Fantasy Football

Tomlin’s Tips: 2021 NFL Super Wild Card Bets

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As we head into the 2021 NFL Super Wild Card Football Bets and we end the NFL regular season, we should take a look back.

While I was slightly under .500 with my NFL Best Bets, overall my profitability was off the charts. If you take every pick I made from all of the NFL games, prop bets (not including Survivor picks) and college games, Tomlin’s Tips is up 25.2 units. So if you bet $100 on every one of my picks, you are up $2,520.

As I always say, no one can make you rich. But everyone could use an extra twenty-five large!

My bowl picks were absolute fire again, standing at 15-6-1 as we enter the National Championship. So I’ll give you my pick for that game as well as dive deep into all six of the 2021 NFL Super Wild Card Football Bets.

As always, a simple disclaimer: sports betting should be entertainment. The 2021 NFL Super Wild Card Football Bets will not make you rich. Anyone with picks saying they can make you rich is a liar and I would bet against them.

The 2021 NFL Super Wild Card Football Bets will be about having fun wagering on sports while trying to stay even or break a small profit.

All of the information is up to date as of January 7th.

Tomlin’s Tips: 2021 NFL Super Wild Card Football Bets

Best NFL Bets: 3-2 last week, 40-43-1 season

Each week I will pick my five best bets for the NFL weekend. This is similar to the most famous handicapping contest in the world, The Las Vegas Supercontest, where the winner gets over a million bucks.

#2 Buffalo Bills -6 vs. #7 Indianapolis Colts

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Most of the square handicappers will be touting all of the statistics about underdogs dominating Against The Spread in this round the past few years. Dogs are 10-1-1 ATS in the last three seasons of Wild Card rounds with a net ATS margin of 7.6 points. This year is different though.

With the added wild card team, it is not just one more team slightly inferior added to the field. It has added the second-best team in the conference into this round. So this game is completely uncharted territory for round-trend purposes.

What I will focus on with this game is home-field advantage. There will not be many fans in Buffalo, but they do enjoy the largest weather advantage of any team in the league. It will be in the high 20’s Sunday in Buffalo, with 10 mph winds and a 10% chance of precipitation. That’s quite different than the friendly confines of the dome in Indy.

In fact, since the Colts moved to Indianapolis they are 0-5 straight up in the northeast and 1-9 in the north at all for playoff games. Philip Rivers is 0-3 in the playoffs in the northeast as well.

On top of that, Buffalo is still under-rated. They have covered eight straight games and won nine out of ten outright. The only loss was the Hail Mary to Arizona. Their only two other losses were to playoff teams in terrible scheduling circumstances. I think there is no question that the Bills are winning this game, so I cannot even fathom fading them with the points.

#3 Seattle Seahawks -3 vs. #6 Los Angeles Rams

This is by far my hardest pick of the weekend. If all integral players were for sure playing and healthy, I think it’s a Rams bet all day. However, Sean McVay has refused to say which quarterback is starting and that tells me all I need to know. Even if Jared Goff plays, he is nowhere near 100%.

Seattle also shares a home-field advantage better than most of the league, although the lack of fans hurts them worse. Still, I can’t ignore ten straight home playoff wins for the Seahawks. They have yet to lose a playoff game at their new stadium.

Matchup wise, Seattle has a sneaky advantage in Points Per Play. As bad as their defense has seemed, they were ranked fifth in the league in opponent’s points per play. It seemed worse because their offense scored so much and quickly that they faced more possessions/plays. The Rams were 23rd in the league in offensive points per play, even with a healthy Goff.

I think Russell Wilson is one of the only guys in the history of football that can neutralize Aaron Donald’s pass rush with his legs/anticipation. They showed just two weeks ago how than can slow the Rams’ offense and score just enough to win.

#4 Washington Football Team +8.5 vs. #5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers

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Never in my life did I think I would take an Alex Smith/Taylor Heinicke combo against Tom Brady in a playoff game, yet here we are.

You can change the quarterback, but the Tampa Bay culture is tough to diminish that quickly. The Bucs are 1-6 on the road in the playoffs all-time. Tom Brady has not won a game in this round of the playoffs since 2006.

