The AFC and NFC Championships kick off this weekend, with four teams vying for a shot at the Super Bowl. As an early indication of how the games may play out, it’s always helpful to check out the odds. After all, Vegas knows best when it comes to picking football games, right?
In both conferences, a six seed made the championship, enduring two road games to get there. Once again, they’ll be on the road this weekend, looking to make it a clean sweep on their way to the Super Bowl.
Pittsburgh Steelers (-3.5) vs. New York Jets: Despite a road win over the New England Patriots, the Jets are 3-point underdogs again this week. The Jets clearly relish the underdog role, taking on an “us against the world” mentality. It worked as motivation in the Patriots game as the Jets settled the score with the Pats (see: Bart Scott’s post-game interview). Against a tenacious Pittsburgh defense, can Mark Sanchez lead the Jets to an AFC championship and Super Bowl berth? It doesn’t get much tougher than traveling to Pittsburgh to face the Steelers.
Chicago Bears vs. Green Bay Packers (-3.5): A favored road team! The Packers looked impressive while tearing apart the Atlanta Falcons this week and hold the advantage in the early Vegas lines ahead of this weekend’s NFC North matchup. The Bears and Packers are familiar with each other, having split the regular season series. Chicago won the first matchup, 20-17, and Green Bay won the second, 10-7. Expect another close game this time around, though with Aaron Rodgers firing the Packers could blow it open as they did in Atlanta.
For the rest of the odds, check out SB Nation’s NFL odds central.