NFL Week 12 Picks: San Diego Chargers vs. Kansas City Chiefs

San Diego Chargers vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Sunday, 11/24/13, 1:00 PM EST
Opening Point Spread:  Kansas City -4.5
Current Betting Line:  Kansas City -3.5
Opening Total:  41.5
Current Total:  43
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker

Broncos vs. Chiefs NFL Preview
The Kansas City Chiefs will look to bounce back from their first loss of the 2013 NFL season

San Diego has lost and failed to cover the number in its last three games, including a 20-16 setback to the Miami Dolphins as 2.5-point road favorites last Sunday, while going UNDER the betting total for the fifth time in six contests.  The Chargers know they must keep quarterback Philip Rivers upright in the pocket, as they face a pair of ferocious pass rushers, which is important to consider when making your NFL betting picks.  The franchise has won nine of the last 11 meetings in this series.  San Diego is 1-9 SU and 1-8-1 ATS in Weeks 10 through 13 the last two-plus seasons.

The Chargers should try to establish the run game early in hopes of quieting the crowd at Arrowhead Stadium, with running back Ryan Mathews coming off a season-high 127-yard performance.  He has gone over the century mark in three of his last five games, averaging 5.2 yards per carry during that stretch.  It’s important to point out that Sunday’s opponent hasn’t allowed a 100-yard rusher or a rushing touchdown at home this season.

Kansas City’s perfect season came to an end last week, as it looks to bounce back from a 27-17 setback to the Denver Broncos as 7.5-point road underdogs, while losing the statistical battle for a third consecutive contest.  The Chiefs are 23-18 SU all-time against the Chargers at this venue, which is hard to ignored when looking over the pro football odds page.  Quarterback Alex Smith must take some shots down field to open up the offense, as he ranks last in the league in averaging 5.97 yards per passing attempt.  Kansas City is 0-4 ATS as home favorites of 3.5 to 7 points since 2011, with no clear edge in terms of the betting total (2-2 Over/Under).

The Chiefs will rely heavily on star running back Jamaal Charles in this affair, as he’s averaging 118.6 yards from scrimmage, as he prepares to face a defense that gives up 5.0 yards per carry.  He’s a major weapon out of the backfield for Smith to target—leading the squad with 49 receptions.

Sports bettors will likely play the total, as the OVER is 40-19-4 in the Chargers’ last 63 road games.

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