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Bettors Guide: Chiefs-Rams game could be off the charts

It's not just the controversy caused by the late move of the game from Estadio Azteca in Mexico City to the Los Angeles Coliseum that makes Monday night's Kansas City Chiefs at Rams game so intriguing.

It truly is a unique matchup. It's only the fifth time since the 1970 pro football merger that two teams with one or fewer losses have met this late in the season. The last time was in 2013 when Denver (8-1) met Kansas City (9-0).

What's more, a lot of offensive fireworks are forecast. The over-and-under for the game has been set at 63, the highest as long as such statistics have been recorded by Las Vegas experts.
But there's even more fun in store in the Week 11 slate. First-place teams Houston of the AFC South and the Redskins of the NFC East will meet in Landover, Md. as will Minnesota and Chicago, who will battle for the NFC North lead when they meet Sunday night at Soldier Field.

Seven other NFL teams with 5-4 or 4-5 records, the so-called "Bubble" teams, will be in action against each other in what could turn out to be elimination games.

After a week when 19 of 28 NFL starting quarterbacks achieved a passer rating of 100 or higher — even Matt Barkley of the Bills — it should be more than the usual amount of fun.

A capsule look at Week 11:

Game of the Week

Chiefs (9-1) at Rams (9-1)
TV: ESPN, Monday, 8:15 p.m.
The line: Rams -3 1/2.
ATS: Chiefs 7-3; Rams 5-5.
Over/under: 63 1/2.
Times over/under: Chiefs 6/4; Rams 7/2/1.
The scoop: Chiefs are 3-1 as underdogs. Rams have been favored every game, but did not cover in last two as home favorites. L.A. had trouble at home against division rival Seattle last week while the Chiefs sort of went through the motions in a home win over Arizona. ... Todd Gurley of the Rams leads the league rushing stats with 988 yards and 13 TDs. Kareem Hunt of the Chiefs has run for 754 and seven scores. ... KC phenom Patrick Mahomes already has broken the franchise record with 31 TD passes and leads the league with 3,150 yards in a season where passing stats have gone through the roof. Tyreek Hill (9), tight end Travis Kelce (6), Hunt (6) and ex Bill and Ram Sammy Watkins (3) are some of his favorite targets. Rams QB Jared Goff, meanwhile, lost one of his top WRs when Cooper Kupp went on IR this week. He still has ex-Bill Robert Woods (55 receptions) and Brandin Cooks (34). It will be interesting to see how Mahomes deals with serious pressure from NFL sacks leader Aaron Donald (12.5).
Outlook: This game deserves a faster track at the Coliseum than the questionable surface at high altitude in the Mexico capital. The scoring could go into the 80s. Chiefs, 45-42.

Top attractions

Eagles (4-5) at Saints (8-1)
Kickoff: 4:25 p.m.
The line: Saints -9.
ATS: Eagles 3-6; Saints 7-2.
Over/under: 56.
Times over/under: Eagles 4/4/1; Saints 6/3.
The scoop: Almost a must win for Philadelphia which seemed to be coming on before home loss to division rival Dallas last Sunday night. Eagles have underachieved offensively and defensively compared to their Super Bowl season. ... Eagles are an underdog for only second time this season (0-1). Saints have covered their last seven games after starting 0-2 as favorites.
Outlook: Saints seem due for a letdown, but we thought that last week on road against Bengals and were dead wrong. New Orleans, 27-20.

Vikings (5-3-1) at Bears (6-3)
TV: NBC, 8:20 p.m.
The line: Bears -2 1/2.
ATS: Vikings 5-3-1; Bears 6-3.
Over/under: 45.
Times over/under: Vikings 4/5; Bears 5/3/1.
The scoop: After so-so game against Bills, Chicago QB Mitchell Trubisky was a revelation in rout of erratic Lions last week with 148.6 rating and four TDs responsible for last week in win over Lions. Vikings 2-1 as underdog covering at Green Bay and Philadelphia and losing at L.A. Rams. Bye for Vikings came, happily, before their most important game of the year as regards divisional race.
Outlook: Minnesota has won last three in division rivalry but by only three at Soldier Field last year. Bears, with Khalil Mack at home, turn the tables. Chicago, 24-17.

Texans (6-3) at Redskins (6-3)
Kickoff: 1 p.m.
The line: Texans -3.
ATS: Texans 3-3-2; Redskins 6-3.
Over/under: 42.
Times over/under: Texans 3/5; Redskins 3/6.
The scoop: Redskins 4-1 last five games as favorite. Houston on six-game winning streak after escaping with win over Bills. ... Texans coming off bye while Redskins won at Tampa Bay (16-3) despite yielding 501 yards.
Outlook: Redskins a home underdog? Houston, 24-23.

Bengals (5-4) at Ravens (4-5)
Kickoff: 1 p.m.
The line: OFF
ATS: Bengals 4-5; Ravens 4-5
Over/under: OFF
Times over/under: Bengals 6/3; Ravens 3/6.
The scoop: Here's two of those "bubble" teams. Bengals, who are banged up, just fired their defensive coordinator and may have cashed it in and face Baltimore team that either was overrated or is under performing. Rival coaches Marvin Lewis and John Harbaugh have been facing each other since 2008. ... Ravens have not covered last three games as favorite. Ravens coming off bye week. Bengals were routed at home by Saints.
Outlook: Ravens could turn to rookie Lamar Jackson at QB. That's what kept game off the board for most of week. Ravens, 33-20.

