The San Diego Chargers have won 10 of the last 12 games in their longtime rivalry with the Kansas City Chiefs.
Still harbouring hopes of making the playoffs, the Chargers host the Chiefs Sunday afternoon laying double digits against a KC team that struggled in divisional games.
Chiefs-Chargers point spread: Chargers opened as 10-point favorites; the total was 45. (Line updates and matchup report)
Odds Shark computer prediction: 29.1-24.0 Chiefs
Why the Chiefs can cover the spread
Kansas City may be locked into the five seed for the upcoming AFC playoffs, but it won't want to go into those playoffs on a bad note. There's been talk that Coach Reid may rest many of his starters for this game, but considering the Chiefs are just 2-4 over their last six games, that might not be the best of ideas.
KC ranks ninth in the league in rushing, is averaging 27 points per game and is only allowing 19 points per game. If the Chiefs come to play, they'll at least keep this one close.
Why the Chargers can cover the spread
To make the playoffs, San Diego needs help earlier in the day Sunday, in the form of a Miami loss to New York, a Baltimore loss to Cincinnati and then a victory of its own. That three-piece combo might seem unlikely, but much stranger things have happened on the final weekend of an NFL regular season.
The Chargers have won three games in a row, rank sixth in the league in total offense and have out-rushed opponents by 13 yards per game. Out-rushing foes is always a good sign when it comes to covering point spreads. The Chiefs have been road moneymakers in 2013 (6-1 ATS) but they lack motivation here.
The smart pick
The Odds Shark computer is predicting an outright Kansas City victory, but the computer probably isn't considering the circumstances in which these two teams will play Sunday. Playoff-bound Kansas City comes into this game already locked into the five seed in the AFC. San Diego, meanwhile, will know by kickoff whether it's still alive in the playoff hunt.
But even if the Chargers are eliminated from contention before this game begins, they'd probably still love to post a winning record for their first season under their new head coach. Give the points and take the Bolts.
- Chargers are 10-2 SU past 12 versus Chiefs
- Chiefs are 1-7 SU past eight trips to San Diego
- Chiefs are 6-1 ATS on the road in 2013
- UNDER is 5-0-1 past six games when Chiefs were road dogs
- Chiefs are 3-8 SU past 11 divisional games
- Chargers played 5 straight season finales OVER total