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January 12, 2017

The PhillyVoice divisional playoff lock of the week

The first round of the NFL playoffs was loaded with blowouts and teams that probably weren't playoff-worthy. This week, it's a much more robust slate of games. For those of you who need "financially motivated" reasons to watch the second round of the NFL playoffs, you can see our NFL divisional round playoff picks here.

My favorite pick this week is the Steelers, as much as I'd like to see old friend Andy Reid win. This is such a tough draw for Big Red and the Chiefs. Kansas City fought all season long to go 12-4, winning their division and gaining a first-round bye, even going 6-0 in the difficult AFC West, only to face a Steelers team that will enter this game on an eight-game winning streak.

This game opened as a "pick 'em," but shifted to the Chiefs being slight favorites, presumably because of concerns about Ben Roethlisberger's foot injury.

Earlier this year, the Steelers demolished the Chiefs 43-14, in a game that was over by halftime. At one point in that contest, Pittsburgh led 36-0. Then again, that was at a time during the season that the Eagles were 3-0. In other words, that was a long time ago. Still, the Steelers are the hottest team in the NFL right now, and it's hard to bet against that. That may sound simple. It is.

This week's guest picker

Chiefs (-1.5) over Steelers

Essentially, with such a small spread, we are picking the winner this week. Do you know Andy Reid’s record after the bye week? 15-2. Three of those wins are the after the bye week in the playoffs (3-0). The Chiefs have officially come together and that is why I believe they are The Pick of the week. Despite the Steelers' easy win over the Dolphins, it will be hard for them to go into the loudest stadium in the NFL and pull out a victory.