The Kansas City Chiefs (12-4) will host the Indianapolis Colts (10-6) in the first of four Division Round matchups this weekend. Kickoff is set for 4:35 EST on Saturday at Arrowhead Stadium and will be televised nationally on NBC.
Oddsmakers currently have the Chiefs listed as a 5-point home favorite with the total way up there at 57 points.
Vegas Game Preview & Bettings Odds: Colts vs Chiefs
Indianapolis earned the No. 6 seed in the AFC with a 33-17 road win over the Tennessee Titans in Week 17. That earned them the right to go on the road and face No. 3 seed and division rival Houston. The Colts took full advantage of the opportunity, as they defeated the Texans 21-7 as a slim 2-point underdog. That’s now 5 straight wins for Indy, improving them to 10-1 in their last 11.
The Chiefs won the tie-breaker with division rival Los Angeles, giving them another AFC West crown and the No. 1 seed in the AFC. It’s crazy to think back to the summer when some people had this team picked to finish last in their division. That was until head coach Andy Reid unleashed second-year quarterback Patrick Mahomes on the league. If it wasn’t for a shaky defense, KC could have easily went undefeated this year, as they averaged a ridiculous 37.5 ppg in their 4 losses.
These two teams last played in Week 8 of 2016. The Chiefs won that contest 30-14 behind backup quarterback Nick Foles. The previous meeting before that was the 2013-14 playoffs, which Indianapolis won 45-44 after trailing 38-10 in the 2nd half.
NFL Betting Predictions & Free Pick: Chiefs -5
My early lean here would be to lay the points with Kansas City at home, as I actually feel like there’s some decent value here with the Chiefs at this price.
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I think because Kansas City kinda limped into the playoffs and their defense has been so bad, few are believing this team has what it takes to win it all. Last I checked the most important position on the field is the quarterback and in my opinion the Chiefs have the best signal caller in the postseason.
It’s not just Mahomes and what he brings to the table, this Kansas City offense is unlike anything we have seen before. The Chiefs eclipsed 25 points in every single game this season. KC has weapons littered all over the field and while the Colts defense has been playing great during their big run, I think they are going to struggle to slow this Chiefs offense down.
I’m also not solid on Indianapolis’ defense being as good as the numbers suggest. Don’t get me wrong, they are greatly improved on that side of the ball. However, during their 10-1 stretch, they haven’t played many top notch signal callers. The run includes games against Derek Anderson, Derek Carr, Blake Bortles, Blaine Gabbert (twice), Ryan Tannehill, Cody Kessler, Deshaun Watson (twice), Dak Prescott and Eli Manning.
The other huge factor here is where the game is being played. Arrowhead Stadium is one of the toughest places in the NFL to play for opposing teams, especially in a game of this magnitude. The atmosphere is going to be electric in Kansas City and while this Chiefs offense is built to put up points no matter where the game is played, the defense really feeds off the energy of the stadium. I think because the overall numbers are so bad, people overlook just how drastically better KC’s defense is at home compared to on the road.
Star safety Eric Berry is listed as questionable, but I have to believe he’s going to give it a go. There’s no doubt this defense is better with him on the field, but they can still win and cover without him. The other thing with the Chiefs is they have a top notch pass rush, which really makes it tough on opposing teams if they get behind. KC also is one of the better teams at getting off the field on 3rd down. I think the Chiefs win here comfortably. Give me Kansas City -5!