Thursday Night Football gives us a very tasty AFC West rivalry this week. The Chiefs come into this game two full games ahead of the Broncos in the standings, but momentum tells us that Denver has a real shot to close the gap at home in front of a frenzied crowd.
Kansas City comes into this game on the back of two disappointing losses. Patrick Mahomes and his teammates will be desperate to get back on the right side of the win/loss ledger. The Chiefs do not want to lose this game and throw the AFC West up for grabs.
The Broncos would love nothing more than to add to Kansas City’s misery. They are getting three points at home, but they certainly won’t approach this game like underdogs. Denver’s pass rush will feel like they can control the game against the Chiefs’ questionable offensive line.
Just like very game, you should consult our Statschecker Site before you make your wagers on this match-up. Read on to discover five interesting nuggets you can find there about Thursday night’s intriguing contest.
1. The Chiefs have owned the Broncos lately
Andy Reid’s teams have fared very well against Denver as of late. The two sides have split their contests evenly since 2010 at 9-9, but Kansas City has won the last seven games. The Broncos will need to break that ugly streak to increase their record to 3-4.
The challenge for Denver is that their offense doesn’t have the firepower to keep up with Mahomes and company. If this game turns into a shootout it’s going to end badly for the Broncos. Joe Flacco and his offense will try to control the clock. Mahomes and his group will push the ball down the field early and often.
2. The Broncos like to go under as underdogs
When Denver comes into a game as an underdog, they really like to keep the score down to try to even the odds. That’s why the Broncos have gone under in 12 of their last 13 games as underdogs.
That’s obviously the case Thursday night so you should be careful about expecting the Chiefs offense to go wild on a pretty talented Denver defense. The health of Mahomes could be a key factor too. He’s been a full participant in practice this week, but his ankle has caused him trouble in each of his team’s two losses.
3. Travis Kelce deserves your attention
The Chiefs have plenty of offensive weapons to leverage, but no one can afford to forget about their Pro Bowl tight end. The Broncos know too much about Kelce for their liking. He’s scored a touchdown in each of his last four games against Denver.
In other words, don’t get too caught up about Tyreek Hill’s recent return to the field in this game. Kelce is going to get some chances to make big plays down the seam. He’s a terrific play in all Fantasy formats this week.
4. The Chiefs don’t cover at night
Kansas City has failed to cover the spread in each one of their last five night games. It’s true they generally play marquee opponents in that sort of time slot, but it’s a troubling trend for bettors looking to back the Chiefs big on Thursday night.
Let’s not mince words, this is a very tricky game to wager. The Chiefs haven’t bene good for the past two weeks. The Broncos, in sharp contrast, have resurrected their season in the same time frame. It’s a match-up with two teams trending in totally different directions. That’s a dangerous phenomenon for bettors looking to capitalize on the match-up.
5. 11 points is a big number
The spread for this game is just three points, but eleven might be a more important number to focus on. That’s the difference in points per game between these two teams. Kansas City checks in at 28.7 points per contest while Denver is only scoring 17.7 every time out.
Yes, the Broncos defense is significantly better than their Kansas City counterparts, but the same can be said in reverse on the other side of the ball. Denver’s offense cannot be counted on to put up significant points against anyone. They have a chance to buck that trend against Kansas City, but it’s no certainty. Don’t get overly caught up in the defensive match-up without putting equal weight on how the two offenses compare.
Lean towards the Chiefs
Desperation is going to be a key theme for this game. The Chiefs and Broncos both desperately need a win to keep their respective seasons on track.
That makes this game very volatile in terms of betting it. Emotion makes it more difficult to project outcomes. As such, we’re advising you place a relatively moderate wager on Kansas City this week. The idea of Mahomes and company dropping three games in a row just doesn’t feel like a narrative we can get behind. If you want to tease the line up to 6.5 points to increase your winnings, we endorse that move as well.