Los Angeles Chargers (1-0) at Kansas City Chiefs (1-0)
This line favors the Chiefs at home by 4.5 points, suggesting they’re the noticeably better of these two teams. In my season previews, I had the Chargers slightly ahead of the Chiefs and winning the AFC West, but I don’t disagree that the Chiefs are the better team at the moment. They had the better week 1 performance of these two teams, posting the best efficiency rating of the week, on the road in Arizona, impressive even against a banged up Cardinals team, while the Chargers lost the first down rate and yards per play battle at home to the Raiders, winning by 5 points only because they won the turnover battle by 3, which is not predictive week-to-week.
The Chiefs are also the healthier team right now, with the Chargers missing talented wide receiver Keenan Allen with a hamstring injury he suffered week 1, already without top cornerback JC Jackson, whose free agent addition was a big part of the reason why I expected a significant improvement from the Chargers this season. The Chargers still have fellow off-season addition Khalil Mack and are still overall improved on defense, while their offense is still at least above average even without Allen, but my roster rankings have the Chiefs about three points better than the Chargers right now, so this line is about right. I’m still taking the Chargers because I think a 3-4 point game is more likely than a 6-7 point game, but this is one of my lowest confidence picks of the week.
Kansas City Chiefs 31 Los Angeles Chargers 27
Pick against the spread: LA Chargers +4.5