Check out our best bets in this week’s Fab Five-NFL Edition:
When and where: November 18, 2018, StubHub Center, Carson, CA, 4:05 PM ET
The Los Angeles Chargers will face their second consecutive AFC West opponent in a row on Sunday when they welcome the visiting Denver Broncos. A dominant road victory over the Oakland Raiders in Week 10 marked the sixth consecutive win for the Chargers. Meanwhile, the Broncos have lost their last two games to the Kansas City Chiefs and Houston Texans.
Can Keenum overcome 2018 struggles?
There was hope in Denver that the arrival of a competent veteran quarterback like Case Keenum would finally make up for the pitfalls of a revolving door of Trevor Siemian, Paxton Lynch and Brock Osweiler. Yet, it truly has been more of the same.
Keenum went from leading the Minnesota Vikings to an NFC Championship last season to becoming the proverbial punching bag behind center for the Broncos. There are obviously more problems for the Broncos right now than the quarterback position. Keenum’s nosedive in production can be attributed to poor offensive line play, a lack of consistency from his offensive skilled players and a regressing defense that hasn’t been able to back him up.
— Denver Broncos (@Broncos) November 14, 2018
Some of the blame does fall squarely on Keenum’s shoulders as well. He has already thrown more interceptions this year than he did all last season. His touchdown-to-interception ratio is nearly identical (11-10), and his completion percentage is down from where it was a year ago.
He was able to avoid costly turnovers against the Texans, but the Broncos still failed to come away with a win. His end-game stat-line was 26 completions for 290 passing yards and one touchdown.
Are the Chargers the second-best team in the AFC?
The Chargers have quietly pieced together a 7-2 record in the AFC and currently sit behind the Kansas City Chiefs in the pecking order. After the New England Patriots’ shocking blowout loss to the Tennessee Titans last Sunday, it’s fair to ponder whether the Chargers have entered the team to beat conversation.
The offense is currently clicking on all cylinders with quarterback Philip Rivers throwing to a myriad of talented receivers. Running back Melvin Gordon is also on pace to have his best NFL season yet. He is averaging 5.4 yards per carry with 672 rushing yards and seven touchdowns in only eight games played so far this season.
On the defensive side of the ball, things have held up even in the absence of former NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year Joey Bosa, who continues to work his way back from a foot injury.
we'll just leave this here pic.twitter.com/kfFtblEUq5
— Los Angeles Chargers (@Chargers) November 15, 2018
The defense held the Raiders to only six points on the road in Week 10. Rivers finished with a modest 18 completions for 223 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.
- Chargers are 5-1 ATS against teams with a losing record
- Chargers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games
- Chargers are 6-0 ATS in their last 6 games played in the month of November
- Chargers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games against teams in the AFC
- Broncos are 1-3-1 ATS in their last 5 games after a bye week
- Broncos are 2-11 ATS in their last 13 games after an ATS loss
- Broncos are 0-6 ATS in their last 6 games played in the month of November
- Broncos are 2-6 ATS against teams with a winning record
Updated on Nov 18 at 8:40am EST
Update prepared by our editoral staff
Public Money / Line Movements
Te Sharps appear to be on the side of the Broncos as the Bolts have gotten 66% of the bets, but the line has stayed at -7 all week.
Injury / Weather Report
No Weather Issues Expected
Denver’s Impact Injury Report
LB Brandon Marshall (33 Tackles) is out
Los Angeles’ Impact Injury Report
DB Trevor Williams (23 Tackles, 1 INT) is out.
TE Antonio Gates (141 Yards) and Joey Bosa are questionable.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
The Broncos currently rank in the bottom-half of the league in total yards allowed (364), but more importantly, they rank 26th against the run. That’s music to the ears of a Charger team that already has one of the best running backs in the league.
Gordon should be able to feast on the defensive front for the Broncos on the ground and through the air. The linebackers haven’t been as great in Denver as they have been in previous years, which has opened up vulnerabilities in the run game.
However, Rivers should also be able to hurt the defense with crossing patterns and wheel routes with Gordon coming out of the backfield. One of the true revelations this season was how great Gordon can also be as a receiver. He’s a true multi-dimensional threat and a big problem for any defense he faces. The Broncos offense has struggled all season, and it’s unlikely they’ll magically get it together on the road against one of the best teams in the AFC.
They currently rank 19th in points scored, which sets them up for a long day in attempting to match wits with Los Angeles’ high-powered offense.
Prediction: Los Angeles Chargers (-7)
Full-Game Total Pick
The under is 5-0 in the last five head-to-head meetings between the Broncos and Chargers when playing in Los Angeles. These rivalry games typically never end up being high-scoring affairs, particularly when involving these two teams. The Broncos have obviously regressed defensively, but they still have a means of getting after the quarterback with Von Miller and Bradley Chubb coming off the edge. They won’t win this game, but they should be able to at least keep the score respectable.
Prediction: Under (46.5)