This Sunday the Kansas City Chiefs (10-2) will host the Baltimore Ravens (7-5). Kickoff for this AFC clash between two potential playoff teams is set for 1:00 EST at Arrowhead Stadium and will be televised locally on CBS.
Oddsmakers currently have the Chiefs listed as a 6.5-point home favorite with the total set for 53 points. Click here for a full look at the Week 14 NFL odds and for more links to our game previews.
Vegas Game Odds & Betting Preview: Ravens vs Chiefs
Baltimore comes into this one off a 26-16 win and cover at Atlanta as a 3-point dog. The Ravens have won 3 straight, all with Lamar Jackson at quarterback in place of the injured Joe Flacco. Jackson has turned Baltimore into one of the league’s most feared rushing teams, as they have rushed for 714 yards in Jackson’s 3 starts. With the Steelers surprising collapse at home to the Chargers, Baltimore is just 1/2-game back of Pittsburgh for the AFC North lead.
Kansas City comes in off a 40-33 win at Oakland. While the Chiefs failed to cover the massive 14-point spread on the road against a division rival, they had to be happy just getting a win after all the off field drama that came with the release of star running back Kareem Hunt. While the Steelers meltdown helped the Ravens, it did no favors to Kansas City, as it kept the Chargers just 1-game back of KC for the top spot in the AFC West.
Free NFL Betting Pick & Game Predictions: Chiefs -6.5
My early lean here would be to lay the points with Kansas City at home. I know this is going to be the public side, but I just can’t pass up the Chiefs laying less than a touchdown at home.
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Kansas City is a perfect 5-0 at home this season, where they have outscored opponents by 16.2 points/game. That’s not just the result of a couple blowouts either. All 5 of the Chiefs wins at home have come by at least a touchdown.
I don’t think it’s going to be any different against the Ravens, who I think are a bit overvalued right now. Not to take anything away from Lamar Jackson and his 3-0 record as a starter, but it’s come against teams who are out of the playoff race in the Bengals, Raiders and Falcons.
I also think we are getting a good price on the Chiefs here due to the fact that they are just 1-3-1 ATS in their last 5 games. There’s also going to be those that think the Ravens have a shot here because of their defense. They were saying the same thing when the Jaguars came to Kansas City back in Week 5 and the Chiefs did whatever they wanted in a 30-14 victory.
I also think there’s some doubters out there with KC now that they no longer have Kareem Hunt. I’m not going to say they are better without him, but I also don’t think his absence is that big a deal with this team. As long as they have a healthy Patrick Mahomes and all those weapons on the outside, defenses will have no choice but to respect the pass and that’s going to allow for whoever runs to pick up big yards.
The Chiefs rushed for 174 yards in their first game without Hunt, which was their best mark since Week 7 and second highest total of the season. The offense has also played the last few games without wideout Sammy Watkins, but he’s back practicing and expected to suit up.
As for the defense, I think the Chiefs are more than capable of slowing down the Ravens offense, regardless if it’s Flacco or Jackson. While Kansas City is giving up 27.2 ppg, they are only allowing 17.6 ppg at home. That stop unit really feeds off the home crowd, which I think is the best in the league when this team is playing well.
I actually think it works in Kansas City’s favor if Jackson gets the nod, because I don’t think you can beat this team without being able to throw the football effectively. Jackson hasn’t thrown for more than 180 yards in any start and has just 1 TD pass to 3 interceptions. If Baltimore’s defense struggles at all against that KC offense early, things could spiral out of control if the Chiefs get a double-digit lead and the Ravens are forced to throw more than they would like.
Chiefs are 8-1 ATS over the last 2 seasons as a home favorite of 7 points or less, 11-3 ATS in their last 14 vs a team from the AFC and 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 vs a team with a wining record. Ravens on the other hand have failed to cover 4 straight against a team with a winning record. Give me Kansas City -6.5