By Greg Dempson
Kansas City Chiefs at New England Patriots
Of the four Divisional games being played this weekend this is the only one that does not feature a rematch from a previous regular season contest. So, does the going get a little tougher this weekend for the visiting teams due to the fact the four hosts have had a bye week? Last weekend the road teams won all four games with the hosts being underdogs in three of the contests while Washington’s line flip-flopped having them being – 1 or pick and even +1 at various stages during the week.
Okay, I’ll answer the question previously asked! Since 1990, (when the current playoff format was adopted,) the host team has been favored in 93 out of the 100 contests with one game listed as pick. The home team has fared well straight up, (73–27,) but the odds maker has done a good job with the lines as those 93 home favorites have an ATS record of 45–46–02.
Recent form has these road dogs doing much better. Since 2003 these road warriors are 29–16 or 64% ATS as well as 17–28 straight up.
As of this report the Kansas City Chiefs, (winners of 11 consecutive games winning by an average score of 28–12,) are a 4.5 or +5 point road with the total pegged at 41.5 or 42, down from an opening O/U of 44.5. This number of –4.5 or –5 is the lowest for a Patriots home playoff game as they’ve been favored by 7 or more in eight consecutive playoff games. The last time they were laying a price close to this number was in 2003 as they were favored by 4 points vs. the Ravens while losing that contest straight up, (33–14.)
Before a slew of injuries, the Patriots started the season at 10–0 but closed with a mark of 2–4. They were 9–0 until Julian Edelman was injured and 3–4 without him but apparently he is a go for this weekend. The status of Gronk is unclear, but, it just might be Belichick sandbagging! Chandler Jones is good to go as the Patriots are playing on “natural grass” vs. synthetic grass.
The big issue health wise for the Chiefs is how serious is the injury to Jeremy Maclin? He’s listed as questionable with a high ankle sprain.
View From the 50 Yard Line
· New England’s team total is 23.5 while Kansas City’s team total of 18.5.
· The Patriots have averaged 31.6 PPG on offense at home while holding opponents to an average of 17.7 PPG.
· The Chiefs averaged 29.1 PPG on the road while holding the opposition to 17.0.
· Alex Smith has averaged 19.4 PPG as a road underdog.
· In 4 playoff games Smith has averaged 31.8 PPG.
· In Brady’s last 9 playoff games he has averaged 27.4 PPG while the team has allowed 22.7 PPG.
· In Brady’s 5 starts vs. the Chiefs the Patriots have allowed an average of 19.8 PPG.
· I like the Chiefs team total over 18.5. This total, (18.5,) is a dead number as well as totals such as 18, 19 and 19.5 are obviously between the key numbers of 17 and 20 points. Weather might be an issue here, so check the weather and watch the game total, if the number of 42/41.5 drops, so will the team totals. The key number here is 17, but realistically, we won’t get a sniff with that number.
Chiefs vs Patriots Pick
My Every Edge Game of the Week is on the Kansas City team total to sail over 18.5 points.
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