NFL Week 12 Betting – It’s Try, Try Again for Winless Raiders vs. KC
John BensonNo comments
Last season, the Kansas City Chiefs were unexpected contenders in the AFC West. However, they were ousted in the first round of the playoffs and many pundits chalked up the regular season success to a weak schedule.
After a 2-3 start to the year, it looked as though the pundits may have been right.
But the Chiefs (7-3, 3-2 away) have won five straight since – while playing the seventh toughest schedule in the NFL – and are now tied for second in the AFC and first place in their division.
Said linebacker Tamba Hali, “It feels good to know that we were able to bounce back after a poor start at the beginning of the season. But we have a lot of work to do.”
The work, for this week, is a Thursday tilt at the winless Oakland Raiders (0-10, 0-5 home). Kansas City coach Andy Reid is doing his best to make sure his squad is ready to go on four days’ rest.
Regarding the short week, Reid said, “You don’t have quite as much time to think over things. Sometimes that could be a good thing, sometimes it could be bad. We have to get ourselves back and ready to go quickly, so we understand that.”
The Chiefs’ defense can be credited for the bulk of the team’s recent success. While they are middle-of-the-pack against the run, the Chiefs are the best in the league against the pass, and have yet to allow a 300-yard passer this season. That’s not good news for Raiders rookie quarterback Derek Carr, who hasn’t thrown for more than 200 yards in his last three games.
Said Carr, “There’s a lot for every quarterback to get ready for, especially with a talented defense like Kansas City has. It just puts more on your plate and you just knock it out in the time that we do have.”
The Oakland offensive line has done a good job of protecting Carr this season, surrendering only 12 sacks. But it will have to be at its best on Thursday in order to keep the young QB upright; Chiefs linebacker Justin Houston has 12 sacks alone (to lead the NFL) and Kansas City, as a team, is third in the league with 30 sacks on the year.
Said Raiders interim head coach Tony Sparano, “They’ve got a great front – a big, physical bunch of guys. They get after you pretty good.”
The Chiefs’ front seven may also feel like it has something to prove after last week’s game against Seattle. The Chiefs won 24-20, but the front seven surrendered over 200 yards on the ground and failed to contain Russell Wilson in the pocket. It was the converse for Oakland against San Diego in week 11; the defense held its own, surrendering just 13 points, but the offense mustered only six. (Both the Chiefs and Raiders managed to cover last week.)
The fact that this is a rivalry game on a short week means anything can happen. (Take for instance the Cleveland Browns upsetting the Cincinnati Bengals two weeks ago.) Despite the fact that the Raiders’ offense is the worst in the league, Oakland has played the Chargers and Seahawks close recently and will desperately want to put in a good performance at home. Take Oakland and the points (+7.5).