American Football Expert & Columnist
Join Neil and Jeff for Super Wild Card Weekend, with six live playoff games stretched out over three nights, starting with the Las Vegas Raiders at the Cinncinati Bengals, live on Sky Sports NFL from 9.30pm on Saturday night
Last Updated: 13/01/22 8:26pm
The NFL playoffs are here! And so it’s time to make some predictions, with Neil Reynolds and Jeff Reinebold battling it out once more as they make their game picks for Super Wild Card Weekend.
As well as hosting Inside The Huddle on Sky Sports NFL every Tuesday at 9pm, Neil and Jeff release a weekly audio edition of ITH every Wednesday in which they make their game picks.
Neil emerged victorious (175-168) in the regular season, despite Jeff eating into his advantage with a two-game swing in his favour in Week 18 as he correctly called victories for the Cleveland Browns over the Cincinnati Bengals, and San Francisco 49ers over the Los Angeles Rams. Can Jeff continue the feel-good factor as they make their game picks for the opening round of the NFL playoffs?
2021 Prediction Results
|Neil Reynolds||Jeff Reinebold|
Click on the link below to listen to this week’s ITH podcast, and read on to see Neil and Jeff’s Super Wild Card Weekend predictions…
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Las Vegas Raiders @ Cincinnati Bengals
Saturday, live on Sky Sports NFL, 9.30pm
NEIL PICKS: Bengals
“These two teams met in Vegas in Week 11 and the Bengals won handily, 32-13.
“This is going to come down to what goes on in the trenches – does Joe Burrow have time to throw against Maxx Crosby and that Raiders pass rush? If he does, then Cincy have too much for them.
“I’m picking the Bengals at home. I really like the look of this team, they are star-studded on offense.”
JEFF PICKS: Bengals
“Somebody on the Raiders is going to have to cover Ja’Marr Chase and that bunch of receivers they’ve got at the Bengals. And I don’t see anybody in that Raiders secondary who can do it.
“I think Burrow might light it up in this game. I’m taking Cincinnati.”
New England Patriots @ Buffalo Bills
Saturday night, live on Sky Sports NFL, 1.15am (Sunday)
NEIL PICKS: Bills
“These AFC East rivals meet for the third time this season. The Patriots won 14-10 in Buffalo, while attempting just three passes! But the Bills won the return leg in New England 33-21, with Jos Allen playing really well.
“Buffalo are so flaky, they worry me, but there have also been chinks in New England’s armour down the stretch – they’ve lost three of their last four – and I just feel like Buffalo have too much firepower, so I’m backing them to win this one.”
JEFF PICKS: Bills
“I’m going to take Buffalo for the same reason. Too much firepower, they’re starting to get their run game going and their receivers are getting healthy too.”
Philadelphia Eagles @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Sunday, live on Sky Sports NFL, 6pm
NEIL PICKS: Buccaneers
“The run game is Philadelphia’s formula – with Jalen Hurts a big part of that – and they’ll look to play keep-away against Tom Brady and the Bucs, who are banged up. Even so, Tampa can still go on these scoring flurries where they suddenly put up 35-40 points.
“It has to be the Bucs at home. The Eagles are a nice story, but they are 0-7 against teams with a winning record this season.”
JEFF PICKS: Buccaneers
“I agree. Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni has done a really good job, in a tough situation, but they’re going up against a really good defense in Tampa Bay.”
San Francisco 49ers @ Dallas Cowboys
Sunday, live on Sky Sports NFL, 9.30pm
NEIL PICKS: 49ers
“Dallas are a powerhouse offensively, and they’re at home. But, in this craziest of NFL seasons, surely the favourites cannot win every one of these playoff games?
“And the 49ers can dial up some creativity on offense, they’re physical too in the way run the football, and so I’m backing San Francisco to win on the road.”
JEFF PICKS: Cowboys
“Here is where I’m going to differ from you. This game is close enough that I’m happy to ride with Dallas and not feel like I’m just throwing darts at the wall.
“I think this is going to be an amazing battle to watch between 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan and Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn. Here are two guys who know each other really well, they worked together in Atlanta with the Falcons.
“I think the decisive factor is going to be quarterback play and, if you ask me, which of these two quarterbacks in a pressurised situation can deliver, I’m going to take Dak Prescott over Jimmy Garoppolo.”
Pittsburgh Steelers @ Kansas City Chiefs
Sunday night, live on Sky Sports NFL, 1.15am (Monday)
NEIL PICKS: Chiefs
“The Steelers are a nice story, sneaking into the playoffs – but I don’t think they make any noise now they are here. They lost to the Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium on Boxing Day 36-10! And Kansas City could, conceivably, have scored 50 plus in the game; it was one of the most abject performances I’ve ever seen from the Steelers under head coach Mike Tomlin.
JEFF PICKS: Chiefs
“Pittsburgh don’t have enough in their secondary to handle all of the Chiefs’ weapons.
“What a great story it would be if somehow Ben Roethlisberger became Benjamin Button in this one. But I think the only noise that the Steelers are going to make in this game is the one you make when you get your butt kicked.
Arizona Cardinals @ Los Angeles Rams
Monday night, live on Sky Sports NFL, 1.15am (Tuesday)
NEIL PICKS: Rams
“Arizona won in Los Angeles 37-20 in Week Four – the Cardinals are actually 8-1 on the road this year, so this won’t phase them – but the Rams won the return leg in Arizona 30-23 in mid-December.
“The Rams are coming off that Week 18 loss to San Francisco, but the Cards have lost four of their last five, going on a slide at the worst possible time.
“I think we’ll see some moments of Kyler Murray magic in this one, but I think the Rams will ultimately have too much for an out-of-form Arizona.”
JEFF PICKS: Cardinals
“If the Rams don’t go to the Super Bowl, everyone is going to point to their quarterback, Matthew Stafford, and say he threw too many interceptions. But when will somebody call out their defensive coordinator Raheem Morris?
“This is an elite group of athletes on defense; Jalen Ramsey, Aaron Donald, Leonard Floyd, Von Miller. But that defense has given up 30 and 23 in the two games against the Cardinals this year, and gave up a 17-point lead last week to a division rival.
“I’m going to take Arizona to win this one.”
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Source : Sky Sports