Indianapolis Colts (11-6 SU 9-7-1 ATS) vs. Kansas City Chiefs (12-5 SU 9-6-1 ATS)
The Colts have won five row and they were very conviNCing in beating the Houston Texans in the Lone State in the Wild Card round in their last Game. They head into this Game at Kansas City as a 5.5-point underdog, but they are playing with a ton of confideNCe and after starting the season 1-5 they only have one loss since. Andrew LUck has been great this season and he is a shoe-in for the Comeback Player of the Year. He led the Colts back from a 28-point deficit in a 2013 Wild Card Game in KC against the Chiefs in a 45-44 win.
The Chiefs are 12-4 and they won the AFC West and have home field through the playoffs, but can their D hold up? They won their season finale, against the hapless Oakland Raiders, but lost their previous two Games to a couple of playoff teams in Seattle and the L.A. Chargers where they GAve up a total of 67 points.
Patrick Mahomes is the likely MVP this season passing for 5,097 yards with 50 TD and 12 TD leading the Chiefs and their #1 offense. However, their defense ranks 2nd to last in the league.
At 5Dimes sportsbook the Chiefs are a 5.5-point home favorite with a total of 56.5.
This season the Colts are 9-7-1 ATS with an O/U record of 8-9 and the Chiefs are 7-8-1 ATS with an O/U record of 7-9.
These teams have not met since the 2016 season.
The Colts are 7-1 ATS in their last nine Games facing the Chiefs in Kansas City.
In their last Game in the Wild Card round the Colts were on the road and they beat the Houston Texans 21-7. They outGAined Houston 422 yards to 322 yards and they rushed for 222 yards. Indy did not give up a TD until the 4th quarter, but they were shut out in the 2nd half after taking a 21-0 halftime lead.
LUck was 19/32 for 222 yards with two TD and one INT and T.Y. Hilton led the team with 85 receiving yards. LUck was not sacked oNCe in the Game and the Chiefs had the 6th most sacks in the league and their pass rush has to pressure LUck in this Game so he does not have time to torch their secondary. Marlon MACk had a big Game against Houston rushing for 148 yards and he has rushed for at least 119 yards in three of his last Four Games iNCluding his last two.
KC only ranks 2nd to last in the NFL in pass defense and 27th in run defense.
Mahomes, obviously, had a big season and he was only picked off twice in his last five Games. WR Tyreek Hill had 1,479 receiving yards and TE Travis Kelse had 1,336 receiving yards and the duo combined for 22 TD.
Kansas City’s run Game struggled after the release of Kareem Hunt and Damien Williams and SpeNCer Ware, who combined for 528 rushing yards this season have to help Mahomes out picking up some yards on the ground.
The Colts’ defense ranks 16th in the league against the pass, 8th against the run, and they had the 4th most sacks in the league.
Colts ATS Trends
7-0 ATS in their last 7 Games facing a team with a winning record
4-1 ATS in their last 5 road Games
4-1 ATS in their last 5 Games
Under record of 6-2 in their last 8 Games
Chiefs ATS Trends
1-4 ATS in their last 5 home Games
1-5-1 ATS in their last 7 Games
1-9 ATS in their last 10 playoff Games
Over record of 5-1 in their last 6 Games
Jason’s Pick: Here we go again, as another season where the Chiefs had a great regular season, but are the set up for another playoff disappointment? They only covered oNCe in their last Four home Games and they face a red-hot Colts team with LUck playing great under center. Look for a barnburner in this Game and while Kansas City may get the win the Colts will, at least, cover the spread in what will be a close Game.
Bettorsworld Pick – Well, last weeks Wild Card Games seemed easy compared to this weeks Divisional round. We nailed 3 of 4 last week but this week, we can really make a case for each side in at least 3 of the 4 Games. Let’s get things started with this one.
The Colts are on everyone’s radar this week and rightly so. They were one of the hottest teams in the league down the stretch compiling a 9-1 run and then knocked off the Texans with ease last week in the Wild Card Game. They also have the all important big time QB in Andrew LUck. LUck brings plenty of playoff experieNCe to the table iNCluding a trip to the AFC Championship in 2014.
On the other side of the ball we have Patrick Mahomes. Although he was with the Chiefs last year and started the last Game of the year, let’s be honest, he’s a rookie. A rookie who, to this point, has done nothing but have one great NFL season. We have seen QB’s have great years and then fade off into mediocrity. In other words, we know what LUck is. He’s a proven NFL talent. We don’t yet know if we’ll even remember the name Patrick Mahomes in 5 years. Not his fault. Time will tell.
The Chiefs defense left a lot to be desired this year. It wasn’t very good. But you can usually get away with that when you have such a potent offense. Sure, the Chiefs blew out the likes of the Jags, Raiders and Bengals, but their Games against “good” teams were all close and I think everyone would agree, the Colts are “good”.
Using full season data, Our model likes the Chiefs by a 8, 35-27. However, when we use data from the last 7 Games only, the model has the Colts winning outright, 25-23.
We were able to find a big edge for the Chiefs using home and away yards per point numbers however. The Chiefs ypp numbers at home this year were a fantastic 12.3 on offense and 19.7 on defense for a ypp differential of +7.4. The Colts on the road were a 15.7 and 15.8. Very average.
If we were to take the Colts, Our main reason for doing so would be Andrew LUck over Patrick Mahomes and the fact that we feel that when all is said and done and we look back at Andrew LUcks career, we’re likely going to see a Super Bowl win or two. If that’s to pan out, there’s no time like the present.
If we were to take the Chiefs, it would of course be because of their potent offense but more specifically, their performance at home on both sides of the ball. again, that +7.4 ypp differential at home is tops in the NFL.
The Verdict? This is a tough call. Home field advantage didn’t mean much last week in the Wild Card round with 3 of the 4 winners doing so on the road. However, we think this week might pan out differently. Specifically in this spot where KC has been so good at home. The UNDER may be worth a look as well. Chiefs -5 and UNDER 57.5.