2020 AFC West Predictions and Expert NFL Betting Picks
The AFC West is going to be an extremely top-heavy division once again this year with the Kansas City looking to and expecting to defend their Lombardi Trophy, and we see no reason why they can’t do just that. They have Patrick Mahomes under center, and they have Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce ready to put up solid numbers. If anything, the Chiefs offense figures to be better than ever given the fact that they are talking about hunger and motivation for more success.
The Chargers are the only other team in the division that can end the Chiefs’ reign atop the AFC West, but the value on the betting board simply isn’t there. Remember, they let Philip Rivers and Melvin Gordon walk in the offseason, so the turnaround could be their downfall. The AFC West figures to be a very high scoring division based on offensive capabilities and defensive woes (looking at you, Oakland), so if you follow any division closely, make sure it’s this one.
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Kansas City Chiefs
Season Win Total (o11.5 -130)
Super Bowl Odds (+600)
AFC West Win Odds (-350)
It wouldn’t be a “hot take” to say that the Kansas City Chiefs could be the next dynasty in the NFL. I mean, did you see what Patrick Mahomes did last season and the numbers he put up? This year, they return the majority of the roster from their Super Bowl winning team, and the division is there for the taking since the Broncos and Raiders are dumpster fires while the Chargers always find a way to blow it.
Prior to last season, the Chiefs tried to shore up their defense by signing defensive end Frank Clark to a five-year deal, and they also agreed to terms with Tyrann Mathieu on a three-year contract. Both players played a huge role in getting them to the promise land, and so it begs the question if the defensive production can be duplicated. If the defense can step up and be relatively average, the Chiefs will once again run away with the division even if the offense regresses a bit.
Los Angeles Chargers
Season Win Total (o7.5 -130)
Super Bowl Odds (+3000)
AFC West Win Odds (+800)
The Chargers decided to roll the dice and try to sign Tom Brady but failed. Now they are stuck with Tyrod Tayler as the starter. And did you see what he did in Buffalo? Not much. They have Justin Herbert waiting in the wings (drafted 6th overall), but they’ll likely let him sit back and watch and develop slowly. They let Melvin Gordon walk this offseason, trusting Austin Ekeler with the full workload. The defense still has plenty of talent, but we just aren’t sure they are capable of getting to eight wins this season.
Related: AFC East Division Preview
Season Win Total (o7.5 -135)
Super Bowl Odds (+6000)
AFC West Win Odds (+750)
It has been quite the fall from grace for the Broncos, who just four years ago were hoisting the Lombardi Trophy and bidding farewell to Peyton Manning. Nowadays, what I see when I look at the Broncos is a team that has no real direction. They are going to be relying on Drew Lock to lead the way under center and have one or two decent weapons on offense to help him with. Defensively, the team is not as dominant as it has been over the last few seasons, but they play in a division with the Chargers and Raiders, both of whom are going to be bad this year. That could be four wins in the bank, and getting to eight may not be as hard as you’d think.
Season Win Total (o7.5 +100)
Super Bowl Odds (+5500)
AFC West Win Odds (+1000)
When I wrote about the Cleveland Browns, I called them must-see TV. The Oakland Raiders are in the same boat. They are a franchise with no real direction. And even with the return of Jon Gruden last season, the Raiders are still a circus for several reasons. The whole Antonio Brown saga was just the beginning of the turmoil.
The Raiders showed signs of life last season but ultimately collapsed late in the season. They have some good pieces but simply can’t get out of their own way. Now they have to deal with a new stadium and fan base and all the pressures that come with that. This could be a down year for the Raiders, but I do think 8-8 is possible, especially with the Chargers and Broncos expected to struggle.
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