Denver Broncos quarterback Teddy Bridgewater (5) calls a play against the Los Angeles Chargers during the first half of an NFL football game, Sunday, Nov. 28, 2021, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
The battle for first place in the AFC West heats up on Sunday Night Football as the Kansas City Chiefs host the Denver Broncos as home favorites
Fresh off a bye, the Chiefs have climbed to the top of the division while winning four straight, while the Broncos have kept pace with wins in three of four outings
Read on for all the odds and trends ahead of this key Week 13 matchup at Arrowhead Stadium
The Kansas City Chiefs will be aiming to pad their lead atop the AFC West standings with a fifth straight victory when they host the division rival Denver Broncos on Sunday Night Football as 9.5-point home favorites. The Chiefs climbed into first place with a 19-9 win in Dallas on Thanksgiving Day.
The Broncos cleared the way for Kansas City by knocking off the Los Angeles Chargers 28-13 last weekend, and remain just one game back of the Chiefs after posting wins in three of their past four outings.
Denver Broncos vs Kansas City Chiefs Odds
Total at DraftKings
O 47 (-115)
Kansas City Chiefs
U 47 (-105)
*Odds taken at DraftKings on December 4, 2021.
Start time of Sunday night’s contest is set for 8:20pm ET at Arrowhead Stadium. Mostly clear skies and frosty temperatures are in the Sunday weather forecast, with the mercury expected to dip to 10 degrees Fahrenheit with brisk winds at game time.
Broncos vs Chiefs Line Movement
Sunday night’s clash marks the first of two meetings this season between these divisional rivals. The Chiefs have dominated Denver in head-to-head action, taking home straight up wins in each of their past 11 matchups, capped by a 22-16 victory on home turf in Week 13 last season. Kansas City has also paid out with regularity when battling the Broncos, covering nine of their 11 recent wins. Low scoring has been commonplaces in recent dates, with the UNDER paying out in five of their past six meetings, including three straight at Arrowhead Stadium.
Here are the AFC West Standings through 11 games! The Chiefs atop of the West still, but the Broncos have a chance to take that crown this Sunday Night in Kansas City. 👀🔥 pic.twitter.com/gAVvvrkPlk
— broncosroute (@broncosrouteig) December 1, 2021
The spread has held steady since opening with Kansas City pegged as 9.5-point chalk. However, the Chiefs have attracted the support of sports bettors, with 57% of wagers backing KC. Conversely, the total has been in steady decline since opening at 49.5, although 87% of public bets currently back the number to go OVER 47.
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Denver Broncos Outlook
Losers of four straight during the month of October, the Broncos have stormed back into playoff contention by posting SU wins in three of their past four outings, capped by last weekend’s clutch victory over the Chargers. The team’s current surge features a 30-16 win in Dallas four weeks ago as 10-point underdogs that marks their biggest upset victory on the road in 16 years. However, the team’s dismal recent track record against the Chiefs, whom they face twice over the final six weeks of the regular season, is a big factor in Denver’s weak position as a +800 bet to win the AFC West in the NFL divisional odds.
Broncos have downgraded RB Melvin Gordon (shoulder/hip) from DOUBTFUL to OUT for Sunday’s game at Chiefs.
He and Javonte Williams have split carries in all 11 games this year. This will now be Williams’ first chance at a full workload.#BroncosCountry #FPC #NFL #SNF #DENvsKC
— Full Press NFL (@FullPressNFL) December 4, 2021
While the Broncos have averaged 29.5 points per game over their two most recent victories, they face a huge challenge to duplicate that effort in Kansas City, where they have averaged just 12.2 points per game over their past five visits. And the absence of injured rusher Melvin Gordon III, who has run for three scores over the past four games will not help the Broncos against a Chiefs rush defense that has surrendered just 87.2 rushing yards per game and one total score over the past six games.
#Broncos Teddy Bridgewater continues to wear soccer shin guard on right shin. And Bolles is back. He’s in the second line. #Denver7 pic.twitter.com/cpR6K8p46o
— Troy Renck (@TroyRenck) December 2, 2021
That places an added burden on Denver quarterback Teddy Bridgewater. The veteran pivot has connected on just three scoring passes over his past four outings, and was forced to briefly leave last week’s win over the Chargers after suffering a leg injury.
Kansas City Chiefs Outlook
The Chiefs turned in another magnificent defensive performance in their Thanksgiving win over the Cowboys. The Kansas City pass defense gave Dak Prescott trouble all day, limiting him to just 216 passing yards, and keeping him out of the end zone while intercepting two passes. Overall, the Chiefs have now allowed just 11.75 points per game during their 4-0 SU run,
Clyde Edwards-Helaire missed practice today with stomach flu but Chiefs expect him to play Sunday night against Broncos
— Adam Teicher (@adamteicher) December 3, 2021
Now well rested after enjoying a bye last week, the Chiefs return to action in relatively good health. However, KC is not without injuries. Both cornerback Rashad Fenton and tackle Lucas Niang are both set to miss Sunday’s contest due to injury, while Clyde Edwards-Helaire remains listed as questionable. The diminutive rusher found the end zone for the first time this season in Dallas after missing five games due to a serious knee injury but was forced to miss practice on Friday after reportedly coming done with stomach flu.
The Pick: UNDER 47 (-105) – 1 unit