The Kansas City Chiefs have rebounded from a slow start to the season with five consecutive wins. Meanwhile, after starting the season 3-0, the Las Vegas Raiders have gone 3-6 and lost four of their last five games.
NFL playoff odds should get clearer for some teams in Week 14. This week’s Raiders at Chiefs game is a critical matchup for both teams. If the Raiders win, they’ll pull to within one game of Kansas City. If the Chiefs win, they’ll remain at the top of the division and help solidify their playoff positioning.
There’s a lot on the line in this Week 14 matchup. So let’s look at some of the best wagers for this critical game.
Las Vegas Raiders
The Raiders are averaging 18.8 points per game in the last five games. The team scored only nine points combined in the first half in their previous two losses.
In beating the Dallas Cowboys in Week 12, 36-33, Las Vegas scored 17 points in the first half. Yet, slow starts are only part of the Raiders’ problems.
In last week’s 17-15 loss to the Washington Football Team, Derek Carr completed 73.6% of his passes. Josh Jacobs had another decent day with one running touchdown on 13 carries for 52 and nine catches out of the backfield. Hunter Renfrow proved once again to be Carr’s favorite target, with nine catches of his own for 102 yards.
But while throwing for 249 yards, Derek Carr threw no touchdown passes and got sacked twice. And on third down, the Raiders went 2-for-10. They were also penalized six times for 54 yards.
Carr has been sacked 27 times this season but still maintains a 96.7 rating and a 67.8% completion rate. The good news for Raiders fans is that Derek Carr’s rating rises to over 106 against division opponents.
Kansas City Chiefs
The Chiefs have gone undefeated in their past five games while averaging 23 points per game, although that average is propped up a bit by the 41 points the Chiefs scored against the Raiders in Week 12.
Last week, Kansas City beat the Denver Broncos 22-9 after jumping to a 10-0 first-quarter lead. Patrick Mahomes was 15-for-29 for 184 yards and one interception. Mahomes had a 44.3 rating and ran for one touchdown.
The Chiefs had only 15 first downs and a time of possession of 26:30. Kansas City also went 5-for-12 on third down.
Against Denver, the game-changer came in the fourth quarter. Daniel Sorensen intercepted a pass and returned it 75 yards for a Kansas City touchdown. The Chiefs went up 22-3 and never looked back.
Raiders at Chiefs (-9.5)
The Chiefs are only 2-5 against the spread at home, while the Raiders are 3-2 on the road. Neither team has shown much scoring power recently, but the Chiefs’ defense is imposing their will on the field and forcing turnovers at critical moments in a game like they did last week against Denver.
Kansas City leads the NFL with a 50.7% efficiency rate on third down, and the Raiders are 30th at 33.8%. On fourth down, the Chiefs convert 63.6% of the time to the Raiders’ 46.2%.
The over/under for this game is 48.5 points. The Chiefs give up the eighth-fewest passing yards per game (252.2), so I could see the Raiders getting off to another slow start. In the past five weeks, the offense has only scored more than last week’s total (22) once, which was against a 41-point showing against the Raiders. I’m taking the under in this game based on the Chiefs’ recent offensive struggles and my belief that Kansas City’s defense will hold the Raiders to less than three touchdowns.
I also think the point spread is too much for the Chiefs to cover at home. As stated before, other than the last time these two teams played, the Chiefs haven’t scored over 22 points. Patrick Mahomes hasn’t thrown a touchdown pass in the past two games. To me, the last game against the Raiders was an outlier. I think the Chiefs win a low-scoring game this week, 21-14.
I will take the 9.5 points, but I’m picking the Kansas City Chiefs to win the game 21-17.
Do You Believe the Chiefs Will Cover in Week 14?
I believe that the Raiders at Chiefs matchup will be a low-scoring defensive battle.
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