Los Angeles Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs: 1/3/21 NFL Picks and Prediction
Photo by Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Kansas City Chiefs (14-1) vs Los Angeles Chargers (6-9)
Game Info: Sunday, January 3, 2021 at 4:25 pm (Arrowhead Stadium)
Betting Odds: Kansas City Chiefs +3.5 -- Over/Under: 44 Click Here for the Latest Odds
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The Los Angeles Chargers will travel to Arrowhead Stadium to take on the Kansas City Chiefs this Sunday afternoon in NFL action.
The Los Angels Charges won their 3rd straight game and improved to 6-9 on the season after defeating the Denver Broncos, 19-16, this past Sunday. Los Angeles allowed Denver to fight back from a 16-3 4th quarter deficit to tie it up late, however, the Chargers were able to secure the victory after a game-winning 37-yard FG by Michael Badgley with just :41 seconds left in the game. Los Angeles was outgained by Denver by a 396-316 margin, however, won the turnover battle by a 2-0 margin in the victory. Leading the way for the Chargers was QB Justin Herbert who completed 21 of 33 passes for 253 yards & 1 TD.
On the season, Los Angeles is averaging 23.1 ppg on 393.0 total yards per game (283.1 passing yds/g; 109.9 rushing yds/g). Offensively, Los Angeles has been led by QB Justin Herbert who has completed 66.3% of his passes for 4,034 yards (304.2 passing yds/g), 28 TD, & 10 INT. The top receiving threats for the Chargers have been Keenan Allen (100 rec, 992 yards, 8 TD), Mike Williams (42 rec, 648 yards, 4 TD), Hunter Henry (60 rec, 613 yards, 4 TD), & Jalen Guyton (28 rec, 511 yards, 3 TD). Leading the way for the Chargers backfield has been the trio of Austin Ekeler (109 att, 512 yards, TD; 48 rec, 370 yards, TD), Joshua Kelley (111 att, 354 yards, 2 TD), and Kalen Ballage (75 att, 254 yards, 2 TD).
Defensively, Los Angeles is allowing their opponents to average 27.0 ppg on 357.5 total yards per game (233.1 passing yds/g; 124.4 rushing yds/g).
The Kansas City Chiefs won their 10th straight game and improved to 14-1 on the season after defeating the Atlanta Falcons, 17-14, this past Sunday. Kansas City had a surprisingly difficult time getting their offense rolling against the Falcons, however, took a late lead on a 25-yard TD reception by Demarcus Roninson and hung on late after the Falcons Younghoe Koo missed a game-tying 39-yd FG with just :14 seconds left in the game. Leading the way for the Chiefs was TE Travis Kelce who had 7 receptions for 98 yards & 1 TD.
On the season, Kansas City is averaging 30.1 ppg on 435.7 total yards per game (319.1 passing yds/g; 116.5 rushing yds/g). Offensively, Kansas City has been led by QB Patrick Mahomes who has completed 66.3% of his passes for 4,740 yards (336.5 passing yds/g), 38 TD, & 6 INT. The top receiving threats for the Chiefs have been Travis Kelce (105 rec, 1,416 yards, 11 TD), Tyreek Hill (87 rec, 1,276 yards, 15 TD), Mecole Hardman (39 rec, 535 yards, 4 TD), & Sammy Watkins (37 rec, 421 yards, 2 TD). Leading the way for the Chiefs backfield has been Clyde Edwards-Helaire who had 803 yards & 4 TD on 181 carries while also hauling in 36 receptions for 297 yards & 1 TD. Edward-Helaire missed last weeks game due to ankle injury and had his time split between Darrel Williams & Le’Veon Bell.
Defensively, Kansas City is allowing their opponents to average 21.6 ppg on 365.7 total yards per game (244.4 passing yds/g; 121.3 rushing yds/g).
The Chargers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a ATS win, however, are just 3-7-1 ATS in their last 11 games on grass. The Chiefs are 12-5-1 ATS in their last 18 games vs. AFC opponents, however, are just 1-4 ATS in their last 5 home games.
Kansas City has already clinched the top-seed in the AFC and at this point, you have to imagine that the majority of their star players will be sitting in this one. The line has yet to be released, however, as I still expect the Charges to get a few points even if Kansas City sits their starts, my initial thoughts is to take the Chargers who should have plenty of success generating offense behind Justin Herbert & Austin Ekeler. Check back later for my official pick once the line is released. Good Luck!
Update (12/30) - With the expectation of many of the best players for KC sitting out, it's not surprising to see the Chargers favored in this one. I'm keeping with my initial thoughts from earlier this week and going to roll with Los Angeles to cover this spread. Good Luck!