Speaking of the ageless wonder, he is getting older and goes to bed earlier; he admits that. Since last November, in games that start at night, Brady is 1-6 SU and 0-7 ATS, losing by an average of 14 points per game against the number. That is pretty damning.

The key to the game is the dominant Washington pass rush. We saw what happened to Tampa Bay when the Bears were repeatedly in his face. Chase Young is unblockable at this point and will hurry TB12 all night.

Washington is also 4-2 ATS as a home dog this year. With such a low total it is tough to win by double digits. They have been over-coming big spreads all season and I think they keep this close enough to cover.

#5 Baltimore Ravens -3 at #4 Tennessee Titans

This is another tough one as the trends are saying one way but the matchup is saying go the other way. The Ravens have massive advantages in yards per play, points per play, and third down percentages.

Baltimore has also covered six straight games. However only one of those games was against a playoff team and it was that super weird Cleveland game where I’m pretty sure Lamar Jackson soiled himself. So how much of their stats are inflated by beating up on bad teams?

Lamar Jackson is 24-4 SU when he is favored by three points or more. He is 6-5 SU in all other circumstances. Even as a lower seed, on the road, this trend fits.



As you will see with my best over/under bet of the weekend, I’m seeing this as a shootout. Both of these teams are in the bottom third of opponents’ Red Zone touchdown percentage, while scoring touchdowns in the Red Zone in the top third of the league. There will be a ton of touchdowns and very few field goals.

So we are looking at a shootout with bigger plays leading to touchdowns. Well Baltimore is fourth in the league at converting third downs. They stay ahead of the chains with their running game leading to shorter third-down conversions. Tennessee is dead last at stopping opponents’ third downs. They easily have the worst defense in the playoffs and will not be able to duplicate last year’s upset over Baltimore.

#2 New Orleans Saints -9.5 vs. #7 Chicago Bears

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You will see how I feel in a little bit, but newsflash I like the over here. So if I like the over then the Saints are the side to go with. This is another huge homefield advantage no matter of the fans since there are fundamental differences in offensive philosophy.

New Orleans has won seven of their last nine home playoff games, the only two losses were in overtime (one they didn’t even touch the ball). Chicago has not won a road playoff game since 1994. They have just one road playoff win since 1984 and only two playoff road wins ever.

Matchup wise, the New Orleans defense is highly under-rated. Their offensive statistics are skewed down a bit because of Brees missing multiple games. However their defense has huge advantages over Chicago at several key categories.

New Orleans is seventh in opponents’ points per play, Chicago is 20th in points per play. The Saints are fourth in opponents’ yards per play, Chicago is 27th in yards per play. New Orleans is 9th in opponents’ 3rd-down conversion percentage and Chicago is next to last in the league in converting third downs. The Saints are a positive 6.55% in third-down percentage while the Bears are -3.47%.

The Saints are the top-ranked team in DVOA and the Bears are fifteenth. The Bears have just a single win against a playoff team and it was at home on a short week. New Orleans is winning this game outright, so this is another favorite or pass for me.

#3 Pittsburgh Steelers -6 vs. #6 Cleveland Browns

I’ve been harping on team history when it comes to road playoff games and the Browns are no different. They have not won a road playoff game since 1969… and that was the only one in franchise history. They are 1-10 all time in the playoffs on the road.

A more damning stat for this team deals with Baker Mayfield. Quarterbacks making their first playoff start are on a 13-32 ATS and 15-31 SU run. When you combine these trends with the COVID issues, including the Browns’ head coach/play-caller and team shutdowns, this is a Pittsburgh or pass play.

Other NFL Games Picked: 7-4 last week, 91-79-1 season

I’ll put my picks in for all of the NFL games. Some people are in pools where they pick every game each week. Home teams are in CAPS.

NFL 10-Point Teaser of the Week: 1-0 last week, 10-7 season

My brother and I’s favorite bet: you take 10 points extra either off the spread or over/under. You combine three different sides with the 10 extra points and all have to hit to win.

Bills +3.5, Buccaneers +2, and Rams/Seahawks UNDER 53.5

I don’t think either of these two teams lose outright as they are clearly the better teams in their matchups. While I do not like the total for the Rams/Seahawks game, I love it with a tease. With no idea about Jared Goff playing or not, teasing this up makes it juicy with the possibility of the backup quarterback and a slower game script.

