Sunday, January 23, 2022

Sunday Night Football odds, spread, line: Chiefs vs. Broncos picks, NFL predictions from expert on 20-6 roll

The Denver Broncos aim to keep things rolling with an interesting challenge on Sunday Night Football in Week 13. The Broncos visit Arrowhead Stadium to face an AFC West rival in the Kansas City Chiefs. Kansas City is 7-4 overall and on a four-game winning streak. Denver is 6-5 in 2021 following three wins in the last four games, and the Broncos are 3-2 on the road this season.

Caesars Sportsbook lists the Chiefs as 8.5-point home favorites in Kansas City, and kick-off is scheduled for 8:20 p.m. ET. The total number of points Vegas thinks will be scored, or the over-under, is 46.5 in the latest odds. Before you make any Broncos vs. Chiefs picks and NFL predictions, make sure you check out what SportsLine NFL expert Larry Hartstein has to say.

A former lead writer for Covers and The Linemakers, Hartstein combines a vast network of Vegas sources with an analytical approach he honed while working for Pro Football Focus. Entering the 2021 campaign, Hartstein was 351-291 all-time on NFL sides, returning more than $2,200 for $100 bettors. 

In addition, Hartstein is an expert on the Chiefs. He is a blistering 20-6 in his last 26 against-the-spread picks involving Kansas City, returning more than $1,300 for $100 bettors. Anyone who has followed him is way up.

Now, Hartstein has set his sights on Broncos vs. Chiefs and just locked in his expert picks and predictions. You can head to SportsLine now to see Hartstein’s NFL picks. Now, here are several NFL betting lines and trends for Broncos vs. Chiefs:

  • Chiefs vs. Broncos spread: Chiefs -8.5 
  • Chiefs vs. Broncos over-under: 46.5 points 
  • Chiefs vs. Broncos money line: Chiefs -420, Broncos +320 
  • DEN: The Broncos are 6-5 against the spread in 2021 
  • KC: The Chiefs are 4-7 against the spread this season

Featured Game | Kansas City Chiefs vs. Denver Broncos

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Why the Broncos can cover

Denver’s defense is performing at a high level. The Broncos are No. 3 in the NFL in scoring defense, allowing only 17.8 points per game. Denver is also a top-10 team in total defense (330.8 yards allowed per contest), and the Broncos land in the top four in points allowed per drive (1.66) and first downs allowed (197) this season. Denver is above-average against the run, holding opponents to 106.6 yards per game, and No. 2 in allowing only six rushing touchdowns. 

The Broncos are also in the top 10 in pass defense, yielding only 224.2 yards per game, which is crucial against Kansas City’s high-powered passing offense. Denver is currently in the top three of the NFL in completion rate allowed (58.6 percent) and quarterback rating allowed (82.7) this season. The Broncos are also opportunistic, generating 10 interceptions and leading the NFL in fourth down defense, with the opposition converting only 27.8 percent of attempts this season.

Why the Chiefs can cover

Kansas City’s offense is highly prolific and, even against a solid Broncos defense, the Chiefs have the advantage. For one, Andy Reid is a blistering 19-3 when coming off a bye in his head coaching career, and the combination of Reid and Patrick Mahomes is terrifying to the opposition. From there, the Chiefs are averaging 402.4 total yards per game this season, the second-best mark in the NFL, and Kansas City leads the league in yards per drive (39.8), first downs (281) and third down efficiency (51.5 percent). 

The Chiefs are in the top five in passing offense (290.5 yards per game), with 25 passing touchdowns (third-most) and only 20 sacks allowed. Kansas City is also scoring 25.5 points per game, a top-10 figure, and averaging 4.6 yards per carry on the ground. The Chiefs have battled turnover issues in 2021, but Kansas City remains as explosive as ever, and the trio of Mahomes, Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce form the NFL’s most dangerous passing offense.

How to make Broncos vs. Chiefs picks

Hartstein has analyzed this matchup and while we can tell you he’s leaning under on the point total, he has discovered a critical X-factor that has him jumping all over one side of the spread. He’s only sharing what it is, and which side to back, at SportsLine.

So who wins Broncos vs. Chiefs? And what critical X-factor makes one side of the spread a must-back? Visit SportsLine now to see Hartstein’s Broncos vs. Chiefs pick, all from the NFL expert who’s 20-6 on picks involving Kansas City, and find out.

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