Titans (5-4) at Colts (4-5)
Kickoff: 1 p.m.
The line: Colts -2.
ATS: Titans 5-3-1; Colts 4-4-1.
Over/under: 49.
Times over/under: Titans 3/5; Colts 5/2/2.
The scoop: Two "bubble" teams on upswing. Titans routed Patriots, 34-10, at home last week. Colts held on to defeat Jaguars. Colts have won last three straight up since 42-34 loss at the Jets, which now looks like a truly bad loss. Colts are averaging 33.3 ppg last six games. ... Titans opened eyes with decisive win over Patriots.
Outlook: It's looking more and more like Bills passing over Frank Reich twice for coaching job was one of huge series of Buffalo mistakes in this century. Colts, 31-21.
Best of the rest

Panthers (6-3) at Lions (3-6)
Kickoff: 1 p.m.
The line: Panthers -3 1/2.
ATS: Panthers 5-4; Lions 4-4-1.
Over/under: 51.
Times over/under: Panthers 6/3; Lions 6/3.
The scoop: Panthers came to gun fight at Pittsburgh last week with water pistol. They just were not ready and lost by 31 points. Lions look like a team that is disillusioned and has quit on coach Matt Patricia. QB Matthew Stafford has been whacked 16 times in last two games or ever since trade of WR Golden Tate to Eagles.
Outlook: Should be fun duel between exciting RBs, Christian McCaffrey and Lions rookie Kerryon Johnson. Carolina, 27-24.

Steelers (6-2-1) at Jaguars (3-6)
Kickoff: 1 p.m.
The line: Steelers -6.
ATS: Steelers 6-3; Jaguars 3-5-1.
Over/under: 46 1/2.
Times over/under: Steelers 5/4; Jaguars 4/3/2.
The scoop: Jaguars have not covered last five games. You can't even call Doug Marrone's team a "bubble" team any more. Biggest disappointment has been defense and absence of RB Leonard Fournette, who did return finally for 109 scrimmage yards last week. It's rematch of AFC Divisional playoff last season at Heinz Field won by Jax, 45-42.
Outlook: Think Mike Tomlin isn't reminding his team about embarrassing defensive performance in playoffs? Steelers better be ready for Jags' best effort. Looking for a little big of a Pitt letdown on the road but a 34-31 win.

Cowboys (4-5) at Falcons (4-5)
Kickoff: 1 p.m.
The line: Falcons -3 1/2.
ATS: Cowboys 3-5-1; Falcons 6-3.
Over/under: 48
Times over/under: Cowboys 4/5; Falcons 6/3.
The scoop: They're playing to stay alive in race for second NFC wild card. Loser might as well fuhget about it. ... Falcons were coming on before they were handled by the Browns, of all people, last week. Dallas looked dead, then won at Phila. Go figure.
Outlook: Two desperate teams. Atlanta, 27-24.

Buccaneers (3-6) at Giants (2-7)
Kickoff: 1 p.m.
The line: Giants -2.
ATS: Buccaneers 3-6; Giants 4-5.
Over/under: 52.
Times over/under: Bucs 8/1; Giants 5/4.
The scoop: Ryan Fitzpatrick and Bucs were first team in NFL history to gain 500-plus yards and score three points or less in 16-3 loss at Washington. ... Giants won at Santa Clara over 49ers with Eli Manning's most complete game this season (three TDs, no INTs).
Outlook: Giants shut out the Gotham noise and take advantage of leaky TBay defense. New York, 30-16.

Broncos (3-6) at Chargers (7-2)
Kickoff: 4:05 p.m.
The line: Chargers -7.
ATS: Broncos 4-4-1; Chargers 5-4.
Over/under: 46 1/2.
Times over/under: Broncos 4/5; Chargers 5/4.
The scoop: Denver had bye last week while Chargers had a routine win at Oakland. A Chargers win would position them to move into tie for AFC West lead if Chiefs should lose Monday Nighter at L.A. Rams.
Outlook: Broncos, coming off two-point loss to Texans and bye week, aren't that bad. Chargers, 21-17.
Dog of the Day

Raiders (1-8) at Cardinals (2-7)
Kickoff: 4:05 p.m.
The line: Cardinals -5.
ATS: Raiders 1-7-1; Cardinals 5-3-1.
Over/under: 40 1/2.
Times over/under: Raiders 3/6; Cardinals 3/6.
The scoop: First time Cardinals have been favored all season. Wouldn't Jon Gruden love to take back decision to leave TV booth to coach Oakland?
Outlook: Cardinals allowed rookie QB Josh Rosen to get sacked five times at KC last week. Cardinals 27-20.
Last week: Counting the Thursday night game, five favorites covered the betting spread, seven did not and the Colts-Jaguars ended as a push. Six games went over the number, seven under.
Last week's results: 6-7 straight up; 5-7-1 against the spread.
Season's record: 69-53-3 straight up; 59-61-5 ATS.#

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