Chargers Broncos Odds
Posted by Jimmy Boyd on
This Thursday first place in the AFC West will be up for grabs when the Denver Broncos (5-1, 3-3 ATS) host the San Diego Chargers (5-2, 5-2 ATS). Kickoff is scheduled for 8:25 EST at Sports Authority Field and will be televised on both CBS and the NFL Network. Oddsmakers currently have the Broncos listed as a 7.5-point home favorite with the total set at 51 points.
These two teams faced off three times last season. Twice during the regular season and once in the playoffs. The Broncos won at San Diego 28-20 as a 7-point favorite, but the Chargers would return the favor with a shocking 27-20 victory at Denver as a 10-point underdog. In the most important matchup the Broncos won 24-17 as a 8-point home favorite to advance to the AFC Championship Game. The Chargers have consistently played Denver close since Peyton Manning game to down. While they are just 1-4 SU, they are 3-2 ATS and each of the last 4 meetings have been decided by 8-points or less.
Early Lean on Broncos -7.5
The fact that the Chargers have been able to keep it close against Denver over the last couple of years, will likely have the public take San Diego at 7.5. Not that I don’t think the Chargers are a good team, I just feel the Broncos are that much better. The better team has had a clear advantage in these Thursday games and I look for the Chargers to struggle to keep this one competitive.
Unlike last year’s game that Denver lost at home in Week 15 to the Chargers, the Broncos don’t have a firm grasp on the division. With a road game at San Diego still left on the schedule, Denver understands just how important this game is. Another big difference from last year is the Broncos are a much stronger team defensively than they were a season ago. Denver comes in ranked 3rd against the run (74.3 ypg) and 18th against the pass (242.5 ypg).
Denver is also 3rd in the league with 21 sacks through 6 games, which is already more than half of what they had last year (41). Last year the Broncos’ mediocre pass rush was able to sack Rivers 10 times in 3 games. This past Sunday, Rivers was sacked 2 times and completed just 17 of 31 attempts for 205 yards last week against a Chiefs defense that also specializes in getting after the quarterback.
Road underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points who are averaging 70 to 95 rushing yards/game against a team that’s allowing 70 to 95 yards/game are just 7-32 (18%) ATS over the last 10 seasons.
What I like about the Broncos is they have really been impressive at home against some of the better teams in the league. In Week 5 they crushed the Cardinals 41-20, which is still their only loss of the season. Just this past week they embarrassed San Francisco 42-17. They also defeated the Colts 31-24 in a game that wasn’t nearly as close as the final score would indicate. Denver had a 24-0 lead and led by 21 with less than 8 minutes to play in the 4th quarter. The Broncos are 23-9 ATS in their last 32 home games against teams who are outscoring opponents by 6+ points/game.
Another key difference from last year is the Chargers aren’t nearly as strong on the ground. San Diego comes in ranked just 29th in the league with 89.3 ypg, which is a far cry from last year’s average of 125.0 ypg. Keep in mind the Chargers used their rushing attack to perfection against the Broncos in 2013, controlling the time of possession, which kept Denver’s offense out of rhythm and limited the number of times they got their hands on the football.
Adding to the Chargers struggles on the ground and Denver’s ability to stop the run, is a big time system telling us to fade San Diego. Road underdogs of 3.5 to 10 points who are averaging 70 to 95 rushing yards/game against a team that’s allowing 70 to 95 yards/game are just 7-32 (18%) ATS over the last 10 seasons.