This Sunday the Kansas City Chiefs (2-0) will host the Baltimore Ravens (2-0) in what many are calling the best game of the week. It is the only matchup on the board that has two undefeated teams playing against each other. Kickoff is set for 1:00 EST at Arrowhead Stadium and will be televised locally on CBS.
Oddsmakers opened this game at Kansas City -7 and that’s where it’s still at most books, though some have the Chiefs under the key number at -6.5. Total for this game opened at 54 and has dropped to 53.5 at some places.
Click here for a full look at the Week 3 NFL odds and for more links to our game previews.
Vegas Game Odds & Betting Preview: Ravens vs Chiefs
Baltimore improved to 2-0 with a 23-17 win at home against the Cardinals, but it wasn’t as lopsided as a lot of people thought. After their 59-10 win over the Dolphins in Week 1, the public was on the Ravens as a 13-point favorite.
Not only did they fail to cover, their never led by more than the number at any point in the game. They did out stat the Cardinals, with a 440 to 349 edge in total yards and a 26-15 advantage in first downs, but Arizona average 6.5 yards/play to the Ravens 6.1 yards/play. Key was Baltimore converted 50% on 3rd down and the Cardinals were 2 for 11.
Lamar Jackson had another big day with 272 yards and 2 scores through the air, plus he had 120 yards on 16 rush attempts. Tight end Mark Andrews and wide out Marquise Brown have caught 28 of the 47 completions for Jackson this season for 453 yards and 4 scores (rest of the team has 19 catches for 198 yards).
Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs didn’t play their best on the road at Oakland in Week 2, but they still managed to leave town with a 28-10 win and cover as a 7-point favorite. All 28 of the Chiefs points came in the 2nd quarter via an absolute onslaught by quarterback Patrick Mahomes. He threw for 278 yards and 4 touchdowns in that single period. On his last 5 attempts of the quarter he completed all 5 for at least 27 yards with 3 scores.
While KC didn’t score any more points in the 2nd half, they did have a couple big plays negated by penalties. A lot of people thought Mahomes was due to regress after his historic campaign in 2018 that led to the MVP. It certainly doesn’t look like that will be the case. If anything, he looks better.
I know it’s only two games and they haven’t exactly played a great offense, but Chiefs go into Week 3 ranked 9th in scoring defense (18.0 ppg) and 15th in total defense (367.5 ypg). They held the Raiders scoreless over the final 3 periods in Week 2.
This will be Mahomes vs Jackson round two, as these two played last year. It was also in Kansas City, but was much later in the season (Week 14). The Chiefs won the game 27-24 in OT and really stole the game from Baltimore. Mahomes hit Tyreek Hill for 48 yards on 4th and 9 to set up the game tying touchdown in the final seconds.
Free NFL Betting Pick & Game Predictions: Chiefs -6.5
My early lean here would be to lay the points with the Chiefs. The public has really fallen into the Lamar Jackson hype and we saw that with how many people looked to back them last week as a double-digit favorite against the Cardinals. To me this line is begging the public to take Baltimore, which only makes me like Kansas City more.
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I get the love for Jackson. He’s putting up crazy numbers, but unlike a lot of people I’m not completely on board with him as a pocket passer. His huge stateline from Week 1, where he threw for 324 yards and 5 touchdowns is going to look a lot less impressive the more beatings the Dolphins take. Miami is as bad a team as I can remember. They have officially brought tanking to the NFL.
There’s nothing wrong with throwing for 272 yards and 2 scores, but Matt Stafford had 385 and 3 scores against the Cardinals in Week 1. Not to mention they only managed to score 23 points with Jackson throwing for 272 and rushing for 120.
Last year Jackson only threw for 147 yards against a Chiefs defense that was arguably the worst in the league. He also only had 67 rushing yards on 14 attempts.
This Chiefs defense isn’t elite by any means, but I definitely think it’s improved over last year. More than anything, you have to factor in how much better their defense tends to play at home compared to on the road. The atmosphere at Arrowhead is going to be electric with this being their home opener and how excited everyone is about this team.
I think they can contain the Ravens offense and we know we are going to get a big game from Mahomes. I don’t care what the Baltimore defense did in Week 1 against the Dolphins. I’m focused on rookie Kyler Murray torching that secondary for 349 yards. Ravens defense is not as good as it was a year ago. They added Earl Thomas, but they lost Terrell Suggs, C.J. Mosley, Eric Weddle, and Za’Darius Smith. They are already down starting corner Jimmy Smith and backup corner Tavon Young.
One thing I’ve really been impressed with Mahomes and head coach Andy Reid is how they are able to adjust what teams are doing against them. I think playing against this Don Martindale defense last year will definitely work in their favor. Give me the Chiefs -6.5.