The Kansas City Chiefs were not able to stand up to the Indianapolis Colts a few weeks ago on their home field. Now, they have to go to Indianapolis as an underdog on the point spread and beat the Colts in a hostile building.
AFC Wild Card Game – Saturday, January 4th
Kansas City Chiefs @ Indianapolis Colts
NFL Football Odds: PICK
Why The Chiefs Can Cover The Spread:
They are a team that can make adjustments to the Colts and find ways to make a 23-7 loss work for them. Kansas City didn’t measure up to Indianapolis in week 16 of the NFL season, getting blasted by 16 points on its own field. Indianapolis solved Kansas City’s offense, which had been performing extremely well. The Chiefs had scored a combined total of 101 points in their previous two games against Washington and Oakland. Even though the Redskins and Raiders are two of the worst teams in the NFL, it’s still not exactly easy to score a total of 101 points in any two NFL games. The Chiefs’ offense also performed well during the team’s three-game losing streak (with two of the losses coming against the offense of Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos, which was able to score even more frequently), so the loss to Indianapolis was that much more shocking within the context of Kansas City’s season.
However, the fact that the Chiefs couldn’t figure out Indianapolis in late December could mean that Kansas City will be able to identify both its mistakes and areas for opportunity on film study in this week of practice and preparation. The Chiefs can really assess what went wrong against the Colts, and after resting virtually all of their starters in week 17 against the San Diego Chargers, the Chiefs should be mentally ready to execute a better, more effective game plan. There’s nothing like a little clarity to improve a team’s perspective and readiness at playoff time. The beating the Colts handed the Chiefs in the regular season could boomerang back in the other direction for this wild card contest.
Why The Colts Can Cover The Spread:
They have returned to being the team that can beat anyone in the NFL on a good day. The Colts were really rather limp over the past month or so. They either got blown out by opponents, even ones without winning records (St. Louis in particular), and when they won, they usually skated by weak teams (Tennessee twice, Houston on the road) by narrow margins. The Colts’ offensive line just couldn’t control games, and the defense was not forceful enough to pressure opposing quarterbacks. However, from week 15 onward, the Colts have looked like the team that beat Denver, San Francisco, and Seattle earlier in the year. Indianapolis, at its best, can play a punishing style of defense, all while quarterback Andrew Luck distributes the ball to a number of backs and receivers in an efficient ball-control offense. Now that Indianapolis has become that kind of team, why wouldn’t one expect the Colts to beat the Chiefs at home?
This game is too close to call, but Indianapolis is in such a good groove right now that it will be hard for the Chiefs to make enough plays to overcome the Colts. Take the Colts on the betting lines.
Pick: Colts PICK