NFL Predictions Week 8: San Diego Chargers vs. Kansas City Chiefs, Monday Night Football

San Diego Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs
Sunday, 10/31/11, 8:30 PM EST, TV:  ESPN
Opening Point Spread:  San Diego -3.5
Current Betting Line:  San Diego -3
Opening Total:  44
Current Total:  44.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

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San Diego Chargers QB Philip Rivers has thrown nine interceptions already this season

San Diego came off its bye week and dropped a 27-21 contest to the New York Jets, while going over the total for the second consecutive week.  “We just need to play better and put a complete game together,” commented Chargers quarterback Philip Rivers.  “We still haven’t put one together and we’re 4-2.”  The Chargers will be closing out their season series against the Chiefs, tallying a 20-17 win as 14.5-point home favorites in Week 3.  All focus in practice this week has been avoiding back-to-back losses for the first time in more than a year.  San Diego is 6-8 ATS versus division opponents.

The Chargers are well aware of what happened versus the Chiefs last year on Monday Night Football, opening up the season with a 21-14 loss despite winning the statistical battle by a 389-197 margin.  San Diego needs a big game from quarterback Philip Rivers, who has completed 65 percent of his passes for 1,715 yards, but has also thrown for just seven touchdowns and nine interceptions.  The team should come in with confidence knowing its won seven of the last eight in this series.

Kansas City has rebounded from starting the season with three losses, winning three games in a row coming into this AFC West matchup.  The Chiefs are coming off an impressive 28-0 win over the Oakland Raiders as 3.5-point road underdogs.  It was a surprising result when considering that the first two wins came against Minnesota and Indianapolis, two teams that were down and out early on.  Kansas City is 5-9 ATS versus division opponents, but 7-4 ATS in October.

The Chiefs certainly know what’s at stake with a victory, claiming at least a share of the division lead.  Kansas City has won just once at home against San Diego since the 2006 campaign.  The main focus this week in practice has been to sustain drives, as the team lost the time-of-possession battle by more than nine minutes, while it averaged just 4.8 yards per play.  There’s a good chance that the game will be decided on the ground, as the Chargers are giving up an average of 121.7 rushing yards per game, while the Chiefs are averaging 129.3 per game.

Bettors will likely back the Chargers due to their 6-2 ATS mark as a road favorite of a field goal or less, while the Chiefs are 0-5 ATS in their last five home games versus a team with a winning road record.

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