NFL Playoff Odds & Preview: Making the Case For the Colts vs. the Bills
Indy might be able to control games on the ground now
This year’s edition of the Buffalo Bills looks different than last year’s. They are, for one thing, more wide-open on offense.
And it’s funny we say that, because the Indianapolis Colts are also different, in the respect that they have a veteran at quarterback. Yet they are seeking to be LESS wide-open. Philip Rivers has done it all and seen it all, and he’s fitting what Frank Reich wants to do just fine. And what Reich wants to do is pound the rock a little, or maybe a lot.
The Bills and Colts meet in the AFC Wild Card round of the playoffs on Saturday afternoon at 1:05 PM ET. The site is Bills Stadium in Orchard Park, NY.
And keep in mind that at BetAnySports, you will have the opportunity for better odds through reduced juice. And if you want to keep the action going, you can take advantage of Sports Betting Prime and do it all day long.
Buffalo Bills vs. Indianapolis Colts Wild Card Odds
|Colts||+6½ (-110)||51 (-109)||+245|
|Bills||-6½ (-110)||51 (-111)||-300|
Let’s try and make a case for the Colts to cover in this game. We’re not sure we have to strain ourselves too much.
Colts are getting balanced
Indianapolis acquired Philip Rivers in the off-season, to give their quarterback situation a more veteran look. And it was the intention of head coach Frank Reich to achieve more balance in the offense – something the p;air had not necessarily done when Reich was the offensive coordinator in San Diego.
But in this instance, they have been able to do it, thanks to rookie Jonathan Taylor. A workhorse at Wisconsin who was drafted in the second round, Taylor really came on in the second half of the season. And in the finale against Jacksonville, he ran for 253 yards. He wound up finishing third in the NFL in rushing. And it took some pressure off Rivers, who has a 1-3 record as a starter when he throws the ball 40 or more times.
It is less problematic to do things this way when you have a good offensive line. And the Colts are outstanding up front, with a group led by All-Pro guard Quenton Nelson. These guys protected Rivers well, allowing him to be sacked only 16 times.
Are the Bills too one-dimensional?
It is understandable that with Josh Allen emerging as a real star at quarterback for the Bills, the passing game is getting more emphasis. That is, in fact, the case.
Buffalo has run the ball only 39.8% of the time, which is 20th in the NFL. Their leading rusher is Devin Singletary, who is just 25th in the league with 687 yards. Actually, Allen himself may be the biggest rushing threat. That’s because opponents don’t know when he is going to run with the ball.
With a greater level of predictability, it might be a bit less complicated for the Colts’ defense to deal with. And speaking of that…..
Defense: Advantage Indy?
Buffalo spent a lot of resources upgrading the offense. And one of the moves was to acquire Stefon Diggs, who went on to lead the league in receptions and receiving yardage. But sometimes that compromises the amount of resources you expend on defense. And in the case of the Bills, they have suffered a bit of a decline on the stop end.
They have surrendered 4.6 yards per rushing attempt, which could conceivably make them vulnerable to what the Colts want to do.
Meanwhile, Indianapolis has done a good job overall on defense, and they have largely depended on getting turnovers from the opposition. In fact, their stop unit is second best in the league this season in turnovers created per drive.
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