NFL Wild Card Round Predictions and Expert Picks for Sunday’s Games: Back the Packers and Rams as Underdogs?

We have a two-game slate of playoff games Sunday, and our betting experts give out their best bets in our NFL Wild Card Round predictions.

We have a two-game slate of NFL playoff games today, which means tons of options to bet on.

In our NFL Wild Card Round predictions, our betting experts give their favorite bets for today’s games, with picks against the spread, player props, and more.

NFL Wild Card Round Predictions: Sunday Games

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Packers vs. Cowboys Predictions

  • Spread
    Cowboys -7
  • Moneyline
    Packers +270, Cowboys -340
  • Total

Blewis: The biggest mismatch in this game is easily the Cowboys’ offense playing at home against the Packers’ defense.

In the regular season, Dallas averaged 37.4 points per game at home, which was nearly six points better than the next closest team. Prescott was particularly sensational at home, throwing for 308.8 yards per game, 22 touchdowns, and just three interceptions, with a QB rating of 120.0.

In eight home games, he threw for over 400 more yards, eight more touchdowns, had half as many interceptions, and his yards per attempt was almost two yards higher than in nine road starts.

While this Cowboys offense is matchup-proof at home, they get a Packers defense that was one of the worst in the NFL during the regular season.

Since Joe Barry has been their defensive coordinator, this has pretty much been the story every season in Green Bay.

Considering they cleared this number in all but one home game during the regular season, and the Cowboys’ playoff woes don’t start until the Divisional Round, I’m going to take the over on their team total of 29.5 points.

Pick: Cowboys over 29.5 (-116 at FanDuel)

Bearman: With all due respect to Love and the great season the Packers have had, the Cowboys are just better, especially at home.

Dallas was a perfect 8-0 at home this season, winning six of those games by 20 or more. CeeDee Lamb might be the best wide receiver in the game, and that’s a tall list.

MORE: NFL Playoff Bracket

Prescott has this team rolling at home, and I just don’t see the Packers keeping up.

Green Bay deserves all the credit in the world for making it to the dance, but they won’t beat Dallas in Arlington, and it shouldn’t be fairly close.

Pick: Cowboys -7 (-110 at FanDuel)

Soppe: We get a hot Packers team traveling to Dallas to face a Cowboys team that has had their moments this season looking like the best team in the league.

For me, this is the matchup with the widest range of outcomes, given the peaks and valleys we’ve seen from both of these teams.

Since Halloween, the Packers have lost just one game by 8+ points, and it required Baker Mayfield to post a perfect QB rating at Lambeau, the first-ever such performance. And even then, the Packers had the ball on Tampa Bay’s 30-yard line with a chance to get within seven points on their final possession.

The Cowboys have had their fair share of blowouts in both directions. For the season, they’ve been outscored by 16 points when facing playoff teams. Yes, the blowouts factor into that, but the wide range of outcomes is something that I’m betting on in taking the points with an upward-trending Love-led Packers team.

Pick: Packers +7.5 (-120 at ESPN BET)

Rolfe: The Cowboys, when favored at home, have been a virtual lock this season, barring one entertaining game with the Seattle Seahawks. Dallas has the better offense, and the better defense, but also has the superior ability to choke at the worst moments historically.

Despite that, I am still backing the Cowboys in what should be a high-scoring game. I just don’t want to back them giving away a touchdown, so let’s go for another teaser here.

Pick: Cowboys -1.5, over 44.5 (-120 at DraftKings)

Katz: For the better part of the second half of the regular season, Jayden Reed has been the Green Bay Packers’ WR1. In his final three games of the season, Reed’s lowest receiving yardage total was 52.

The Dallas Cowboys have a great defense. But Love is going to be able to complete passes. Where the Cowboys struggle the most is defending the slot. Reed runs 68% of his routes from the slot.

With the Cowboys installed as touchdown favorites, we can reasonably project a negative game script for the Packers. A total of 49 yards is a low bar for Reed to cross.

Pick: Jayden Reed over 48.5 receiving yards (-115 at DraftKings)

Rams vs. Lions Predictions

  • Spread
    Lions -3
  • Moneyline
    Rams +150, Lions -175
  • Total

Soppe: The Matthew Stafford Bowl figures to be a fun one in a city that hasn’t had a playoff game during the lifetime of many of its featured players. The Rams elected to rest essentially everyone last week while the Lions fought for the slim chance of moving up to the No. 2 seed, a mission that failed and resulted in star rookie TE Sam LaPorta getting banged up.

Los Angeles has lost one game since its Week 10 bye, and it was a game in Baltimore that they were leading by five at the two-minute warning. Detroit has played better of late, but the Lions do own a -1.5 average point differential against winning teams this season, with the majority of those games being decided by a single possession.

This game figures to be tight, so I’ll take the points. The Lions boast the fourth-worst red-zone defense in the league this season, a potential issue in a game with the highest total of this round.

Pick: Rams +3 (-105 at ESPN BET)

Bearman: I’ve been on the Rams all season and successfully cashed the over on their win total (5.5). Sean McVay won’t win Coach of the Year, but he deserves consideration for getting this Rams team to bounce back after a five-win season in 2022.

The Lions are one of the best teams in football, no doubt, but do you know what they don’t have? Playoff experience. Especially in comparison to the Rams.

Stafford, Cooper Kupp, Puka Nacua, Kyren Williams, and Aaron Donald should be able to keep the Rams in this one and potentially lead them to an outright upset.

Pick: Rams +3 (-105 at ESPN BET)

Blewis: I’m also on the Rams here, but now that the three of us are all on the same side, I’m a bit nervous.

The Lions have been a great story this season, winning the NFC North for the first time in franchise history (their last division title was when they played in the “NFC Central”), and they will be hosting their first playoff game since 1994. But I like the Rams getting points here, and I was surprised to see this line open as high as Lions -5 at DraftKings (I grabbed Rams +4.5 before it dropped).

When the Rams’ offense is completely healthy, they have been one of the best units in the NFL this season, and they’ll be facing a Lions defense that was 26th in EPA/play after their bye in Week 9.

I’m not necessarily picking the Rams to win, but I don’t trust the Lions’ defense to make enough stops to prevent this from being a close game.

Pick: Rams +3 (-105 at ESPN BET)

Rolfe: This is going to be an emotionally charged game, with the Detroit Lions hosting a rare playoff game and Stafford back in the building.

The Lions’ coaching staff has been getting a lot of attention for vacant head coaching roles, and with all the excitement, there is a risk of this game slipping past them.

The Lions made the Vikings’ offense look effective in two of the last three weeks, but their offense is also more than useful. This game screams high scoring, so my top pick is the over, but I may well also play the Ram’s ML.

Pick: Over 51.5 (-110 at ESPN BET)

Katz: David Montgomery is a way better running back than I initially gave him credit for. But one thing he is not is explosive.

Montgomery is a power back. He can get you four, five, six yards, but he’s not the type to bust out a 15+ yard rush. In the regular season, just 3.7% of his carries went for 15+ yards.

While the Los Angeles Rams are not the best against the run, they are above average, allowing 4.1 yards per carry. More importantly, they’re a pass-funnel defense. This could be the type of game where the Lions are more apt to air it out and use Jahmyr Gibbs, limiting Montgomery to short-yardage and more obvious run situations. He could still have a nice game without any long runs.

Pick: David Montgomery’s longest rush under 13.5 rushing yards (-122 at FanDuel)

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