Bills vs. Jaguars Prediction
Will the Jacksonville Jaguars boat race the Buffalo Bills this afternoon when the two teams meet in the Wild Card round of the NFL playoffs? Kickoff is set for 1:05 p.m. ET.
WHO ODDSMAKERS LIKE: Jacksonville. According to oddsmakers from online sports book Bovada.lv, the Jaguars are 8.5-point home favorites to beat the Bills, who opened as 7.5-point underdogs. As for the total, the number hit the board at 40 but has been bet down slightly to 39.5.
WHO PUBLIC BETTORS LIKE: Jacksonville. As of this writing, the Jaguars are receiving 52% of the betting tickets and 57% of the money to cover the spread.
WHO THE TRENDS: Buffalo and the over. The Bills are 5-2 against the spread in their last seven games in Jacksonville while the road team is also 5-2 at the betting window in the last seven meetings between these two teams. The over is also a perfect 5-0 in the last five meetings between these two teams.
WHO WE LIKE: Jacksonville. This is a total mismatch to me. Some bettors are fading a Blake Bortles-led team, which is understandable. But the Jags won a lot of games this season by basically circumventing Bortles and that should be the case again today.
For starters, the Bills allowed a NFL-worst 18 rushing touchdowns since trading Marcell Dareus prior to Week 8. They’re allowing a whopping 148.7 yards per game during that stretch, which is the second-most in the league. Thus, if Leonard Fournette is tearing up Buffalo’s front seven Bortles won’t have to do much.
Furthermore, if LeSean McCoy (ankle, questionable) is less than 100% of doesn’t play, I don’t see how the Bills score. McCoy was responsible for 33 percent of his team’s scrimmage yards, which was the second-highest percentage in the league behind the Rams’ Todd Gurley (36%).
This is how I see this game playing out: The Bills won’t be able to run, the Jaguars will grab a lead, then suffocate Tyrod Taylor in the second half. He was sacked on 9.1% of his dropbacks this season, the second-highest percentage in the league behind the Colts’ Jacoby Brissett (9.3%).
NFL WILD CARD PREDICTION: JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS -8.5