Minnesota Vikings at Kansas City Chiefs
Sunday, 10/2/11, 1:00 PM EST, TV: FOX
Opening Point Spread: Minnesota Pick’em
Current Betting Line: Minnesota -2.5
Opening Total: 40
Current Total: 39.5
Odds Courtesy of Bookmaker
The Minnesota Vikings and Kansas City Chiefs are both looking for their first victory of the season and will be trying to avoid an 0-4 start when they meet on Sunday at Arrowhead Stadium. The Vikings have come much closer to earning their first win of the year but have blown double-digit halftime leads in all three of their games so far while the Chiefs are coming off their best effort of the season.
Kansas City nearly upset AFC West rival San Diego last week but fell just short in a 20-17 loss. The Chiefs covered as 14.5-point underdogs, with Chargers safety Eric Weddle picking off quarterback Matt Cassel with 55 seconds remaining. Cassel had pulled his team to within a field goal with 4:58 left when he connected with tight end Leonard Pope on a 1-yard touchdown.
That was the closest KC has come to a victory this year, as the team was blown out by a combined score of 89-10 in its previous two games. Meanwhile, Minnesota (-2.5, O/U 39.5) has taken leads on all three of its opponents this season only to fall apart in the second half.
The Vikings have outscored the opposition 54-7 in the first half and led each of their last two games by at least 17 points at halftime. The problem is, they have scored only six points in the second half this year. And that’s a big problem.
Minnesota QB Donovan McNabb has not exactly thrived with his new team, as he ranks 30th in the NFL in passing yards with 478. Cassel ranks second to last in the league with 428. The advantage McNabb has though is that he still has his top running back behind him in Adrian Peterson, who will be facing a Chiefs run defense surrendering 123 rushing yards per game.
Cassel lost the services of the offense’s most valuable player in a 48-3 loss at Detroit in Week 2 when RB Jamaal Charles went down with a torn ACL in his left knee. Reserves Dexter McCluster and Thomas Jones have tried to pick up the slack in Charles’ absence, but the team is averaging just 3.0 yards per carry.
Kansas City has won the last three home meetings with the Vikings along with three of the past four overall, although the teams have played just once since 2003. The OVER is 4-2 in the last six meetings and has cashed in two of three games for each team overall this year as well.
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