When the Patriots travel to play the Chiefs in Kansas City on Monday night (7:05 p.m. ET, CBS), the game will be held a day and nearly three hours later than originally scheduled. With Cam Newton and a handful of other players testing positive for COVID-19, the NFL postponed the contest, now making it the penultimate matchup of Week 4.
Newton will not play and try to stay hot as the Patriots’ first starting quarterback post Tom Brady. Instead, long-time Brady backup Brian Hoyer will fill in, ahead of second-year QB Jarrett Stidham. There are no QB questions on the other side, with the Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes looking for more MVP fun in 2020.
The Chiefs (3-0) will push toward remaining the top team in the AFC as reigning Super Bowl champions. The Patriots (2-1), without Newton, risk falling two games behind the Bills (4-0) in the AFC East race.
Here’s everything to know about betting on Patriots vs. Chiefs in Week 4, including updated odds, trends and our prediction for the Monday night football game.
Betting odds for Patriots vs. Chiefs
The Chiefs had been short of touchdown favorites until Newton tested positive and the Patriots turned to Hoyer to start at quarterback in a crucial early AFC matchup. The line went up above 10 points quickly and along with it, the point total was lowered to adjust for no Newton.
Patriots vs. Chiefs all-time series
The Chiefs hold a 19-16-3 advantage. Kansas City won at New England, 23-16, in December 2019 on the way to winning Super Bowl 54. Before that, the Patriots beat the Chiefs 37-31 in overtime in the 2018 AFC championship game, on the way to winning Super Bowl 53.
Overall the Patriots have won 8 of the past 12 meetings going back 20 years. This will be the rubber match for Andy Reid and Bill Belichick, who each have coached his team to 3 wins in the past 6 matchups.
Three trends to know
— 60 percent of spread bettors still like the Chiefs, even with a more significant number in their favor.
— 100 percent of over/under bettors are leaning toward the over with the number going down, thinking the Chiefs will make up for no Newton on the other side.
— The Chiefs are 2-1 against the spread this season. They went 14-5 ATS last season. The Patriots are 2-1 against the spread this season. They went 12-5 ATS last season.
Three things to watch
Tyreek Hill or Travis Kelce?
The Patriots’ defense likes to take away one explosive element of an offense. They likely will focus on containing Hill, Mahomes’ go-to big-play wide receiver, so they can bend without breaking. Their cornerbacks have struggled away from Stephon Gilmore. There’s a chance Hill gets a double-team while Gilmore is put on Kelce, after he was effective erasing the Raiders’ athletic Darren Waller in Week 3.
Hoyer, dinking and dunking
Hoyer has been in the Patriots’ system for a good chunk of his career. He knows the important of getting the ball out of his hands quickly. He will lean hard on the power running game led by Sony Michel, but expect him to use Julian Edelman and James White in the passing game much like Brady did. With no rushing element like Newton, Hoyer must use his smarts and trust his playmakers to do damage after the catch.
Clyde Edwards-Heiaire and Mecole Hardman
The Chiefs’ rookie running back Edwards-Helaire should be busy in the feature role and this might be a game to get him going more as a receiver. Hardman, if Hill is under wraps, could have a big impact making more big plays away from Hill as a second-year clone Hill. The Chiefs are staying ahead of defenses by having Mahomes spread the ball around to all his weapons and these two youngsters, with their speed and quickness, could burn Belichick’s focus on Hill and Kelce.
Stats that matter
141.0 and 4.9. The Chiefs are averaging 141 yards rushing per game at 4.9 yards per carry, thanks to their offenisve line and Edwards-Helaire. The Patriots have been the most effective rushing offense in the NFL, averaging 178 yards per game, but they were very reliant on Newton for providing that punch.
The Chiefs would be fine running the ball often if the Patriots take away the deep passing game. The Patriots won’t be getting the same running with Hoyer in there for Newton.
Patriots vs. Chiefs prediction
The Patriots will need to get creative in the game without Newton. Hoyer has played well when needed in the past, but he’s facing a very tough Chiefs’ pass defense that’s handled Deshaun Watson and Lamar Jackson early. Still, the Patriots will run the ball well for a while to stay in the game by keeping Mahomes off the field and also tighten the screws defensively in the red zone. The Chiefs will win more comfortably without Newton to challenge, but it’s hard to expect hitting both the over and the cover.
Chiefs 30, Patriots 20
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