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NFL Championship Game Picks, Results

Bad news for New England Patriots haters – the Pats will win and cover the spread again in the AFC championship game, according to the Odds Shark prediction computer.

The computer is 7-1 SU in the playoffs so far, but just 3-5 ATS. It was a perfect 4-0 in picking totals last weekend, with all four Divisional Playoff games going OVER the total.

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The picks engine has the Patriots beating the Baltimore Ravens 40-29 Sunday and advancing to Super Bowl XVLII. They opened as 7.5-point home favorites but were quickly bet up to -9 by Monday afternoon (check for line updates at Bovada during the week).

[ 49ers vs Falcons Matchup Report | Patriots vs Ravens Matchup Report ]

If the computer is correct, they will face the San Francisco 49ers, who will win by the slightest of margins.

The computer predicted a 29.4 to 29.2 result, the closest of any game we have seen in months. Atlanta, which nearly blew its last game, opened as 3-point home underdogs, a surprise to many. But after the 49ers handled Green Bay, many believe they are the NFC’s best team.

Bettors quickly backed the 49ers and pushed the spread down to -4 at BetOnline and Bovada.

Trends are hard to come by at this level of the playoffs. Three of the past four games played UNDER the total, although the computer is picking both games OVER this year.

Road teams have been a marginal bet at 4-2 ATS the past three seasons. NFC road teams are 4-1 ATS the past five seasons.

New England has won but failed to cover the past two times in this role. The Ravens have been here three times since 2000 and are 2-1 ATS, while the Falcons lost here in 2004 (27-10 to Philly) and the 49ers lost a year ago to the Giants.

NFL Championship Results since 2000

YearRoadScoreHomeScoreSU winHomeLineATS winTotalOU
2011Baltimore20New England23NE-7BAL49U
2011NY Giants20SanFrancisco17NYG-2.5NYG41U
2010Green Bay21Chicago14GB3.5GB42U
2010NY Jets19Pittsburgh24PIT-4PIT38O
2009NY Jets17Indianapolis30IND-7.5IND40O
2009Minnesota28New Orleans31NO-4MIN54O
2007San Diego12New England21NE-14SD46.5U
2007NY Giants23Green Bay20NYG-7NYG40.5O
2006New Orleans14Chicago39CHI-3CHI42.5O
2006New England34Indianapolis38IND-3.5IND47O
2004New England41Pittsburgh27NE2NE38O
2003Indianapolis14New England24NE-3.5NE42.5U
2002Tampa Bay27Philadelphia10TB-4TB34O
2001New England24Pittsburgh17NE-8NE36O
2001Philadelphia24St. Louis29STL-11.5PHI51.5O
2000Minnesota0New York41NYG2NYG43U