Chiefs Look to Gain Control of AFC West in Mexico City
The NFL returns to Mexico City for this week’s edition of Monday Night Football with the Los Angeles Chargers are facing the Kansas City Chiefs. The Chargers are the designated home team. The Chiefs’ once-sizable lead in the AFC West has been trimmed to the narrowest of margins following losses in four of their last six games. The Chiefs look to stem the tide tonight against the Chargers.
TV: 8:15 p.m. ET, ESPN. LINE: Chiefs -4 O/U: 52.5
This will be the fourth NFL regular-season game played at Azteca Stadium. The stadium sits 7,200 feet above sea level. The Over went 2-1 during the previous three games and oddsmakers are expecting a high scoring game tonight. Monday’s forecast calls for partly cloudy skies over Mexico City, with temperatures in the mid-50s at game time. The Chiefs have the Over at 7-3 this year, including 5-2 when QB Patrick Mahomes has started and finished the game. The Chargers have the Under at 7-3.
Los Angeles supporters know all too well the trouble this team has had with their offensive line. Center Mike Pouncey (neck) and guard Forrest Lamp (ankle) were lost for the season in October. LT Russell Okung is listed as questionable for Monday’s game with a strained groin. Okung has played just three games for the Chargers this year.
This, That, and a Dart Throw
Patrick Mahomes didn’t miss a beat in his return from a two-game absence due to a dislocated right kneecap. He completed a career-high 36 passes for 446 yards and three touchdowns on Sunday. Unfortunately for the reigning NFL Most Valuable Player, the impressive afternoon ended with a loss. A blocked field goal in the waning moments of led to Kansas City’s 35-32 setback to Tennessee. The Chiefs’ lead atop the AFC West rests at a half-game over Oakland. Los Angeles resides two back after a 26-24 loss to the Raiders on Nov. 7th.
The Chiefs are 6-4 on the season. Tyreek Hill seamlessly shuffled from catching passes from backup Matt Moore to Mahomes last week. He became the first player in franchise history to record at least 140 receiving yards and a touchdown in consecutive games. Hill followed up his 140-yard effort in a 26-23 win over Minnesota on Nov. 3rd with a career-best 11 catches for 157 yards against the Titans. Damien Williams saw the speedy Hill accompany him on the latter portion of a 91-yard touchdown run versus the Vikings. He had a season-high 24 touches resulting in 109 scrimmage yards (77 rushing, 32 receiving) against Tennessee. Williams had 123 yards (74 receiving, 49 rushing) and two touchdowns in a 29-28 setback to the Chargers on Dec. 13th. It was a decision that snapped Kansas City’s nine-game winning streak in the series.
A healthy dose of Melvin Gordon against Kansas City’s 31st-ranked rushing defense (148.1 yards per game) could be just what Los Angeles needs to control the clock and keep Mahomes on the sidelines. Gordon rushed for a season-high 108 yards and a score last week. He boosted his touchdown total to five (four rushing, one receiving) in his past four games. On the other side of the ball the Chargers are playing well. Defensive ends oey Bosa and Melvin Ingram have combined for nine sacks in the same four-game stretch. Ingram had 1.5 sacks of Mahomes in the meeting last December to boost his total to 5.5 in his past four meetings with the Chiefs.
Quarterback Philip Rivers is fully aware of the magnitude of this matchup. “I don’t think desperation,” Rivers told the Los Angeles Daily News. “I think urgency. Any other word you can think of … I don’t think we feel desperate, although we know how crucial this game is.”
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The Dart Throw: Chiefs 37, Chargers 24
NFL in Mexico City Trends
- Trend Under is 4-1 in Chargers last 5 games as an underdog of 10.5 or greater. Hit % 80.00% (5) O/U 1|4 Push 0 W/L
- Under is 10-3 in Chargers last 13 games as a favorite of 0.5-3.0. 76.90% (13) 3|10 0
- Under is 20-8-1 in Chargers last 29 games as a favorite. 71.40% (29) 8|20 1
- Over is 9-4 in Chargers last 13 games as an underdog of 3.5-10.0. 69.20% (13) 9|4 0
Kansas City Chiefs
- Trend Under is 7-2-1 in Chiefs last 10 games as an underdog of 10.5 or greater. Hit % 77.80% (10) O/U 1|4 Push 0 W/L
- Under is 10-4 in Chiefs last 14 games as a favorite of 0.5-3.0. 71.40% (14) 3|10 0
- Over is 13-2-1 in Chiefs last 16 games as an underdog of 3.5-10.0. 86.70% (16) 9|4 0
- Under is 6-1 in Chiefs last 7 games as a favorite of 10.5 or greater. 85.70% (7) 2|5 0
Chiefs vs Chargers Meeting Trends
- Trend Chiefs are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings. Hit % 80.00% (5) O/U Push 0 W/L 4|1
- Chiefs are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 meetings in Los Angeles. 100.00% (6) 0 6|0
- Road team is 7-1 ATS in their last 8 meetings. 87.50% (8) 0 1|7
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