Chiefs-Broncos MNF Betting Preview: How to Bet the Season’s Highest Over/Under
USA Today Sports. Pictured: Patrick Mahomes, Von Miller
Betting odds: Kansas City Chiefs at Denver Broncos
- Spread: Chiefs -3.5
- Over/Under: 55.5
- Time: 8:15 p.m. ET
- TV channel: ESPN
>> All odds as of Sunday evening. Download The Action Network App to get real-time NFL odds and track your bets
Betting market: This line has been a roller coaster. It’s swung from Chiefs -5 to -4, up to -5.5 and finally to -3.5 as of writing (see live odds here).
More than 60% of bets have come in on Kansas City, but there’s no question that the sharper bets are on Denver.
If this total closes at 55.5, it would be the highest of the season and the highest in Denver since Peyton Manning’s famous 2013 season. — Mark Gallant
Did you know? Since 1990, the Chiefs have never been favored by more than 1.5 points in Denver. — John Ewing
Trends to know: This is only the 13th prime-time game since 2003 to open with a total of 55 or higher. The over has gone 9-3 in the past 12 instances, with the total going over by 5.4 points per game
We’re also approaching one of the highest Monday Night Football totals in history. Only four MNF games have eclipsed the over/under mark of 54, and all four had at least 50 points scored. — Evan Abrams
Highest Monday Night Football Over/Unders:
Metrics that matter: The Chiefs might have one of the league’s worst defenses, yet heading into Week 4, they led the NFL in defensive third-down conversion rate.
Kansas City’s opponents are 8-of-31 (25%) on third down, which has killed drives and handed the ball back to Chiefs’ electric offense, which has converted 50% of its third downs.
That impressive clip won’t continue, as I expect the Chiefs — who have allowed an NFL-worst 2.86 points per drive through Week 3 — to allow a third-down conversion rate of closer to 40%, which is right around where they ended last season. — Stuckey
Injury watch: The Broncos have lost starting tight end Jake Butt (knee) for the season, but their offense should otherwise be healthy.
The defense isn’t as lucky, as cornerbacks Adam Jones (thigh) and Tramaine Brock (groin), linebacker Brandon Marshall (knee), defensive tackle Shelby Harris (ankle) and safety Dymonte Thomas (abdominal) weren’t able to start the week off with a full practice.
The Chiefs defense isn’t expected to be at full strength, wither, with linebackers Dee Ford (groin) and Terrance Smith (shin) joining all-world safety Eric Berry (heel) on the sideline during practice this week.
The good news for Kansas City is that its ever-explosive offense is fully healthy.
DFS edge: The Broncos have struggled to replace Aqib Talib on the outside.
Jones and Bradley Roby rank among Pro Football Focus’ bottom 25 cornerbacks this season, while Chris Harris Jr. has continued to line up in the slot on the majority (61%) of his snaps.
This means that we can expect Tyreek Hill to have more than a few chances against Jones and Roby. The two have combined to allow a 20-228-1 line on 24 targets into their coverage this season.
Hill has scored 17 touchdowns in 17 career road games, including three total scores in his only career appearance at Mile High Stadium.
Bet to watch: Under 55.5
I feel like I am going to regret this, but I like the under here.
Since 1985, the Broncos have played only six games at home with an over/under listed at the key number of 55 or more. Manning started all six against a variety of quarterbacks — Tom Brady, Philip Rivers, Drew Brees, Michael Vick and Robert Griffin III.
No road team scored 28 points, with five of the six scoring 21 points or fewer. (Five of the six games went under the first-half total, too.)
Since 1999 — the year after John Elway retired — the under has gone 6-1 in the seven home games with a total above 48 when Manning wasn’t starting at quarterback for the Broncos.
I’ll take my chances on the first-half and full-game unders on Monday night. — Abrams
Editor’s note: The opinions on this game are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.