Los Angeles Chargers @ Kansas City Chiefs Matchup Preview - September 15th, 2022

Editor

Thursday Night Football will showcase a matchup between the Los Angeles Chargers (0-0) and Kansas City Chiefs (0-0). Oddsmakers peg the Chiefs as the big favorite with an implied win probablity of 65%, leaving the Chargers with a 35% chance to record a win. The current spread is the Chiefs -4.0 with a Game Total of 54.0.

Kansas City's primary disadvantage has been their run defense, which has allowed a monstrous 4.87 yards per attempt on the ground this year, sliding them into the #4 spot among the league's worst. When teams struggle defending the run, they often bring an extra defender up near the line of scrimmage. The Chiefs have elected not to do much of this, however, stacking the box the #10-least of any team in football -- just 13.8% of the time. Chiefs defensive ends are perhaps most responsible for their dismal run defense this year, given that they grade out as the #6-worst unit in the NFL. When it comes to their offense, the Chiefs check in at #8 in football when it comes to total yards per game. Their passing game has compiled 284 yards per game (#9 in football). Their run game has ranked #13 with 4.36 yards per attempt on the ground.

Los Angeles's biggest weakness has been their run defense, ranking #29 in the league while allowing 4.87 yards per game on the ground. Perhaps part of their struggle has been because they haven't stacked the box the way teams often do to try and plug up their run game issues. They've brought up a safety or extra defender just 13.8% of the time this year, #10-least of any team in football. The Chargers defensive ends have played a big part in their inability to stop the run, ranking #6-worst in the NFL by this measure. In terms of their offense, the Chargers have ranked #8 in the league in total yards per game. They've passed for 284 yards per game (#9 in football). On the ground they've ranked #13 with 4.36 yards per carry.

Los Angeles Chargers Insights

  • THE BLITZ projects this game to have the 5th-highest volume of plays run out of all the games this week at 128.4 plays, accounting for the tendencies of each team and game dynamics.

  • Austin Ekeler has accumulated a whopping 9.0 air yards per game since the start of last season: 98th percentile among running backs.

  • THE BLITZ projects Austin Ekeler to accumulate 0.26 receiving TDs in this week's game, on average, ranking him in the 99th percentile among RBs.

Kansas City Chiefs Insights

  • The Kansas City Chiefs have played in the 2nd-most "bad weather" (rain, snow, or 15+ mph wind) games in the NFL since the start of last season, which ought to mean higher pass volume, lower running volume, and improved offense effectiveness when facing better conditions in this game.

  • The Kansas City Chiefs cornerbacks profile as the 5th-best unit in the league since the start of last season in pass coverage.

  • The Kansas City Chiefs pass defense has been vulnerable when opposing running backs have gotten into space, yielding an average of 7.81 yards-after-the-catch since the start of last season: the 9th-most in football.

Betting Trends

  • The Kansas City Chiefs have scored first in 13 of their last 16 games (+8.20 Units / 30% ROI)

  • The Los Angeles Chargers have hit the Game Total Over in 7 of their last 9 games (+4.80 Units / 48% ROI)

  • Justin Herbert has hit the TD Passes Over in 11 of his last 17 games (+4.75 Units / 18% ROI)