We have another AFC divisional matchup on Sunday Night Football when West rivals the Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs tangle. The division is the tightest in the NFL with just one win separating the first-place Chiefs from the rest of the pack.
It’s a bit surprising to see the Broncos gunning for the top spot, but they’ve played well recently winning three of their last four games, including a dominant showing against another division rival the Chargers in last week’s 28-13 triumph. Denver is feeling confident as it tries to end an 11-game losing streak in the series. KC is coming off its bye and is positioned as a 9.5-point favorite to keep the streak alive.
The Week 13 Sunday Night Football game between the Denver Broncos and Kansas City Chiefs will take place at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, MO at 8:20 p.m. ET on December 5 and will be televised on NBC.
Denver Broncos vs Kansas City Chiefs Odds
Denver Broncos +9.5 | Kansas City Chiefs -9.5 [BET NOW]
Denver Broncos vs Kansas City Chiefs Over/Under
Over/Under 47.5 [BET NOW]
The Chiefs have been favored in each of the last six meetings with the spread at 9-points or higher in half those outings. So seeing KC laying 9.5-points isn’t a surprise. The Chiefs climbed to the top of the division by winning their last four games with payouts in the previous two. But they have had problems covering at home when favored by a touchdown or more.
They’ve dropped seven in a row ATS and barely won the last two games, edging Green Bay 13-7 and the Giants before that 20-17 and the previous six such games all cashed the UNDER. So I guess that’s a start for the Broncos, who have won three of their last four while going 3-1 ATS. But at some point they will need to knock off the Chiefs to climb to the top. They haven’t won a series game since 2015 going 2-9 ATS. The line has remained steady but there has been movement on the total with that number wagered down to 47.5 after hitting the board at 50.
Both clubs have gotten a boost from their defense lately, and in the case of the Broncos it’s much needed. They aren’t going to win many shootouts and they will likely have a hobbled Teddy Bridgewater behind center on Sunday. Bridgewater sustained a leg injury in the first quarter of last week’s game, but returned in the second half with a noticeable limp to finish off the 28-13 win over the Chargers.
The offense has been far from spectacular with its output against the Bolts the second-highest in the last eight games. Overall they rank in the bottom third in total offense and scoring with 20.7 points per game. Bridgewater has been effective throwing for over 2,500 yards, but I don’t think they’ll keep pace on the scoreboard in this one.
Talking about the defense, the Broncos have put together strong outings over the last four games allowing an average of 17.3 points. In their three wins that number drops to 13 points per game. And the unit helped in the scoring last week with Pat Surtain returning one of his two interceptions for a touchdown. Denver has the third-best scoring defense allowing 17.8 points per game allowing them to play below the total in five straight with the UNDER 9-2 overall.
Kansas City Chiefs
Just how important is it to win games within the division? Well, consider that the Chiefs are 25-5 against their AFC West foes over the last 30 games and they’ve won the previous five division crowns. And they haven’t lost to the Broncos in six years. That streak will end eventually, but as long as Patrick Mahomes is slinging it KC remains the team to beat.
The Chiefs entered their bye on a four-game winning streak with the offense scoring more than 20 points just once. That’s a sign that things have been repaired on the defensive side. Earlier in the season the group was among the worst in the NFL in terms of yards and points allowed, which is why the Chiefs were 3-4 after a Week 7 loss to Tennessee. Now, if Mahomes can get his group situated KC is in line for another deep postseason run.
The bar was set so high in his first few seasons that this year has been a disappointment. That’s not really the case, though. Mahomes has thrown for 3,200 yards with 25 touchdowns and the Chiefs boast the second-best total offense and rank among the top-10 in scoring. And they’ve rewarded backers with consecutive payouts improving to 4-7 ATS.
Broncos vs Chiefs Predictions
It’s hard to trust the Chiefs given their difficulty covering the spread over the last few years. They failed to cover in seven straight at home when laying at least 7-points and Denver is well aware of the current skid with 11 straight defeats in the series. The Broncos don’t have the offense to keep up, but the D can suppress Mahomes leading to them staying within the line. And fewer points is an advantage for Denver.
Prediction: Denver Broncos +9.5 and UNDER 47.5
View NFL Week 13 betting odds.