Now that we have separated the wheat from the chaff, we will find out who will make up our NFL final four this week in the divisional round of the playoffs. The No. 1 seeded Green Bay Packers got things started early with a dominant second half on route to a 32-18 victory over the Los Angeles Rams. The Packers will advance to the NFC Championship and host the winner of Buccaneers/Saints. There’s still a lot to be decided.
The Bills will be joining the Packers on Championship Sunday after a decisive 17-3 win over the Ravens in the nightcap on Saturday and await the winner of Sunday’s game between the Chiefs and Browns.
Each week, we’ll collect all of the best picks and gambling content from CBSSports.com and SportsLine in one place, so you can get picks against the spread from our CBS Sports experts as well as additional feature content for each game, including plays from top SportsLine experts and the SportsLine Projection Model, best bets from our staff, survivor picks and more. This is your one-stop shop when it comes to picks!
All NFL odds via William Hill Sportsbook.
Browns at Chiefs
Time: Sunday, 3:05 p.m. ET (CBS), stream on CBS All Access
“Patrick Mahomes and Baker Mayfield have faced each other just once in their NFL careers, back in Week 9 of 2018 when the Chiefs beat the Browns by 16 points. It’s not the only time they have ever faced off in their football careers, however, as the two set a college-football record with 1,279 combined passing yards when Oklahoma and Texas Tech matched up in 2016. It’s more about the run game when it comes to the Browns, however, as in 14 games with Nick Chubb active, the Browns have rushed for 160.2 yards per game and 23 touchdowns, and finished the regular season with the No. 3 rushing offense in the league. Interestingly enough, the Chiefs have allowed 122.1 rushing yards per game this season, which is worst among all playoff teams. Still, I have a hard time believing that the Browns will upset the Chiefs in the divisional round. I do think that they can cover the spread, however, as the Chiefs haven’t won a game by more than six points since Week 8. Since Week 9 they are 1-7 against the spread, which is worst in the NFL!” — Jordan Dajani on why he’s leaning towards Cleveland to cover.
SportsLine Senior analyst Larry Hartstein is 15-2 in his last 17 picks in games that include the Chiefs, and he has a best bet for this divisional-round matchup. Check out his pick on SportsLine, here.
“The Browns’ biggest defensive weakness is their secondary and that’s not a weakness you can afford to have when you’re playing the Chiefs. The one thing that does worry me about the Chiefs is the rust factor. Normally, I don’t put much stock in something like that, but their starters won’t have played for three weeks by the time they take the field on Sunday. Last year, they fell behind 24-0 to the Texans before the rust wore off and now, they have to play a Browns team that just had the best first quarter of any team in NFL playoff history. That’s not an ideal combination for Kansas City.
“I’m fully expecting this game to be a shootout just like it is every time Baker Mayfield and Mahomes play each other.” — John Breech on why he’s eyeing the Over.
Top prop picks
Baker Mayfield Over 1.5 passing TDs (-125)
The Chiefs pass defense has allowed at least two touchdowns in eight straight games. Mayfield has fired at least two scores in five of his past seven. The line suggests the Browns will have to chase the scoreboard. The odds aren’t ideal but it feels very safe. — CBS Sports’ Dave Richard
Austin Hooper anytime TD (+250)
Hooper has come alive in his past six games, registering an average of 6.8 targets per game and scoring in four of them (and each of his past two). Kansas City has afforded a touchdown to a tight end in each of its past two games, and three of the past four. — CBS Sports’ Dave Richard
Time: Sunday, 6:40 p.m. ET (Fox), stream on fuboTV (Try for free)
“They did advance last week, but the Buccaneers did struggle a bit against Taylor Heinicke and it was hardly one of those wins you felt good about going forward. It kind of felt like they simply escaped rather than sent a message to the rest of the NFC that they were around to make a deep run. Meanwhile, the Saints had no problem with the Bears last time out, but you could make a case that we didn’t learn much about New Orleans either as Chicago did their best to come away with the ‘L.’ While Tampa Bay has the talent, it’s hard to trust them going on the road and slaying the Saints. In their careers, Drew Brees is 5-2 SU and ATS in head-to-head matchups with Tom Brady. This game will be closer than the previous matchups, but I’ll still roll with the status quo in New Orleans.” — Tyler Sullivan on why he likes the Saints to cover on Sunday.
“When two division rivals meet in the playoffs, I don’t necessarily pay attention to what happened during the regular season, but in this game, it’s kind of hard to ignore. The Saints blew out the Buccaneers twice this year with wins of 34-23 and 38-3, and yes, I count that first score as a blowout because it was 34-17 late in the game until the Buccaneers scored a garbage-time touchdown. Apparently, it’s supposed to be tough to beat a team three times in one season, but I’m starting to think that’s an old wives’ tale that some drunken NFL fan came up with one night after having one too many drinks on Bourbon Street. Since 1970, a total of 21 teams have gone 2-0 against a divisional opponent in the regular season and then faced them again in the playoffs and those 21 teams went 14-7 in the third game, which means 66.7% of the teams have finished the three-game sweep. Over the past 25 years, that number is 75% (9-3).” — John Breech on why he’s on the Saints to cover.
“Tampa Bay’s offense is putting up big numbers thanks to Brady, but that New Orleans defense hasn’t allowed 300 passing yards in any game all year. So, that New Orleans offense could be a little sharper than last week, but I think their ‘D’ dictates the game and the offense gets conservative in the second half.” — SportsLine’s R.J. White on the Pick Six Podcast explaining why he’s leaning towards the Under.
Top prop picks
Alvin Kamara Under 102.5 total yards (-115)
“Tampa Bay has allowed 100 total yards to just two running backs all year (Dalvin Cook, Brian Hill in Week 17). Shoot, only seven teams have had their running backs total 100 yards against this front! The Bucs have held opposing runners to 3.7 yards per carry in their past eight, and despite ranking first in running back receptions per game allowed (6.18), they’re sixth-best in yards per catch allowed (6.5) and 12th in receiving touchdowns per game allowed (0.18). Kamara is obviously a special player, but even he’s struggled to get even 70 total yards against the Bucs in two games this season despite five receptions in each game. I fully expect Kamara to score and get close to the number, but not over it.” — CBS Sports’ Dave Richard
Tom Brady Over 0.5 interceptions (-145) — Jordan Dajani