The Denver Broncos have won 11 straight games. The Ravens are coming off an inspired playoff win at home, but enter the game as big underdogs. Do they have a chance to win this game? Can they cover the point spread? Let's take a closer look at this Saturday match-up.
Prior to the Wild Card round, Vegas put up a theoretical point spread for every potential Divisional Round match-up. For the Ravens/Broncos, they put up a line of -7. At that number I would have made Denver an official pick this week, but when things re-opened for betting on Sunday night the Broncos were listed at -9.5 (odds from SBRforum). That's not a number I want to get involved with, but it's also not inflated enough to come in on the underdog either. The true point spread for this game should be Broncos -7.5.
Do the Ravens Have a Chance?
In a word, no.
Ray Lewis is retiring, but what difference will that make? Can Andrew Luck sour to new heights? Let's take a closer look at the first Sunday playoff game.
When it comes to playoff point spreads, nothing is much of a surprise. The books usually do a great job at finding a sharp line that spreads public (and sharp) opinion. However, what we have here is one of the most intriguing lines of the weekend. They opened up with the Ravens as -6.5 point favorites and it's taken almost the full week before we've seen any hints of movement. Right now, books are creeping towards -7, but you'll have to lay a little extra juice depending on what side you like.What strikes me is that the line didn't move to -7 when the lines were posted last Sunday. This is a clear indication that nobody with a clue respects the Ravens that much. In fact, I'm surprised that they opened up this high. I'll gladly pay a little extra and buy an affordable +7 to take a chance on Andrew Luck and company (odds from SBRforum).
The Bengals are souring. The Texans are tanking. Is that all there is too it? Let's dive in and take a closer look at the first playoff game of the weekend.
It was only logical for the Texans to settle in as -4.5 point favorites for this game. The line opened up at the "dead" number of -5, but early action came in on the underdog. There was a point where the line fell all the way to -4 at one point, but it didn't last long given that it's a key number (odds from SBRforum).Where is money going to go in the final couple days? If anything, I'd expect more money coming in on the Bengals given the way both teams have played down the stretch. This line could close at -4, but I'd be surprised if we saw a ton of movement either way.
Bengals Are a No-Brainer?
Andrew Luck's Receiving Corps Led By Reggie Wayne And T.Y. Hilton Are Biggest Reason For Colts' Resurgence
This time last year, the Colts were sitting at 2-14, no Peyton Manning, and an impending free agency with which the Colts had to solve a number of problems, particulary at quarterback. And they solved that with the No. 1 overall pick in the form of quarterback Andrew Luck.
But the next step was to re-tool a receiving corps that was non-existent in 2011. And many pass over exactly what this receiving corps accomplished with Luck in 2012, and what this group consisted of.
The biggest surprise of this group was veteran Reggie Wayne, but not because of his production (1,355 receiving yards and five touchdowns), but because of the fact that he stuck around Indy despite the big regime changes, and despite the widely held rumors that he would follow former Colts quarterback Peyton Manning to whatever team he signed with in free agency. The 11-year veteran always gets the biggest label in this receiving corps, but this group was more than this future NFL Hall of Famer.
NFL.com's Kevin Patra has reported that former Philadelphia Eagles boss Andy Reid could be close to becoming the new head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs.
Apparently, Reid enjoyed a productive, nine-hour interview regarding the Chiefs vacancy. Reid is a sought-after prospect on the coaching market, despite ending his tenure in Philadelphia with two disastrous seasons.
Overloaded with high-priced, underperforming stars, Reid's Eagles won just 12 games in the last two years. This season they finished 4-12, Reid's worst ever finish as a head coach.
It marked a sad ending to an otherwise distinguished coaching reign. Reid guided the Eagles to 10 playoff wins, five NFC Championship games and one Super Bowl berth.
His ability to rebuild a losing team into a consistent contender, should appeal to the Chiefs. The franchise has suffered three losing seasons out of the last four.