KANSAS CITY, MO - NOVEMBER 27: Quarterback Kyle Orton of the Kansas City Chiefs watches from the sidelines during the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on November 27, 2011 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
The Chiefs, currently on a four game skid and fresh off a tough loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, will head to venerable Soldier Field for a non-conference matchup with the Chicago Bears. The Bears are coming home after suffering a 25-20 defeat at the hands of the Oakland Raiders. In the bunched-up NFC playoff race, a win against the Chiefs is just about a "must" for the Bears.
For backers of the Chiefs who were getting the 10.5 or 11 points against the Steelers, congrats! But even with the performance of the Chiefs' defense and the strong probability that Kyle Orton will be starting, will the boys in Vegas make this one a tight matchup? Or will they give the banged-up (not like the Chiefs, but still missing possibly their most important player) Bears the edge here on a home field that they are 5-1 at this season? Let's find out that and more in this week's installment of The Opening Line.
The Chiefs and Bears have only faced off ten times in the long history of both teams, with the Bears holding a 6-4 advantage. The last meeting was in 2007, in which the Chiefs were defeated 20-10, behind a punt return TD by Devin Hester. The Chiefs are only 1-4 at Soldier Field, with the one win coming in 1990.
This week the folks out in Vegas have given the big edge to the Bears as they opened them as 8 point favorites. Currently the 8 points can still be had on the Strip, but online offshore the numbers are mostly 8.5 and 9 and the total varies between 36.5 and 37. Clearly a defensive battle is expected here by these numbers, but with these two teams and the current state they both are in, who knows what will take place. I would think the total may go up a notch if and when Orton is officially named the starter for the game. Having watched the Bears this week, I can say without bias that this is a game the Chiefs (even the recent Chiefs) can win. QB Caleb Hanie is no Jay Cutler, and neutralizing Matt Forte and Marion Barber will be the task of the day. Like I said though, who knows what will take place.Let's take a look at some trends surrounding this matchup.
- KANSAS CITY is 6-2 ATS as an underdog this year.
- KANSAS CITY is 1-14 SU and 5-10 ATS in their last 15 as a road underdog of 7.5 to 10 points.
- KANSAS CITY is 7-3 ATS over the last three seasons in nonconference games.
- KANSAS CITY is 10-5 ATS over the last three seasons coming off two or more losses in a row.
- CHICAGO is 4-2 ATS at home this season.
- CHICAGO is 14-2 SU and 10-5-1 ATS against teams with a losing record over the last three seasons.
- CHICAGO is 16-5 ATS in their last 21 games vs. the AFC West.
- CHICAGO is 4-1 ATS as a favorite this year.
Well, as we head into Week 13 of the regular season, the Chiefs are faced with another tough task and it won't get easier after this one. Hopefully we will see a defensive performance like the one we saw last night, and hopefully the offense can muster at least one (hopefully many more) TD to keep the pressure off of the defense. Either way it should be an interesting week here at AP if the stories and fanposts today are any indication. No matter what though, let's get ready for a tough one this week and hope we can come away with a big road win. For now though, this has been yet another edition of The Opening Line. Have a great night and enjoy Monday Night Football.