The dust has finally settled after a wild opening round of playoff football in the NFL. The NFC East has advanced two teams through to the next round, with the Dallas Cowboys beating the Seattle Seahawks in Dallas by a score of 24-22, and the Philadelphia Eagles getting the W in Chicago over the Bears, 16-15. Despite the big wins, the bookies don’t like either team in the next round, with both teams coming into the weekend as huge underdogs.
The reigning Super Bowl champs are getting no love this week, with most major sportsbooks having the Eagles as the biggest underdog in the next round. Bovada.com has the Eagles +290 on the moneyline, and looking at a +9 spread. The Eagles have been underdogs in all five of the last five postseason games that they’ve played, all of which they have won. The Saints are the team that is favored by the sportsbooks. New Orleans was able to rest Drew Brees and other key players, who will have two weeks rest compared to no week rest for the Eagles.
With their win over the Bears, the Eagles have now won six of their last seven games, with the only loss being an Overtime battle with Dallas. Despite the odds being drawn against them, the Eagles will feel no pressure coming into Sunday's game. Look for Philly to play New Orleans closer than the bookies are predicting, and don’t be surprised if they take the win themselves.
The second biggest betting underdog of the divisional round is the Cowboys. The Cowboys travel to LA to play the LA Chargers, and are +255 on the moneyline. These odds put them as major underdogs, with a $100 bet bringing in a $355 collect on a Cowboys win. These odds are risky, but worth a consideration. The Cowboys are playing their best football at the right time, and the LA Rams have shown vulnerability throughout the year.
Keep an eye on the Eagles and Cowboys this weekend, and see if one or both are able to play the underdog role and take out the big favorites this weekend.