The Teaser: Pair Kansas City and New England
Game 1: Kansas City vs. Denver
The Initial Line:
Kansas City -7.5 home vs. Denver
Add 7 points to Kansas City’s line
The Final Line:
Kansas City -0.5
Kansas City suffered a tough loss on the last play of the game, falling to their division rivals in Oakland 31-30 on Thursday Night Football with 0 seconds left on the clock. After 2 straight penalties, Oakland got a 3rd shot at the end zone and connecting for the 2-yd TD despite KC holding a 9-pt lead going into the 4th quarter. Denver had one of their worst defeats in years, as they were shutout for the first time in 25 years losing on the road to the Los Angeles Chargers 21-0. Trevor Siemian continues to make costly errors with 2 turnovers (1 INT, 1 fumble) in the loss.
Kansas City had been the hottest team in the NFL over the first 5 games until their recent 2-game skid. However, they only lost by a combined 7 points and stil rank 2nd in PPG (29.6). They also rank 3rd in turnover differential at +7 and only have 1 giveaway on the season, which can help when facing a tough Denver defense. On the other side, even though Denver’s D allows the fewest yards/game, they’ve only forced 4 turnovers and overall have a -8 turnover differential (29th in NFL). At the end of the day both of these teams have a strong defense, but the Kansas City offense has been revived by the excellent play of Alex Smith (1st in passer rating in the NFL) and the emergence of Tyreek Hill and Kareem Hunt. KC will be at home after a 10-day rest period, so I give them the edge in this AFC West rivalry. I’m not quite convinced they could cover a -7.5 spread, but in a teaser getting them to win in Arrowhead seems like a no-brainer here.
Game 2: New England vs. Los Angeles Chargers
The Initial Line:
New England -7.5 home vs. Los Angeles Chargers
Add 7 points to New England’s line
The Final Line:
New England -0.5
New England continued to dominate Atlanta, as they got the definitive win in the Super Bowl rematch at home 23-7 on Sunday Night Football. The balanced 4-man rushing attack led NE in this one, as they gained 162 yds on the ground led by Dion Lewis’ 76 yards. Los Angeles continued their hot streak, winning for the first time in their new home with a 21-0 rout of Denver. Los Angeles’ defense was the story on Sunday with 3 turnovers forced in locking down their first shutout of the year.
The first few weeks, New England was stumbling a bit and everyone was placing the blame on their horrid defense. However, it looks like Bill Belichick may have finally helped them work out the kinks which spells trouble for the rest of the league. After allowing 32 PPG over the first 4 games, they’ve only allowed 12.7 PPG over the past 3 games. Both of these teams have had a recent hot streak, with 3 straight wins a piece. The offenses are both led by game-changing QBs, with Brady (2,208 yds) and Rivers (1,816 yds) both in the top 5 in passing yards to this point. However in terms of overall production, New England holds the edge as they rank 1st in the NFL in yards/game (410.7) while Los Angeles only ranks 17th (330.4). LA has a knack for keeping games tight as only one of their games has been decided by more than 7 pts, so I’m a bit wary taking NE to win by 7.5. Grabbing them just to win the game at home sounds a lot safer though, so get them in a teaser down to -0.5.