other lines are around a field goal.

Green Bay defeated San Francisco early in the regular season, and it may be better suited to make a deep playoff run compared to last season because of its improved defense. 

If Green Bay and the Tennessee Titans win Saturday, they will be the hosts of the two conference championship games. 

If one of the No. 1 seeds lose, the winner of the Sunday game in that respective conference hosts next weekend. 


Divisional-Round Odds

Saturday, January 22

Cincinnati at Tennessee (-3.5) (O/U: 47) (4:30 p.m. ET, CBS) 

San Francisco at Green Bay (-6) (O/U: 47) (8:15 p.m. ET, Fox)


Sunday, January 23

Los Angeles Rams at Tampa Bay (-3) (O/U: 48.5) (3 p.m. ET, NBC) 

Buffalo at Kansas City (-1.5) (O/U: 54.5) (6:30 p.m. ET, CBS) 


Buffalo at Kansas City (Over 54.5) 

Travis Heying/Associated Press

Buffalo and Kansas City set the standard for playoff offense in the Wild Card Round. 

The Bills blasted through the New England Patriots defense for 47 points and 482 total yards, while the Chiefs torched the Pittsburgh Steelers for 42 points and 478 total yards. 

Those two performances sent expectations through the roof for the AFC Championship Game rematch at Arrowhead Stadium. 

Josh Allen and Patrick Mahomes combined for 612 passing yards and five touchdowns in that clash. The Bills quarterback also had 88 rushing yards on seven carries. 

Allen has an improved set of options around him thanks to the development of Devin Singletary and Dawson Knox at running back and tight end, respectively.

Buffalo has a more balanced rushing attack, and Knox gives Allen an extra red-zone target to pick out if Stefon Diggs, Gabriel Davis and others are covered. 

Kansas City still has Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce in place, but the depth pieces behind them have gotten better. Mecole Hardman and Byron Pringle had over 500 receiving yards in the regular season, and Demarcus Robinson had 76 yards in the win over Pittsburgh. 

The Chiefs also added in Jerick McKinnon's pass-catching ability out of the backfield to complement Darrel Williams versus the Steelers. 

It will be hard for either defense to slow down every facet of the opposing offense, and that sets the stage for a shootout. 

Kansas City's defense gave up over 400 total yards on seven occasions. One of those was the 38-20 loss to the Bills in Week 5. 

Buffalo's defense only had one 400-yard concession, but it did give up its second-highest total to Kansas City in the regular-season clash at Arrowhead Stadium.

The Week 5 showdown produced 58 points, and that's another sign pointing to the over being the best bet for the divisional-round finale. 


San Francisco at Green Bay (-6) 

Tony Avelar/Associated Press

Green Bay fixed some of the issues that plagued it during last season's playoff run. 

The Packers were torched by Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the NFC Championship Game. They responded by drafting Eric Stokes in the first round, and they found a gem in Rasul Douglas midway through the regular season.

Green Bay's secondary is better equipped to take on any postseason challenge, and that could help with covering Deebo Samuel, George Kittle and Brandon Aiyuk. 

A shutdown in the defensive backfield could help the Packers deal with the 49ers rushing attack. Green Bay was one of the few teams that held San Francisco to under 100 rushing yards in the regular season. 

The 49ers did not have Elijah Mitchell in the Week 3 contest, though, and that game happened well before Deebo Samuel was a major asset in the ground attack. 

Green Bay needs to adapt its run-game defense to deal with Samuel around the edges and Mitchell through the middle. 

The Packers do have familiarity with Kyle Shanahan's run-blocking scheme, which could help them shut down parts of the ground attack.

Aaron Rodgers achieved success in Week 3 by completing 23 of his 33 passes for 261 yards and two touchdowns. 

The 38-year-old is expected to get Randall Cobb back this week, per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport, to bolster his receiving corps led by Davante Adams. 

The combination of Adams, Cobb, Allen Lazard and Marquez Valdes-Scantling could be too much for the San Francisco defense to handle. Four of its highest passing-yard concessions came on the road, or against the Packers. 

If Rodgers has the same level of success on Saturday as he did in Week 3, the Packers could cover the highest point spread of the weekend. 


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