Kansas City Chiefs (1-4) at Minnesota Vikings (2-2)
The Vikings hard a weird start to their season, losing 20-3 week 1 in San Francisco in a really late game, giving the lowly 49ers their only win of the season. However, a team seen as a sneaky playoff contender before the season started, Minnesota has lived up to expectations over the past few weeks, beating Detroit and San Diego by double digits and then only losing by a field goal in Denver. They do rank just 20th in rate of moving the chains differential through their first 4 games, but they’re still being dragged down by what should prove to be a very fluky week 1 game. They’re a solid team that will compete for a playoff spot.
Despite that, they’re just 4 point favorites here over a Kansas City team that ranks 25th in rate of moving the chains differential, despite losing Jamaal Charles for the season to a torn ACL last week. Charles was such a big part of the offense, putting up big yardage on the ground and through the air and really being the guy they ran the offense through, because their passing game is still limited. Chancandrick West and Knile Davis aren’t the type of guys who can do that and represent a huge dropoff in talent behind Charles.
They should struggle to run the ball for the rest of the season, especially with a weak offensive line. They’ll have to pass move often, which is not what they want to do. They have no passing game weapons behind wide receiver Jeremy Maclin and tight end Travis Kelce, Alex Smith is a limited quarterback, and the offensive line isn’t giving Smith much time. The Chiefs are 1-4, getting worse, and won’t be much of a threat to anyone going forward. They shouldn’t be only be 4 point road underdogs in Minnesota, especially with Minnesota having an easy game in Detroit next week, though I can’t quite bring myself to put money on this because Minnesota is a heavy public lean and I don’t have a real trend supporting the Vikings.
Update: This line has dropped to 3.5. I’ll bite.
Minnesota Vikings 21 Kansas City Chiefs 13
Pick against the spread: Minnesota -3.5