Others I Like: Saints PK, Steelers +4, Ravens/Titans OVER 43.5, Washington/Tampa Bay UNDER 56.5, and Saints/Bears OVER 35

Game Total of the Week: 1-0 last week, 13-4 season

Tennessee Titans vs. Baltimore Ravens, OVER 53.5

Both of these teams are ranked in the top third of the league in Red Zone touchdown percentage. Both of their defenses are in the bottom third of the league in opponents’ Red Zone touchdown percentage. Tennessee has seven overs on the road this season, the only under being against the Nick Foles-led Bears.

*BONUS* Washington Football Team vs. Tampa Bay Buccaneers, UNDER 46.5

Washington has been a dead nut under team for a while, going under in five straight games and ten of their last twelve. Tampa Bay goes under whenever they face a good pass rush; just think back to that Thursday night game against Chicago. Washington will park the bus on offense and shorten this game so that old man Brady will get antsy.

**BONUS** New Orleans Saints vs. Chicago Bears, OVER 45

When Drew Brees starts and finishes a game this season the Saints’ games have gone over the total ten out of twelve times. The other two were last week against Carolina with zero running backs, and a 38-3 blowout of Tampa Bay where the Bucs stopped trying to score.

College Best Bets: 41-29-2 regular season, 15-6-1 in bowls

Alabama Crimson Tide -7 vs. Ohio State Buckeyes

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There are three main factors that have my squarely on the Crimson Tide:

1. Can the Buckeyes’ defense stop the vertical passing game of Alabama (especially if Jaylen Waddle plays)?

The dirty little secret about the Ohio State/Clemson game was that Trevor Lawrence was able to push the ball downfield a little bit (he ended up with 400 yards passing on almost nine yards per attempt). The problem was the Ohio State pass rush not giving him enough time.

Well Clemson has zero offensive linemen currently ranked in the top ten at their position by ESPN. Alabama has three. They will give Mac Jones time to press the Buckeyes’ secondary, easing up their run fits. If Jaylen Waddle plays, this amplifies this advantage even more. If he does not play, I think the Heisman Trophy winner DeVonta Smith can get the job done.

2. Can Alabama do a better job stopping the Ohio State vertical passing game?

Justin Fields averaged a ridiculous 14 yards per attempt on his way to 385 yards and six touchdowns against Clemson. This included SEVEN pass play of more than 25 yards.

While Clemson’s secondary is closer to the level of Alabama’s than their respective offensive lines, I do think Patrick Surtain II can shut down one side of the field better. The factor that gives the Tide the advantage here is game plan and coaching. I’ve seen several breakdowns that basically infer that Ohio State was running base/bland offense for the regular season, then unleashed everything they had in the semifinal. It’s almost as if they were game-planning for Clemson all season.

They do not have that luxury now and no coaching staff is better at defensive game planning than Nick Saban’s.

3. The Health of Justin Fields (and others)

While the way in which the training staff handled Fields’ injury was reprehensible, I will not get off on that tangent. I’m more worried about how healthy he is going to be Monday night. (If this game does get postponed, I will be beyond pissed that Ohio State, ONCE AGAIN, gets the rules bent in their favor.) There’s also the current outbreak of COVID cases that could limit the Buckeyes’ depth.


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If Fields is not 100% then I’m not sure how much of a chance the Buckeyes have. *Cue the Cardale Jones truthers about how Alabama does NOT want any part of an Ohio State backup quarterback.* Fields is going to be a Top-2 pick in the NFL Draft for a reason next year. With any other quarterback not already in that game last Friday in the country, Ohio State probably does not even win. Even if it’s 75% of that great a player, he is playing such a great team that it will not be enough. Roll Tide.


That’s it for the 2021 NFL Super Wild Card Football bets. Be sure to check out our NFL Playoffs’ DFS content!

About Michael Tomlin

Michael Tomlin is an ESPY-nominated, former college football player who stays associated with the game through Fantasy Sports. He has been writing his personal blog, Dirkland.blogspot.com, for three years and it focuses on Fantasy Sports, as well as handicapping. He was born and raised in the DFW Metroplex, and he follows all of the Dallas teams, along with Texas Tech athletics and Manchester City F.C.

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