The Falcons are the No. 1 seed and playing at home, but that didn't stop a number of NFL experts from picking the Seahawks. Who picked who and what do the bettors think? We find out.
The Atlanta Falcons went 13-3 during the regular season, including 7-1 at home. They are well rested and facing a team which went 3-5 on the road during the regular season is without on of its best defensive players. Still, despite those facts, the betting line has shifted towards Seattle and a number of NFL experts are picking the Seahawks.
The Falcons opened as a 3-point betting favorite, but are as little as a 1-point favorite in some places, according to the latest odds from Odds Shark. The Falcons went 9-6-1 against the spread this season while Seattle finished 11-5. Seattle, however, did most of its damage at home as it was just 4-4 against the spread on the road.
Despite their road struggles, a number of NFL experts picked Seattle to advance to the NFC Championship. Of the eight CBS Sports NFL analysts, six picked Seattle to win. SB Nation's Joel Thorman also picked Seattle, citing Seattle's recent level of play and stingy defense. Not all experts picked Seattle, however, as eight of ESPN's 12 analysts picked Atlanta to prevail. Atlanta was also the favorite among Yahoo! Sports' NFL analyst as two of the three picked the Falcons.
Both teams enter the game with top five scoring defenses, but the total was still set at 45. Recent trends aren't much help as the total has gone over in five of Seattle's last seven games but under in six of Atlanta's last seven.