By Eric Schmidt

As NFL fans realize, the time and space continuum speeds up just a bit once the regular season starts and weeks fly by at record speed. It seems as if the opening weekend just ended and now, here we are at the start of Week Two of the NFL regular season in the blink of an eye. Tonight’s games features the Denver Broncos at the Kansas City Chiefs.  Both clubs came away with a win in the regular season opener last week, but the teams seem to be moving in opposite directions after a week in.

Tonight’s contest is a tough division contest between the Broncos and the Chiefs. 12 times in Broncos QB Peyton Manning’s career he has faced the Chiefs, and posted an 11-1 overall SU record. He is 6-0 SU versus the Chiefs since he’s played for Denver and 4-2 ATS. However, since Manning has been under center for the Broncos, only six times has Denver been a dog and the team has logged a 2-4 record SU in those games.

Arrowhead Stadium is one of the toughest venues to play in the NFL. Last season, the Chiefs put a 41-14 beatdown on the eventual Super Bowl Patriots, 41-14, a loss that triggered many to start second guessing whether QB Tom Brady should still be the signal caller.

Denver comes into tonight’s game with two key players dinged up, RB C. J. Anderson (foot)  and WR Demaryius Thomas (hand). On top of those injuries, bettors are looking at the fact that the Broncos managed just 219 yards of offense, the lowest output since Manning joined Denver. Early reports this evening suggest Anderson will play this evening.

A key stat to consider in tonight’s game is that the Under has come in 4-1-1 in the last six contests. Against Baltimore, Denver held the Ravens to just 2 of 13 3rd down conversions. Conversely, the Kansas City defense held Houston to just 3 of 13 3rd down attempts.

The Broncos have won 12 consecutive road divisional games and are currently tied for an NFL record with the San Francisco 49ers during the 1987-1990 period.

I agree that Manning has not looked strong in the preseason and he struggled last Sunday. He is not throwing 50 touchdown passes this year, but that dropoff in production was expected. I am not taking the knee jerk reaction that the Broncos are done. Kansas City played a Houston Texans team with a serious quarterback issue and playing without their bellcow running back Arian Foster.

The Broncos lean more on a running game and a stout defense this season instead of Manning’s arm. I don’t see Chiefs QB Alex Smith putting up another 22-33-243-3-0 line against a divisional foe with a stronger defense.

Denver Broncos at Kansas City Chiefs (-3) O/U 42.5

I am not buying the early reports of Manning’s demise. We are one week into the regular season with Manning playing in a new system. Overreaction runs rampant this time of the year. Calm down.  The Papa John’s spokeman still has a couple wins left in that arm and it continues tonight in what is a defensive struggle. Take the Broncos and the points and the under. Denver 23 Kansas City 16

 

 

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Filed under: AFC, AFC West, Denver Broncos, Kansas City Chiefs, NFL, NFL Against the Spread

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