That was all that separated the Buffalo Bills from a trip to last season’s AFC title game. But it proved to be too much time to give Patrick Mahomes, who completed two passes to set up Harrison Butker’s tying 49-yard field goal as time expired en route to Kansas City’s epic 42-36 overtime win.
The Bills have waited nine months for the rematch at Arrowhead Stadium. Mahomes has never been a home underdog. Until now.
Buffalo is a 2½-point favorite, and the total is 54 for the matchup of the NFL’s two highest-scoring teams. The Chiefs lead the league in scoring with 31.8 points per game, and the Bills are second (30.4 ppg).
But this one will be decided by the better defense, and it clearly belongs to Buffalo. The Bills are tied with the 49ers for the No. 1 scoring defense, allowing only 12.2 ppg, and are second in total defense and fourth in passing defense.
Kansas City is in the bottom 10 of the league in scoring defense (25.0 ppg allowed) and 24th in passing defense.
The Chiefs are coming off a short week after Monday night’s narrow 30-29 win over the Raiders and have failed to cover their first two home games this season.
I’ll back Josh Allen and Buffalo to gain a measure of revenge in this one.
Four more plays (home team in CAPS):
Jaguars (+2½) over COLTS: Jacksonville has lost two straight after a promising 2-1 start. But it has inexplicably owned the series against Indianapolis, covering the last six meetings and 13 of 15 (13-1-1 ATS). The Jaguars crushed the Colts 24-0 on Sept. 18 and are tied for fourth in the league in scoring defense (16.0 ppga). Indianapolis, coming off its ugly 12-9 overtime win at Denver, is last in the league in scoring (13.8 ppg).
Patriots (+2½) over BROWNS: This is the first time Bill Belichick has been an underdog to Cleveland since he was fired as Browns coach after the 1995 season. Belichick is 8-2 straight-up and 7-3 against the spread vs. Cleveland, including a 45-7 rout last year. New England should be able to run the ball on the Browns’ No. 28 rush defense. The Patriots, coming off a 29-0 win over the Lions, have the superior defense and are facing former New England quarterback Jacoby Brissett. A win would tie Belichick with George Halas for second on the NFL’s career win list, including playoffs, at 324.
Ravens (-5½) over GIANTS: The Ravens (3-2) could easily be 5-0 after blowing a 21-point lead in a loss to the Dolphins and a 17-point lead in a loss to the Bills. Baltimore has won and covered both road games this season, and Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson is 17-7-2 ATS on the road. Jackson also is 12-0 vs. NFC teams. New York isn’t as good as its 4-1 record suggests, and it’s coming off a trip to London.
Vikings (-3) over DOLPHINS: Minnesota is 4-1, but this is more of a play against Skylar Thompson, a rookie quarterback making his first NFL start for Miami. Thompson replaced Teddy Bridgewater early in last week’s 40-17 loss at the Jets, and he completed 19 of 33 passes for 166 yards, threw an interception and lost a fumble. The Vikings have the edge on both sides of the ball and should be able to take advantage of Thompson’s inexperience and the Dolphins’ No. 29 scoring defense (26.2 ppga).
Last week: 3-2
Contact reporter Todd Dewey at [email protected] Follow @tdewey33 on Twitter.