Indianpolis Colts @ Kansas City Chiefs: Ebron could hold the key in huge clash

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NFL nut Kyle Robins (@AhhYeahKyleYeah) shares his expert opinion on the best bets available from Saturday night's play-off encounter from Kansas City.

Indianapolis Colts @ Kansas City Chiefs | Saturday 12th January 2019, 21:35| Sky Sports

Just like last week, the Colts (on the road again) kick off this weekend’s Playoff action, in what looks set to be an absolute ‘slobberknocker’ of a contest.

In a battle of two offensive powerhouses, the Sensation and MVP favourite that is Patrick Mahomes squares off against a resurgent Andrew Luck. Whilst the Colts rank 5th in scoring on the year, totalling 433 points, the Chiefs were well and truly out in front, putting up an astonishing 565 points, with Mahomes tossing a quite incredible 50 touchdowns.

After starting the season 9-1, the Chiefs had a rather mediocre last quarter of the season, finishing 3-3, including loses to the Rams & Seahawks, as well as a home loss to the Chargers. Now that will certainly give the Colts some confidence, who had quite a dissimilar start to the season to the Chiefs. It’s fair to say there wasn’t much optimism in Indianapolis after their 1-5 start, but the defence improved vastly, and Andrew Luck went on an absolute tear from week 7 onwards, putting up a 9-1 record from then on out, putting up plenty of points along the way.

One factor I took into consideration for this weekend, is Indianapolis’s improving defence, after a near dominant display in Houston against Deshaun Watson, holding them to just 7 points. They did however, give up close to 330 total yards. Now of course, they will be facing a different type of monster in Kansas City this Saturday night. Mahomes completely dominated throughout the regular season, but it certainly will be interesting to see how the second year quarterback handles the pressure of the playoffs. (Almost reminds me of what I wrote about Trubisky and the Bears last weekend).

The one flaw for the Chiefs, has and always will be their defence, who give up a lorry-load of yardage, allowing an average of close to 406 yards per game. Add that to the fact they rank 28th against opposing quarterbacks, 31st against running backs & 23rd against wide outs, Andrew Luck will certainly be chomping at the bit.

The area of interest with the Colts for me however, comes at the Tight End position. Kansas City allowed the most fantasy points on the year to opposing tight ends, and it’s fair to say Indianapolis has one of the more dominant players in that position this season. After catching 14 touchdown passes through the regular season, Colts Tight End Eric Ebron has been the go to man in the endzone for Andrew Luck this term. With touchdowns in each of the past two weeks, I’ll be looking for Ebron to once again get into the endzone and exploit this Chiefs defence. The 5/4 being offered with William Hill is certainly worth taking.

Now, some rather interesting stats come to fruition with my next area of attack, and they’re not pretty viewing if you’re Patrick Mahomes, and he’ll be looking to prove the record books wrong. Since the league expansion back in 2002, 43 quarterbacks have made playoff debuts facing off against more experienced players in that position. During that time, these first time starters hold a record of just 11-31-1 (Wins-Loss-Ties) against the spread. What’s even more daunting for Mahomes is that those with home field advantage are just 6-20 over the past 17 years, and 3-16 when being a home favourite (Just like the Chiefs are).
You don’t have to look much further than last weekend to back these statistics up, with Deshaun Watson, Lamar Jackson & Mitchell Trubisky all coming up short when being home field favourites against the spread. Given all of that, coupled with the Colts 10-1 record since week 7, the Chiefs +4.5 at Evens with Bet365 is hugely attractive.

One more quick intriguing bet comes in the form of a SkyBet Request-A-Bet. With Mahomes going over 300+ passing yards on 10 occasions through the regular season, and Andrew Luck not far behind with 7 300+ yard passing games, given how I expect this game to plan out, with two such high powered offenses. The 7/4 for both quarterbacks to throw for 300+ yards looks like a tasty side bet.

Best Bets

Indianpolis Colts @ Kansas City Chiefs – Indianpolis Colts +4.5 (Evens Bet365)

Indianpolis Colts @ Kansas City Chiefs – Eric Ebron Anytime Touchdown Scorer (5/4 William Hill)

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