The Kansas City Chiefs defied the odds by routing the Patriots in the 2017/2018 season opener. ‘Routing’ is a strong word, but the Chiefs mounted a 21-0 run in the fourth quarter to beat the defending champions. Oddsmakers had the Patriots winning by a 9-point spread, but the underdog managed to come out victorious on this occasion. It is likely that there were quite a few bettors who were not pleased with the game’s outcome, particularly if they wagering boldly at one of the US friendly sites offering NFL betting lines.
New England kicked things off with a touchdown on the first drive of the season. QB Tom Brady, now 40 years old, led a 9-play 73-yd drive to put the first points on the board. When the Chiefs received the ball, fans were left disappointed with rookie RB Kareem Hunt turning the ball over in his first rush of his NFL career. By the end of the night, fans were praising the young player’s name with his 148 rushing yards, 98 receiving yards and 3 touchdowns. The Chiefs running back situation looked to be in dire straights when starting RB Spencer Ware went out with an injury in the preseason, but the Chiefs Draft pick showed he his ready to compete at the top level.
All other parts of the Chiefs offense looked to be rolling. QB Alex Smith had 368 passing yards and 4 touchdowns (incredible fantasy numbers) and showed a winning mentality that will come in handy down the stretch. WR Tyreek Hill had 7 receptions for 133 receiving yards, including a 75-yd TD reception. TE Travis Kelce had the same positive performance and even played a down as QB. The trick play resulted in him rushing for a first down.
Meanwhile, while the Patriots may have lost, they showed they have the tools to remain at the top. New RB Mike Gillislee had 3 rushing touchdowns on his debut game with the Patriots. He looks like he will be a solid replacement for LaGarrette Blount. The Patriots are without star WR Julian Edelman after he tore his ACL, but they have a deep receiving corps with Chris Logan, Danny Amendola, Brandin Cooks and Rob Gronkowski.
They say that defense wins championships, and the Chiefs defense deserves some credit after this game. They contained Brady to 16 complete passes out of 36 attempts and 0 touchdowns. Their 3-man rush strategy appeared to work, at least towards the end of the game, as the pressure kept Brady from slinging passes to his receivers downfield. The Chiefs defense also kept Cooks in check throughout the game, limiting his involvement, and kept Gronk to 2 catches for 33 yards.
From a betting standpoint, this game proves that anything can happen as is evidenced by the numerous USA online sportsbooks that had odds favoring the Patriots. It is also proof that even the industry’s most trusted sportsbooks can get it wrong. The Patriots are still undoubtedly one of the best teams in the league, but the Chiefs exposed some of their flaws. The Chiefs proved themselves to analysts as serious contenders, so bettors will keep them in mind from this point onward. Any team that puts up 40 points against the Patriots is worth watching.