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NFL Divisional Round Preview

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Credit: NFL Twitter

As the NFL Divisional Round beckons, fans are gearing up for a weekend of high-octane football action. Four electrifying matchups are on the cards, each with its own narrative and potential for playoff magic. Let’s dive into the previews and predictions, making a case for the projected winners: the Ravens, the 49ers, the Buccaneers, and the Bills.

Baltimore Ravens vs. Houston Texans
Time: Saturday, 4:30 p.m. ET (ESPN, ABC)
Spread: Ravens (-9.5) | Total: 43.5

The Ravens have been a dominant force, with an offense averaging 28.4 points per game and a defense allowing just 16.5 points per game. Lamar Jackson, their quarterback, has been phenomenal with 3,678 passing yards, 24 touchdowns, and an impressive ground game with 821 rushing yards. Gus Edwards, with over 800 rushing yards and 13 touchdowns, provides a robust support system. Wide receiver Bay Flowers, with 858 receiving yards and five touchdowns, adds another layer to their offensive prowess. Houston, despite their growth, seems outmatched against the Ravens’ high-powered scoring offense and sturdy defense.

Ravens 41, Texans 21

Green Bay Packers vs. San Francisco 49ers
Time: Saturday, 8:15 p.m. ET (FOX)
Spread: 49ers (-9.5) | Total: 50.5

The 49ers boast a team scoring 28.9 points per game and allowing only 17.5 points per game defensively. Brock Purdy has thrown for 4,280 yards and 31 touchdowns. Christian McCaffrey, with his 1,459 rushing yards and 14 touchdowns, and Brandon Aiyuk, amassing 1,342 receiving yards and seven touchdowns, form an explosive offensive trio. Tight end George Kittle, contributing over 1,000 receiving yards and six touchdowns, makes the 49ers a formidable threat to the Packers.
49ers 34, Packers 17

Tampa Bay Buccaneers vs. Detroit Lions
Time: Sunday, 3 p.m. ET (NBC)
Spread: Lions (-6.5) | Total: 48.5

This matchup is intriguing, with both teams showcasing tremendous growth this season. The Lions, led by Jared Goff, have emerged from being underdogs to legitimate contenders. Goff’s 4,000+ passing yards with 29 touchdowns, along with Jammer Gibbs (945 rushing yards) and David Montgomery (1,015 rushing yards) in the backfield, create a dynamic offense. Ahmon Ra St. Brown, with over 1,500 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns, and tight end Sam LaPorta’s impressive 889 yards and 10 touchdowns, add depth to their attack. The Buccaneers, on the other hand, have a formidable defense allowing only 19 points per game. Baker Mayfield’s season, with 28 touchdown passes and over 4,000 yards, alongside receivers Mike Evans and Chris Godwin, both with over 1,000 yards, makes them a tough contender. However, the Lions’ home advantage and offensive firepower give them an edge.

Lions 27, Buccaneers 20

Kansas City Chiefs vs. Buffalo Bills
Time: Sunday, 6:30 p.m. ET (CBS)
Spread: Bills (-2.5) | Total: 45.5

In what could be the highlight of the Divisional Round, the Bills and Chiefs face off in a highly anticipated rematch. The Chiefs’ defense has been stellar, holding teams to 17.3 points per game. However, they face the Bills’ Josh Allen, who is in exceptional form. Allen, with 562 passing yards and five touchdowns in his last two games, boasts a completion percentage of 74.5%. His ability to deliver under pressure makes the Bills an offensive juggernaut. The Chiefs, with Patrick Mahomes at the helm, are always a threat, but Allen’s recent performances and the Bills’ overall balance might tip the scales in their favor.

Bills 24, Chiefs 20

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