The New York Giants and the Green Bay Packers are set to square off in NFL playoff betting action this week at Lambeau Field. But before you make your NFL picks for the big game on Sunday, check out some of the great NFL betting trends that we have for the duel!
New York Giants Notes: All year long, it was the New York defense that kept finding ways to let the team down. This unit actually allowed more points in the regular season than the offense scored, and that’s saying something for a unit that nearly got 5,000 passing yards from QB Eli Manning and has two monsters on the ground in RBs Ahmad Bradshaw and Brandon Jacobs. The G-Men played a fantastic game defensively against the Falcons on Sunday, posting a de facto shutout in the 24-2 victory. The win was yet another impressive game on a schedule that was brutal this year. Though the Giants did only end up playing four games against playoff teams, going 1-3 SU and ATS, they also played two games against the .500 Philadelphia Eagles, two against the .500 Dallas Cowboys, and one against the .500 New York Jets, and three of those games were on the road. New York has covered five out of six dating back to the beginning of December.
The much maligned New York secondary only allowed two pass plays of 20 yards or more against one of the most high flying offenses, that of the Falcons on Sunday. This unit ended up allowing 255.1 yards per game through the air, and it was torched by a number of the best passing games in the league. However, we have to remember that the unit has gotten better and better as the season has progressed, especially with each rep that rookie DB Prince Amukamara gets. Don’t rest on this unit, which will surely be tested by the Green Bay passing game in this one in a big time way.
S Deon Grant ended up missing out on a good chunk of the game against the Falcons, and his status is certainly up in the air at best for this week’s game, but there are certainly some other injury situations to watch for Big Blue. Though both DEs Osi Umenyiora and Justin Tuck played on Sunday, they are both still clearly not over their respective injuries, and that only adds to a list that already includes a slew of players that have been of injured reserve for quite some time this year.
Green Bay Packers Notes: Is this the best team in the history of the NFL? The argument could certainly be made that that is the case. The Packers only blew a perfect 16-0 regular season thanks to a shocking loss at the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 15, but if you take that defeat away, this team was absolutely ridiculous this season. The Packers outscored their first 13 foes by the average score of 36-17, and even in the last week of the season with QB Aaron Rodgers on the sidelines, they were able to beat the Detroit Lions, a legitimate playoff team this season in Week 17. Green Bay went 11-5 ATS this season, and it covered some big time games, like one at home against the New Orleans Saints, the two games against the Detroit Lions, the two against the Chicago Bears, and some stout challenges against the Denver Broncos and San Diego Chargers. The only playoff team that was able to beat the spread this year against the Pack was none other than these Giants on December 4th, a game which we will walk about in just a second.
The only knack on this Green Bay team is that it can’t run the football that well and that it ranked dead last in the league in pass defense. Don’t think that these two items couldn’t come back to haunt it in the playoffs, and certainly in this game. We’ve already seen Manning do some outstanding things before, and if the Packers end up in a spot where they have to kill the clock on the ground, RBs Ryan Grant and James Starks might not be able to do so, and the secondary might not be able to get the job done in a two minute type of situation against Manning and his stout package of receivers.
The injury that really seemed to hurt at the end of the year was the one to WR Greg Jennings. The offense came out the week after the Jennings injury and only scored 14 points against the Chiefs, clearly the worst mark of the season that it put up. The week off played into the hands of Green Bay, as Jennings is going to be ready to get back in the fold in this one with his banged up knee. T Bryan Bulaga should be back from a knee injury, and WR Randall Cobb, DB Charles Woodson, and Starks, all of which have nagging injuries, should be ready to go this week as well.
Head To Head: Earlier this year, the Giants had the Packers dead to rights in the fourth quarter. Manning had generated a comeback to tie the game in the fourth quarter in the Meadowlands, but Rodgers marched down in just a matter of a handful of seconds and setup K Mason Crosby for the game winning field goal at the gun. This isn’t nearly the first time that these two teams have played in the playoffs. They did so in 2002, a game won by the Packers on the ground, and in 2009, a game won by the Giants in OT in the last game that QB Brett Favre ever played for Green Bay. That being said, dating back to 1981, the Packers are a solid 10-6 SU and 9-7 ATS against the G-Men.
Aaron Ryan has been in the sportswriting biz since the late-90s, and he has worked side by side with some of the best and brightest in sports gambling. Always searching for the best trends in sports, Andrew uses his brilliant math mind to his advantage to beat the books.