The Chiefs are 5-0 for the second consecutive season, and they are one of only two remaining unbeaten teams in the NFL.
But if the oddsmakers in Las Vegas are correct, they won’t be undefeated much longer.
The Chiefs are 3 1/2-point underdogs against the Patriots on Sunday night, despite their sizzling start to 2018.
It’s quite rare for a team to be undefeated this late in the year and be an underdog in a game — it hasn’t happened since 2013, per Scores And Odds. (Ironically enough, that was also the Chiefs, who lost to the Denver Broncos.)
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But there are several factors at play. The Patriots are not only playing a third consecutive home game, they are operating with nine days of rest after beating the Colts on a Thursday night game Oct. 4. The Chiefs are also coming off a physical game against the Jaguars, in which key players were injured. The bettors tend to look at such situations and act accordingly. Here, the fallback is Kansas City being an underdog by more than a field goal on the road.
But fear not: The Chiefs have won seven of nine since the start of 2016 when they enter a game as the underdogs, according to Scores and Odds. That’s 7-2 outright, not just against the spread. They are 4-1 against the spread this season, with the only slip in Denver.
Although the Chiefs are projected to lose Sunday night, the oddsmakers don’t envision the same midseason slump the team endured last year, when a 5-0 start turned into a 6-6 record two months later. Kansas City remains the favorite to win the AFC, per Bovada, still slightly ahead of the Patriots. That would surely change if the Patriots protect their home venue in Foxborough, Mass. The Jaguars fell to a distant third in the AFC race after losing soundly at Arrowhead Stadium last weekend.
Kansas City is listed at 6-1 to win the Super Bowl, the second-best listing. The Los Angeles Rams are the betting favorites at 3-1. Those two teams meet in Mexico on Nov. 19.