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2023 NFL divisional playoff picks: Giants shock Eagles, Cowboys upset 49ers,


I’d like to start things off today by apologizing to the NFL. When they decided to change the name of “Wild Card Weekend” to “Super Wild Card Weekend,” I thought it was going to be the biggest marketing failure since Crystal Clear Pepsi, but I was wrong, because the football we got over the weekend was Super Wild. 

That being said, if anyone from Pepsi is reading, can you bring back the crystal clear stuff, because I actually liked it. One thing I don’t like though is trying to pick games in the divisional round. The key to picking divisional games is to not overthink it, which could be tough for me because I overthink everything. I mean, I once spent four days thinking over a chess move and I wasn’t even playing anyone.

The reason you don’t want to overthink things in the divisional round is because the home team usually dominates. Over the past 10 years, home teams have gone 29-11, which basically means we’re getting an average of roughly one upset per year, which means I should probably pick at least one upset this week. 

On the other hand, home teams went 1-3 last year, so maybe I need to get wild and pick all upsets. Crap. I literally just told myself not to overthink my picks this week and here we are, one paragraph later, and I’m already overthinking them. 

So will I actually pick any upsets this week? Let’s get to the picks and find out. 

Actually, before we get to the picks, here’s a quick reminder that you can check out the weekly picks from every CBSSports.com NFL expert by clicking here. If you click over, you’ll notice that I went 5-1, which I would brag about, but I can’t, because two of our guys went 6-0. 

If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to hang out with me and watch football, then make sure you head to our Pick Six YouTube page. I go live on YouTube with Will Brinson and Ryan Wilson after every playoff game and it’s a good place to make fun me for missing picks.  

Alright, I’m going to quit stalling so we can get to the picks. 

Divisional round picks

No. 4 Jacksonville (10-8) at No. 1 Kansas City (14-3)

Saturday, 4:30 p.m. ET (NBC) 

Featured Game | Kansas City Chiefs vs. Jacksonville Jaguars

I think I’ve said this before, but I’m going to say it again, there are three guarantees in life: Death, taxes and Andy Reid winning off the bye. Since I’m not dead and I haven’t paid taxes since 2001, I don’t know much about those first two things, but I do know enough to never pick against Reid when his team is coming off a bye. 

In his 24-year coaching career, Reid is 28-5 coming off a bye, including playoff games. He’s been so unbeatable that Ryan Wilson, Will Brinson and I once wrote a song about it. However, as you’ll notice below, we didn’t put much effort into singing it or writing it, and it’s not very catchy. 

Hopefully, Rihanna will sing our song at the Super Bowl halftime show so that America will finally be able fully appreciate our musical genius. 

As for Reid’s success off the bye, if you only include the games where Reid has had Patrick Mahomes, then he’s actually even better. Mahomes has a career record of 9-1 off the bye and the Chiefs have averaged 30.1 points in those 10 games. 

Of course, if there’s one person who can beat Andy Reid coming off a bye, it might just be Doug Pederson and that’s because he knows Reid better than anyone. The Jaguars coach spent 10 years with Reid, including three as a player in Green Bay (1997-99) and seven as an assistant coach, with four of those coming in Philadelphia (2009-12) and three in Kansas City (2013-15). In short, Pederson is not going to be intimidated going into Kansas City and he’s not going be intimidated by the fact that people are writing songs about Andy Reid.

The Jaguars have enough firepower to keep this close as long as Trevor Lawerence doesn’t do anything crazy, you know, like throw four interceptions in the first half. Although I think the Jags will be able to hang with the Chiefs, I can’t pick the upset here. My main issue with the Jags is that their biggest weakness on defense is stopping tight ends and that’s not a weakness you want to have when you’re facing Kansas City’s offense. 

The Jaguars surrendered 1,087 receiving yards to tight ends this year and 13.1 yards per reception to tight ends, which were both the third-worst in the NFL. Travis Kelce might have 300 receiving yards by the time this game is over. If the Jags go all-out trying to shut down Kelce, then that will almost certainly open other things up for everyone…



Read More: 2023 NFL divisional playoff picks: Giants shock Eagles, Cowboys upset 49ers,

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