The Indianapolis Colts visit AFC East winners the Buffalo Bills in the first of six NFL wild card playoffs set to take place this weekend (Jan. 9). Buffalo are frontrunners to prolong their season, though each of their last five trips into the post-season have ended in the wild card round.
- The Bills are -286 moneyline favorites based on NJ bookies predictions (bet365)
- Buffalo lead all time series 37-32-1 (first post-season meeting)
- However, Indianapolis have won 8 of last 11 meetings
Indianapolis Colts @ Buffalo Bills Game Info
Date: Saturday, January 9
Time: 1:055 p.m. ET
Venue: Bills Stadium, Orchard Park, New York
TV Info: CBS
Stefon Diggs Last Touchdown Scorer (+900)
Bills fans can breathe a sigh of relief knowing Stefon Diggs looks set to get the all clear for Saturday. An oblique injury suffered in the 56-26 annihilation of Miami led to concerns their star receiver would miss the wild card clash, but The Athletic’s Joe Buscaglia reported otherwise:
#Bills WR Stefon Diggs on his injury:— Joe Buscaglia (@JoeBuscaglia) January 6, 2021
Quarterback Josh Allen (nine) is the only Bill to have has scored more touchdowns this year than Diggs (eight), who failed to catch a single first-quarter score among that eight. In fact, 62.5 percent of Diggs’ touchdowns this season came in the third and fourth quarters.
The 27-year-old’s thriving partnership alongside Allen makes him almost a shoo-in to score against a fairly average Colts passing defense, likely later rather than sooner.
Stefon Diggs 3+ Touchdowns (+3000)
While we’re on the subject of the often dazzling Diggs, there’s an urge to at least cover the somewhat surprising +3000 odds that he’ll get his second hat-trick of the season.
Granted, Indianapolis are a cut above this year’s Patriots—against whom Diggs caught three touchdowns in Week 16—though it’s worth noting New England’s pass defense is statistically superior (in yards and touchdowns conceded).
Obviously, Diggs’ +3000 odds reflect the probabilities working against him, but his high play volume and the blossoming form of Allen in particular mean a triple can’t be ruled out.
Buffalo Bills -13.5 (+230)
The Bills are 6.5-point favorites according to the spread, but as one of only two teams to score more than 500 points in the regular season, there’s every chance the gulf could be greater.
A converted touchdown or less has separated these two teams in four of their last seven encounters, although the Colts pulled no punches decimating Buffalo 37-5 when they last met in October 2018. Allen played no part in that affair during his debut season, and he’s just one weapon that could make all the difference ahead of his debut against Indianapolis.
Entering Week 15, Buffalo’s biggest winning margin this term was 11 points. Sean McDermott’s offense has stepped things up of late, however, winning their last three by at least 29 points.
The Titans and the Ravens each beat Indianapolis by at least 14 points, accounting for almost half of their five defeats this season. Frank Reich’s men don’t lose big often, but versatile quarterbacks with a potent edge in at least one aspect of the offense have ravaged them in recent times.
Over 62.5 Points (+390)
As far as scoring goes, this playoff has the potential to be tight and tetchy or a back-and-forth blowout, but the odds look particularly attractive to those predicting a high Over to hit.
As only an offense of their quality can, the Bills can drag even the stingiest defenses into high-scoring games. A quarter of their regular-season games produced 63 points or more compared to just one for the Colts, but Indianapolis may not have a choice in opening up if they trail early.
Buffalo had the sixth worst defense in the NFL for rushing touchdowns allowed in 2020, music to the ears of Colts rookie running-back Jonathan Taylor, who has seven TDs in his last four games.
Colts @ Bills Moneyline Odds
Indianapolis Colts: +245
Buffalo Bills: -286
Odds via Sugarhouse NJ