Here's a look at the latest updated odds on this weekend's NFL playoff games according to Spreads.ca:
SAT: 8:15 ET / 5:15 PT
LA CHARGERS (-2.5) at JACKSONVILLE
Even though LA Chargers have the better season W-L record, Jacksonville hosts the playoff game since they won their division, whereas the Chargers were a Wild Card team.
Both teams are riding hot streaks coming into the playoffs: The Jags have rolled off 5 straight wins; The Chargers had 4 straight wins before losing a meaningless season finale.
This is a rematch of one of the most shocking games of the year. Back in Week 3, Jacksonville destroyed the Chargers 38-10 in Los Angeles.
The Chargers went through a season of ups and down, including some key injuries that wiped out any chance to catch Kansas City in the AFC West. So, the Chargers have to be pleased with this spot. They are 7-2-1 ATS in their last 10 games. The Chargers were 11-5-1 ATS overall this season, one of the best betting results in the league. The Chargers are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 games on the road. Finally, the Chargers are 9-2 SU in their last 11 games as the favorite.
They're laying a point (-2.5) in this game.
As for the Jaguars, they are 2-10 ATS in their last 12 games against the LA Chargers. But we can probably dismiss this stat since this is not the same old bad Jaguars we've been used to seeing. The Jaguars were only 8-9 ATS overall this season. However, under first-year head coach (and a previous Super Bowl winner, with the Eagles) Doug Peterson, the Jags made a major turnaround and went 6-3 ATS in their final nine games.
This is the first playoff game for both QBs. Justin Herbert enjoyed the more consistent season. However, the Jaguars field the superior rushing attack. Let's give the edge to Peterson over Staley in coaching. Some reports have surfaced that (often criticized) Staley is out if he doesn't win this game. Not sure what impact that will have if it's true.
The Chargers are the more talented team. For this reason, we'll take them and lay -1.
What we saw from the Jaguars last week in that must-win game against the Titans was alarming. It took a late defensive touchdown to win the game. The Jags had the benefit of playing some really bad offenses in their final three games -- HOU, NYJ, and TEN. When they face strong passing attacks, it's a different story.
Justin Herbert has been waiting for this game for a couple of years after being anointed as the franchise savior, so the pressure is on to win and advance. We're not sure that same urgency exists with Jacksonville, which is likely happy just to be here in the playoffs.
Of course, these premonitions don't matter once the ball is kicked off, but there's enough confidence here to take the Chargers.
LA Chargers -2.5 (-110)