One of the more popular week 1 NFL match ups from a betting standpoint will be the Kansas City Chiefs taking on the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Chiefs are -3.5 point road favorites with a total of 51.
The Chiefs lost an overtime thriller to the Patriots in the AFC Championship game, 37-31. KC finished the year 13-5 straight up and 10-7-1 ATS.
The Jags were 5-11 straight up and 5-9-2 against the spread. A far cry from their 2017 record of 10-6 along with a playoff birth. After a 3-1 start, the Jags dropped 7 straight. Good bye season.
Jags Grab Nick Foles
Thankfully for the Jaguars, teams can go from worst to first in the NFL. That’s what the off-season is for and the Jags made some headlines.
They brought in Nick Foles to lead the offense, filling the hole that existed at QB for quite some time. Along with Foles, they also signed receiver Chris Conley and tight end Geoff Swaim. Lastly, they added some extra protection for Foles up front.
The Jags defense was in good shape. A year ago they were 4th overall in points against and 5th overall in yards against. Not too shabby. Obviously there’s some excitement in Jacksonville for 2019.
Chiefs Hope to Improve Defense
It’s hard to pick on a team that was an OT loss away from the Super Bowl last year. Obviously, for the Chiefs, it was Patrick Mahomes and the KC offense that lead the way.
The Chiefs defense was average at best. Heck, with that offense, the defense could afford to be average. So much of the Chiefs efforts in the off-season were on improving the defense. That included the firing of defensive coordinator Bob Sutton who was replaced by Steve Spagnuolo.
For the Chiefs we get to see if wonder boy Mahomes can pick up where he left off a year ago.
For the Jags, we get to see if off-season moves to strengthen the offense can pay dividends right out of the gate.
We Like the Chiefs
These two met last October in KC. In that one, the Chiefs came away with a 30-14 win.
Our model says, if they met at the end of last season, the predicted score would have been 24-13 Chiefs. Not bad for the Jags considering the Chiefs averaged 34.8 points per game.
So if we assume that the Jacksonville defense remains tight and the offense improves considerably with their additions, we can reasonably expect the margin in this one to be a TD or less. Unfortunately, that probably won’t be enough to get the money in this one.
The betting action is fairly balanced as of this early writing, though the Jags are surprisingly getting more play. But we’re going to help balance that action out. Mark us down for the Chiefs -3.5 (jazz sports)