Divisional Round history and betting trends

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Since the inception of the 12-team NFL playoff format in 1990, the top two seeds in each conference have not only benefited from the luxury of hosting the wild-card round winner, but doing so with an added week of rest.

The well-rested hosts are 70-26 SU (straight up) overall but only 49-45-2 ATS (against the spread).  However, what started as a huge point spread edge for home teams has diminished drastically over the past eight postseasons.  Consider: from 1990 through the 2005 playoffs these well-rested hosts compiled a hefty 51-13 SU and 37-23-2 ATS mark.  Since 2006 they have gone a dismal 19-13 SU and 12-20 ATS.

That is as many losses (13) over the last 8 postseasons as during the first sixteen, to show for their effort.  Thus it appears that rest has turned to rust for these top two conference seeds.

In addition, No. 1 seeds in the NFC are 20-4 SU (.834) and 14-10 ATS (.583) in the Divisional Playoffs.  No. 1 seeds in the AFC are 14-10 SU (.583) and 9-15 ATS (.378).

Situational wise, No. 1 seeds off a SU loss are 14-4 SU (.780) and 12-6 ATS (667).  No. 1 seeds off a SU win are 20-10 SU (667) and 11-19 ATS (35.7) The most recent trend of note: since the 2006 playoffs all No. 1 seeds are 8-8 SU and 3-13 ATS in divisional round games.

Here are the No. 1 seeds have fared in Divisional round play since 1990:

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