2008 Kansas City Chiefs AFC West Predictions May 27th, 2008
By: NFL Handicapping Staff
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NFL Pro Football Futures Betting – Unlikely Hail to the Chiefs
You can not only get the sports betting odds to win next season’s Super Bowl at BetUS online sportsbook, you can make an online betting wager on the winners in each of the NFL’s eight divisions as well. One of those divisions is the AFC West, where the Kansas City Chiefs hit rock bottom in the second half of the ’07 season en route to a 4-12 record. Are the prospects any better for Kansas City this year? We’ll examine their case today.
First we list gambling odds to win the AFC conference title and AFC West division, as they appear in BetUS Sportsbook:
BetUS NFL Futures Odds
To Win AFC West
San Diego Chargers -300
Denver Broncos +400
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS +550
Oakland Raiders +750
To win the AFC Championship
New England Patriots +175
San Diego Chargers +450
Indianapolis Colts +500
Jacksonville Jaguars +900
Pittsburgh Steelers +1200
Cleveland Browns +1600
Tennessee Titans +2000
Denver Broncos +2000
Cincinnati Bengals +2200
Baltimore Ravens +2500
Houston Texans +3000
Buffalo Bills +4500
New York Jets +6000
Miami Dolphins +6600
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS +6600
Oakland Raiders +6000
Kansas City began the 2007 season with some hope, winning four of its first seven games. But a lackluster 12-10 win over Oakland, achieved just before the bye week, was the last time the Chiefs would taste victory. Nine straight losses ensued, and coach Herm Edwards and general manager Carl Peterson went back to the drawing board.
The Chiefs spent much of last season justifying their selection of former Alabama quarterback Brodie Croyle in the third round of the 2006 draft. In fact, toward this end, they unseated Damon Huard, who had an 11-to-1 TD-INT ratio and ranked 2nd in the NFL in passing efficiency after taking over from the injured Trent Green the year before. Croyle completed 56.6% of his passes for six touchdowns and six interceptions last season, in his first extended playing time. And it seems the “experiment” will continue this season, as Croyle, who has a rocket arm but a tendency to make bad decisions, needs to prove he can be an NFL quarterback. We could say that Kansas City will go about as far as Croyle as able to take it, if it were that simple. But there are a lot of holes on this team.
Almost everyone was in agreement that the Chiefs had a very productive draft. Glenn Dorsey, the defensive tackle from LSU, was not expected to last until the fifth overall pick, yet there he was, and Kansas City grabbed him as a potential anchor of its defensive line for years to come. The renovation project on the offensive line got a boost with the selection of Branden Albert with the 15th overall pick. And Brandon Flowers, a cornerback out of Virginia Tech, was taken on the second round and will have a chance to play instantly, because the secondary lacks talent.
Of course, there was a price to pay for the Chiefs having extra draft picks. For Kansas City, it was their best player on defense, Jared Allen, who led the league in sacks last year but apparently wanted too lucrative a contract. He was dealt to Minnesota for a first-rounder and two third-rounders. And as he leaves, so do any immediate answers in the pass rushing department. Dorsey may help this defensive line defend the run, and get some push from the tackle position, but Tamba Hali will have to be the guy who puts pressure on opposing quarterbacks.
Offensively, Croyle has two outstanding targets to throw to – perennial Pro Bowl tight end Tony Gonzalez and wide receiver Dwayne Bowe, who caught 70 passes as a rookie. Aside from that, however, his selection is limited. Larry Johnson, a workhorse when healthy, missed eight games last year and all of those games were losses. can he make it through an entire season without getting sidelined?
To forecast a Kansas City triumph in the AFC West, a lot of things would have to come together; the development of Brodie Croyle into a very efficient NFL quarterback, the emergence of more receivers in the lineup, a season from Larry Johnson without any injury problems, a legitimate replacement for Jared Allen at defensive end, a stellar rookie season from almost everyone they drafted, and the collapse of San Diego and Denver in the division race. Those things are not likely. But if Croyle takes some giant steps, at lwest Kansas City has some questions answered as the team moves ahead in the rebuilding process.
JAY’S PREDICTION FOR 2008:
Kansas City Chiefs — 5-11, Tie-3rd, AFC West
(+550 to win division, +6600 to win AFC, +12500 to win Super Bowl in the Top Sportsbooks Super Bowl betting odds)
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