Atlanta Falcons (0-0 SU, 0-0 ATS) vs. Kansas City Chiefs (0-0 SU, 0-0 ATS)
NFL Week 1
Date/Time: Sunday, September 9th, 2012/1:00 p.m. EST
Where: Arrowhead Stadium, Kansas City, Mo.
TV: FOX Network
by Badger, Football Handicapper, Predictem.com
Point Spread: Atl. -2.5/KC +2.5
Over/Under Total: 42
The Kansas City Chiefs are excited for a chance at a fresh
start in 2012, and all of that optimism will be put to the test in their
NFL regular season opener Sunday when the Chiefs host the Atlanta
Falcons at Arrowhead Stadium on Fox.
Romeo Crennel had the interim tag removed from his head coaching duties in Kansas City, and along with an all new offensive staff (OC Brian Daboll from Miami) the Chiefs are looking at getting back into the race in the wide-open AFC West. With a new staff and new direction for the team, its ironically the same old players, or more specifically the return to health of multiple key players on both sides of the ball that have the Chiefs so excited for the new season.
The first test for the new-look Chiefs is one of the NFCs best teams, the Atlanta Falcons, who also have a new scheme on offense under new coordinator Dirk Koetter. Many in Atlanta are also excited because Koetter has vowed to take the shackles off the predictable Falcons power-running game and open things up a little, which many are figuring means more options for QB Matt Ryan, more opportunities for Roddy White and Julio Jones, and more of Jacquizz Rodgers at running back and less pound-it-every-play with Michael Turner.
With a lot of uncertainty surrounding this game, oddsmakers originally opened the point spread for this game with Atlanta as slim 1-point favorites on the road in hostile Arrowhead. After a month of being up on the board the point spread has moved over a point to Falcons minus -2.5 at most offshore sportsbooks on the Web. There are a few still sitting at minus -1 (5Dimes, Caesars), but most of the other books have all moved the number up in response to early money on the Falcons.
The over/under total opened at 41.5 and is still sitting in the same ballpark, with most sportsbooks up to 42 on the board right now. You can even find the total as low as 41 at a few books, so shop around if you need the extra point.
Did you know… that you there are sportsbooks out there that allow you to risk only -105 on football and basketball games? You’re probably laying -110 which means you’re wasting money! Make the switch today, you’ll be glad that yuo did: 5Dimes. (You will likely need to deposit using person to person, 2nd deposit can be made via credit card though)
Most of the uncertainty surrounding this game is due to the fact that neither team (i.e. mostly K.C.) did much of anything on offense in the preseason. Kansas City averaged just 15 points in the preseason, and if you throw out the 27 they ran up late on a sucky Arizona team, they barely get double-digits. Atlanta struggled to look good at times on offense this preseason too, scoring 20 in the crucial third-game against the Dolphins, but they took almost three full quarters to do it.
And if a lack of cohesion on offense isnt enough to cause you some mixed feelings about this game, the fact that both teams got better on defense should get your attention. Atlanta addressed their need for a second corner by getting Asanti Samuel in a trade, and KC will get Eric Berry back at safety after an ACL all of last season. The Chiefs may be thin at corner due to Brandon Flowers continued heel issues (questionable), especially if Atlanta comes out trying to spread the ball around.
These two havent met for an NFC-AFC clash since the 2008 season, a 38-14 win for Atlanta (and -6.5-point cover too) in the Georgia Dome. The previous meeting in 2004 in Kansas City has vastly different results, with the Chiefs winning 56-10 to easily cover the 3.5-point spread. Historically, KC is a perfect 3-0 SU and 3-0 ATS in the three games played in Kansas City.
The under is perhaps the best betting trend play in this game, going 6-2 in Atlantas last eight openers and 12-2 in the Chiefs last 14 home games at Arrowhead.
Badger’s Pick to Cover the Point Spread: If talent meant everything in the NFL, then I would say this is an easy one for Atlanta. But we all know the most talented team doesnt always win. Plus Arrowhead Stadium is a beast. But I also am very scared by the Chiefs new offense, so much that Im waiting a week or two before wagering anything on the Chiefs until I see something. Im taking the under of 42 in what I expect could turn into an ugly game.
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