Breaking matches and picking four winners in the NFL Playoffs Round


This is the motto of the NFL

NFL logo painted in the end zone. (Jane J. Bouscar/The Associated Press)

NFL writer for the Los Angeles Times, Sam FarmerCheck out this week Playoffs On the NFL tour. Lines by FanDuel. Last week’s record was 4-2. Using the spreads with the scores Farmer predicted, the record vs. last week’s spread would be 1-5. All times in the Pacific:

No. 4 Jacksonville at No. 1 Kansas City

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes prepares to pass.

The Jaguars will need to put pressure on quarterback Patrick Mahomes if they hope to create an upset on the road. (Ed Zorga/The Associated Press)

when: Saturday, 1:30 p.m., Channel 4. Line: 8½ heads.

How Jaguar can win: Reduce turnover. Four interceptions in the first half will never be survivable again. Get this action game and take some shots in the field. Defensively, go to Patrick Mahomes. Jacksonville pass rusher Josh Allen needs to have a busy day. Bags aren’t necessary, but keep Mahomes out of his spots.

How bosses can win: Lean on Mahomes. Don’t rush into the big game, because you’ve been patient and methodical all season. This offense can reliably be at or close to 30 points. Defensive coordinator Steve Spagnolo loves offense. See if he can overwhelm Trevor Lawrence and force him into some transformations. Depends on who you’ve been all season.

pluck or pluck: The Chiefs must win, but the game could be closer than many people expect. The Jaguars are well-balanced offensively, and they believe in themselves, especially after that historic comeback against the Chargers. 30 Chiefs Jaguars 24

No. 6 New York Giants at No. 1 Philadelphia

Eagles receiver DeVonta Smith (6) passes Giants' Jarrad Davis (57) and safety Jason Pinnock.

Eagles receiver DeVonta Smith (6) passes New York Giants’ Jarrad Davis (57) and safety Jason Pinnock (27) in the regular season finale. He also scored a goal in a fourth-place game against New York. (Chris Zagola/The Associated Press)

when: Saturday at 5:15 p.m. Channel 11. Line: Eagles 7½.

How the Giants can win: Believe what they do. They have a group of men no one in this receiving corps has ever heard of. Give the ball to Saquon Barkley, and let Daniel Jones do whatever it takes to win the game, whether it’s using his arms or his legs. Break free from these impulsive youth. Cut down on the Philadelphia running game and hit the Jalen Hurts.

How the Eagles can win: Establish the race and don’t put all the pressure on Hurts. Throw in the big shows when they’re there. The Eagles take their deep shots every week. Shield Hurts so he can sit down and pull the defenses apart. Let some deeper ways develop. Devonta Smith, for example, can’t be unveiled. AJ Brown is still the man. Defensively, do whatever it takes to stop the run.

pluck or pluck: The Eagles are fresh off a week off. This is the twenty-fifth time that a team that swept a season series has met that division’s opponent in the playoffs. In these instances, teams have won 2-0 in 15 of the third 24 ties. Division game, so it’s closer than many expect. 24 Giants 21

No. 3 Cincinnati at No. 2 Buffalo

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (17) passes against the Cincinnati Bengals on January 2.

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (17) passes a pass against the Cincinnati Bengals on January 2. (Joshua Bickle/The Associated Press)

when: Sunday, noon, channel two. Line: bills by 4½.

How the Bengals could win: Run it enough. Don’t count on Joe Bure coming back as much as he has all season. Bengals must be able to work the bills. Try to mitigate offensive line injuries. The Bills aren’t as good without Von Miller, but they can still chase after passers. Defensively, stop running and tap Josh Allen to be the hero.

How you can win Bills: Stop running and turn up the heat on Burrow. The more bills you get, the more likely they are to be forced into rotation. The Bills can exploit Cincinnati’s injuries along the offensive line. Bengals are particularly weak at tackles. Attack, reduce turnover. Stop messing around in the red. Remember, it’s okay to kick the goal now and then.

pluck or pluck: The Bengals have significant limitations both up front and in corners. Bills should take advantage of that. The Bills got a scare last week and that should sharpen their focus. They have the momentum and the crowd behind them. 24- Hamada

No. 5 Dallas at No. 2 San Francisco

San Francisco 49ers running back Christian McCaffrey, 23, runs into an open field.

San Francisco 49ers’ Christian McCaffrey has been making the difference since his season-ending acquisition of the Carolina Panthers. (Godofredo A. Vasquez/The Associated Press)

when: Sunday, 3:30 p.m., Channel 11. Line: 49ers by 3½.

How Cowboys Can Win: Set up Dak Prescott’s passing game by running the ball effectively. Run some screens, and get Tony Pollard into space. If Prescott plays the way he did against Tampa Bay, and isn’t the interception machine he’s been this season, then Dallas has a chance. Defensively, he tried to slow the run and make Brock Purdy look like a one-time starter.

How the 49ers can win: Keep doing what they’re doing. the 49ers They can run, developing creative ways to get the ball Christian McCaffreyhands, and you must be amazed at how well the Purdy does. Maintain that defensive confidence. This team has won 11 games in a row and should continue to act like this.

pluck or pluck: The 49ers have the advantage across the board. Defensively, the 49ers are a bit too fast. Purdy has yet to crack — how was the last pick in the draft? — and adding McCaffrey to the offense, which includes Debo Samuel, George Keitel, and Brandon Ayuk, just doesn’t seem fair. 49ERS 27, Cowboys 21

This story originally appeared Los Angeles Times.



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