NFL betting: Market still very high on the Chiefs despite awful ATS record

·5 min read

The Kansas City Chiefs have lost two straight games and currently find themselves at the bottom of the AFC West with a 1-2 record. If not for a dropped snap by a punter in Week 1, the Chiefs could very easily be 0-3. The offense has been as expected, save for Sunday's three turnovers. Their defense is a major concern, however. 

As sports fans, we're conditioned to live in the moment and react in real time to what we're seeing unfold on the field. This is a dangerous way of living. We're often told not to overreact, but that's easier said than done. 

One source of levity in these situations is usually the betting market. If the market overreacts, they open themselves up to significant losses from more logical and less emotional bettors. In the case of the Chiefs, the betting market still strongly believes in them.

Co-favorites to win it all

Who does the betting market have as the favorite to win the Super Bowl? The Chiefs find themselves on top of the list, with their current odds set at +600.

The Chiefs are tied atop the board with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The two teams are both coming off losses, but they met in the Super Bowl last season and currently find themselves as the co-favorites to win it all again.

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND - SEPTEMBER 19: Quarterback Patrick Mahomes #15 of the Kansas City Chiefs drops back to pass against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on September 19, 2021 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Quarterback Patrick Mahomes of the Kansas City Chiefs drops back to pass against the Baltimore Ravens in Week 2. (Rob Carr/Getty Images)

The Rams, who are coming off a win against the Buccaneers, are the third favorites at +850. The Ravens and Chargers, who have beaten the Chiefs in back-to-back weeks, find themselves at 16-to-1 and 18-to-1 respectively to win the Super Bowl.

The Chiefs have appeared in back-to-back Super Bowls and it could be three straight if Dee Ford didn't lineup offsides in the AFC championship game in 2019. Kansas City won the Super Bowl in 2020 and was the favorite last year before losing to Tampa Bay.

Still favorites to win the AFC

Despite eight teams in the conference having a better record than the Chiefs, Kansas City is still the favorite to win the AFC at BetMGM. In fact, it's not particularly close.

The Chiefs sit at +260 to win the conference currently. Buffalo has the next best odds at +400. Behind the Bills are the Cleveland Browns at +700 and the Baltimore Ravens at +750.

This season, we've already seen Baker Mayfield complete 75% of his passes and throw for 321 yards while his rushing attack added over 150 yards on the ground against Kansas City. We saw Lamar Jackson rush for 107 yards and two touchdowns while posting 36 points on the board against the Chiefs.

We also saw the Chiefs combine to score 65 points in those two games, proving that teams can't slow down this offense. Therein lies the issue. 

Assuming Kansas City makes the playoffs (they almost certainly will), a quarterback will need to outperform Mahomes in a playoff game. We've seen AFC quarterbacks like Mayfield, Josh Allen, Deshaun Watson, Ryan Tannehill and Andrew Luck try. They all failed. The only quarterback to beat Mahomes in a playoff game is Tom Brady. 

Odds-on favorites to win the AFC West

In an imaginary world, there's a football division with four teams. Two of the teams have 3-0 records. The other team is 2-1, coming off an impressive road win as a 7-point underdog against an elite team in their division. The final team is 1-2 and they are the team that lost the game in the previously mentioned scenario. 

Now, what if I told you that the 1-2 team was still favorite to win their division? Not just favorite, but odds-on favorite at -125. This is not an imaginary world, this is the real world, and that team is the Chiefs. 

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - SEPTEMBER 26: Justin Herbert #10 of the Los Angeles Chargers is tackled by Michael Danna #51 of the Kansas City Chiefs during the second half at Arrowhead Stadium on September 26, 2021 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by David Eulitt/Getty Images)
Justin Herbert of the Los Angeles Chargers is tackled by a Kansas City Chiefs' defender during Week 3. (David Eulitt/Getty Images)

The Las Vegas Raiders are 3-0, winning two games in overtime and two games as underdogs of at least 3-points. The Denver Broncos are 3-0, winning all three games comfortably against some of the league's worst teams. The Los Angeles Chargers are 2-1, featuring one of the league's more exciting young quarterbacks in Justin Herbert.

Despite all of this, oddsmakers still see the Chiefs as clear favorites to win the division. The Broncos at +350 are the second favorites. Despite currently sitting at the bottom of the standings, the Chiefs are -125 favorites to be at the top when all is said and done. 

What about on a weekly basis?

Have you been betting on the Kansas City Chiefs lately? If so, I hope you've been practicing strong bankroll management. If not, check out some reviews on bankruptcy attorneys. 

Kansas City is 0-3 against the spread this season, failing to cover in all three of their games as favorites. They've lost two of the games outright. The start of this season is actually a continuation of a trend that began to develop last season.

Over their last 14 games (almost a full season), the Chiefs are 1-12-1 against the spread. This season, they're failing to cover by a margin of 6.3-points per game. 

In Week 4, Kansas City will once again find itself in the favorite role. They are currently 6-point road favorites against the Philadelphia Eagles at BetMGM.

The market expects the Chiefs to rebound and be in the thick of things in terms of competing for a Super Bowl and winning their division. However, it's anyone's guess as to when the Chiefs will rebound in terms of the week-to-week market. At this point, betting against the Chiefs on a weekly basis has been an extremely lucrative endeavor. 

Stats from TeamRankings.com and Pro-Football-Reference

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