NFL 2018 Season - Week 14
 

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GAME REPORTS

 
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More Likely
by Dennis Ranahan

Games in the National Football League are usually decided by the better team. If they have a bad day, the underdog wins. If they have a good day, the underdog gets blown out.

The Kansas City Chiefs are a good team, some would say the best. This week, they host the Arizona Cardinals, clearly a bad team.

The Chiefs have won as many games as any team in the league, eight, and are at home against one of the worst teams. The Cardinals are a squad that has picked up only two victories, both over the undermanned San Francisco 49ers.

Against good teams, squads like the Los Angeles Rams and Minnesota Vikings, the Cardinals have been beaten by double-digits. Thirty-four to nothing against the Rams in second week action, and 27-17 versus the Vikings four weeks ago. They also lost 45-10 at home against the Denver Broncos.

Trust me, the Cardinals qualify as a bad team.

You probably know the Chiefs highlights ever more than the Cardinal lowlights. Second-year quarterback Patrick Mahomes is on pace to win the league Most Valuable Player Award. He has set records as often as a six-year-old splashes in a swimming pool.

With no doubt about who the good team is and who that bad team is when the Cardinals visit Arrowhead Stadium this week, we can now take a closer look at the better team and see if they are poised for a performance above or below their talent level. Always keeping in mind, that the Chiefs will decide this game.

Next week, they meet the Los Angeles Rams in a battle between two teams that enter this weekend with only one loss each. If we went through a litany of how good the Rams are, we’d never get back to the point of this article and the game this week in Kansas City. But, suffice it to say, if you were picking an offense and defense from all 32 teams, going with both the Rams offense and defense is a choice with a worthy argument.

The Rams are just that good, and are like a flame on the horizon that the Chiefs may already be distracted by during the week they need to prepare for the pitiful Cardinals.

Everyone knows the Cardinals have no chance. The Chiefs could win this in their sleep. That may be the factor that leads to the Chiefs undoing, and no coach’s pep talk or warning is going to allow the Kansas City players anything but overconfidence headed into this game.

Whether the Chiefs play bad or not is not the only question. What if even a solid performance could likely end in a point spread loss? Available in some spots now, and more than likely on game day, is 17 points on the spread. The Chiefs are more than 17 points better than the Cardinals man-for-man, but is the more talented team motivationally pitched towards a big or off effort?

If they play perfect, control the game, only give the Cardinals a touchdown or two, they may still not cover this spread. This Chiefs team is good enough to win without being in a position to expect a blowout. Off their win last week on the road against the Cleveland Browns, and with the Rams on the schedule next week, the Chiefs would like to coast into this one and just get the job done.

Then again, if they are surprised attacked by a suddenly effective Cardinals team, this game could go all the way to a surprise straight-up victory for the visitors.

The point spread win is much more likely than that.

Qoxhi Picks: Arizona Cardinals (+17) over Kansas City Chiefs