The San Diego Chargers arrive in the Mile High City on a 5-1 ATS road winning streak in the playoffs after last week's outright win in Cincinnati, while the Denver Broncos were 5-3 ATS at home during the regular season.
With numerous ATS trends favoring the Chargers and facing the same point spread they covered earlier this season here, it's tempting to think they might come to town and beat Peyton Manning in his own backyard again.
Broncos vs. Chargers point spread: Broncos opened as 9-point favorites; the total was 55. (Line updates and matchup report)
Odds Shark computer prediction: 37.1-28.7 Broncos
Why the Chargers can cover the spread
These two already split two close games in the regular season, with the visitor winning each divisional showdown. Confidence is the first step to winning on the road in the playoffs, and there may not be a more confident team in either conference right now than the San Diego Chargers.
With a 6-1-1 ATS streak at Denver, a 6-2-1 ATS streak in nine games as underdog of nine or more points and a 6-1 ATS spree on the road against divisional rivals, a pattern emerges.
They are trying to copy the Baltimore Ravens Super Bowl blueprint from last year, winning as big underdogs on the road week after week.
Why the Broncos can cover the spread
The Broncos lost three games this season, and all three teams are still alive in the AFC playoffs.
First up on the revenge agenda are the Chargers, who won 27-20 in Denver on December 12. With a week to prepare for this one, Denver will be on its best behaviour and aiming to continue its demolition of AFC West foes (14-2 SU).
You can't underestimate the offensive prowess of quarterback Peyton Manning, but the Broncos' last four wins against teams with a .500 record or better was by just seven points.
San Diego has won five straight and covered four of those games. The Bolts covered the only game they were double-digit underdogs, and they have a knack of winning on the road in January.
Take the points and hope the return of Wes Welker doesn’t send the Broncos offense its overdrive.
- Chargers are 6-1-1 ATS past eight visits to Denver
- Chargers are 4-1 ATS past five playoff road games
- Chargers are 6-2-1 ATS past nine games as underdog of nine or more points
- OVER is 10-2-1 past 13 Denver home games
- Broncos are 2-6 ATS past eight playoff games
- OVER is 6-1 past seven Denver playoff games
- Chargers are 6-1 ATS past seven on road vs. divisional foes