Tonight we get two Monday night games as the Chiefs (4-1) take on the Bills (4-1) at 5 EST, and the Cardinals (3-2) take on the Cowboys (2-3) at 8 EST.
Prime Time Picks is 6-4, and I will be previewing and predicting who will cover the spread for both games tonight.
Game 1: Chiefs (-5.5) vs Bills (+205) O/U 55 – All lines via DraftKings
Both the Chiefs and Bills are in need of a bounce back win, as they are both coming off their first losses of the season. The Chiefs lost at home to the Raiders 40-32, and the Bills got walloped by the Titans 42-16.
Mahomes vs Bills Passing Defense
Patrick Mahomes is cruising so far this season, as he has thrown 13 TD’s and just one interception, and has a rating of 107.3 through five games. He will be facing a Bills passing defense that has been shaky to say the least. In the last four weeks, they have given up 9 TD’s and picked up just one interception. In each of those games, the opposing QB posted a rating of over 100. I expect Mahomes to have a bounce back game tonight and put up some points. The Chiefs are putting up 29.8 points per game, and I think their high-flying offense will have no problem moving the ball down the field and finding the end zone.
Bills Need to Run the Ball
After an incredible first four games of the season, Josh Allen came back down to Earth on Tuesday against the Titans, as he completed just 63% of his passes and threw two interceptions for a rating of 77.6. Tonight he will be facing a Chiefs defense that has been respectable, as last week was the first time they gave up over 20 points in a game. Through five games, the Chiefs are giving up the sixth-fewest passing yards per game. However, they are more susceptible to the run, allowing the fourth-most rushing yards per game in the entire NFL. I think the Bills need to focus on the ground game in this one. Even though the Bills don’t have a RB with a yards-per-carry average above 4.0, Devin Singletary and T.J. Yeldon should get a lot of opportunities tonight.
Scheduling Advantage for the Chiefs
The Bills have had a challenging week, as their game last week against the Titans was pushed to Tuesday because of Tennessee’s COVID-19 outbreak. The Bills got smacked in that game, and now host the reigning Super Bowl champs. The Chiefs last played on Sunday, and have had two extra days to prepare. That is a dangerous combination for the Bills. Hosting Mahomes and the Chiefs on a short week, while Andy Reid and his staff get two extra days to prepare? Expect the Chiefs to have a solid game plan tonight.
It’s hard to bet against the Chiefs in this one. Mahomes and the Chiefs are still a Super Bowl favorite, and after getting beat in their own building last week, I think they will bounce back strong. In addition, they have had two more days than the Bills to prepare for this one, and Andy Reid will have his guys ready. After throwing his first interception of the season last week, I expect Patrick Mahomes to bounce back in a big way and put up a lot of points. The Bills passing defense has been weak, and the Chiefs just have so many weapons that it puts them in a really good spot tonight. The Bills defense has given up the fifth-most points in the AFC this season, with opponents scoring 28 or more three times, and none of their first five opponents have an offense quite like the Chiefs. I’ll take KC to win and cover.
Game 2: Cardinals (+100) vs Cowboys (-1) O/U 55 – All lines via DraftKings
The Andy Dalton Era Begins
Cowboys QB Dak Prescott went down with a gruesome ankle injury last week, as it out for the remainder of the season. Insert Andy Dalton, who went 9/11 for 111 yards as Dak’s replacement last week. Dalton is a seasoned vet, and has a career rating of 87.6. He is certainly a step down from Prescott, but I think the situation is still a solid one. Dalton might be the best back-up QB in the league, as he’s a three-time Pro Bowler. It’s also about as good of a situation as you could ask for in terms of weapons with Ezekiel Elliott, CeeDee Lamb, Amari Cooper, and Michael Gallup at his disposal. That’s a group of weapons that he never had in Cincinnati. In addition, the Cowboys offensive line is better than he had in Cincinnati. They will keep him protected, and with a RB to hand the ball off to like Elliott, and electric WR’s on the outside, the Cowboys are still in a strong position to win with Dalton at the helm.
Cardinals QB Kyler Murray is one of the most electric QB’s in the league, as he can make big plays with both his arm and his legs. This season, he has thrown 8 TD’s, and has found the end zone on the ground five times. However, he has thrown 6 interceptions and posts a rating of just 90.9. The good news is that Murray now has DeAndre Hopkins to throw to, and the Cowboys defense hasn’t exactly been stellar. The Cowboys are giving up 36 points per game, which is the most in the league. I expect Murray and the Cardinals offense to have a lot of success tonight.
The Cardinals come in with the better record, as they are 3-2 and the Cowboys are 2-3, but that isn’t exactly telling of their seasons. The Cardinals three wins have come against the Jets, Washington, and a very banged-up 49ers team. Those teams have a combined record of 4-14. The Cowboys will be their toughest opponent thus far, so it will be a true test of just how good this Arizona team is.
There will be lots of points in this game. Both offenses have performed well thus far, and both defense have not. The Cowboys have allowed the most points per game in the league, so Kyler Murray and DeAndre Hopkins have to be really excited to play tonight. That being said, I think the Cowboys get it done and come away with the win. Even without Dak at QB, the situation with Dalton is still pretty solid. The plethora of weapons at his disposal is certainly comforting for Cowboys fans, and playing at home helps as well. It will be a high-scoring shootout, but I’ll take the Cowboys to come out on top.
Cowboys -1 (ML)
* I’m going ML just because it’s essentially a pick ’em
Title Photo: Ticketmaster