NFL expert picks, Week 6: Chiefs are still favorites to beat the Bills

HOUSTON, TEXAS - JANUARY 04: Josh Allen #17 of the Buffalo Bills looks on prior to the AFC Wild Card Playoff game against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium on January 04, 2020 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TEXAS - JANUARY 04: Josh Allen #17 of the Buffalo Bills looks on prior to the AFC Wild Card Playoff game against the Houston Texans at NRG Stadium on January 04, 2020 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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NFL experts have the Kansas City Chiefs as slight favorites over the Buffalo Bills.

The Kansas City Chiefs let the Las Vegas Raiders get yards on the ground and through the air, which ended in a disappointing loss in Week 5. The Buffalo Bills got smashed by the Tennessee Titans, who spent previous weeks away from their facility due to a COVID-19 outbreak. After disappointing losses for two teams with Super Bowl dreams, the Bills and Chiefs now face off in Week 6.

The Chiefs were favored even before adding Le’Veon Bell to the mix (who actually won’t play due to having to sit out for COVID safety reasons). That being said, the margins are much closer than when the Chiefs took on the Raiders a week ago, in which the Chiefs were picked by 99% of experts to win the game. Josh Allen vs Patrick Mahomes for the first time will be extremely interesting.

Here is how experts predict the game will shake out:

ESPN:

The ESPN Panel is bullish on the Chiefs. Only Seth Wickersham chose to go with the Buffalo Bills this week. Wickersham is more liberal with his wild picks, however. Every week, it seems like he is the most willing to pick an underdog. With an intriguing matchup that could be close, he generally takes the team that is not favored. ESPN is, however, a believer in the Chiefs.

CBS: 

The CBS panel was a little bit closer. Kansas City favorite Pete Prisco was one of the two that picked Buffalo to beat Kansas City this week. The other was Dave Richard, their CBS’s fantasy football expert. With that in mind, the majority of the eight-manned panel still chose Mahomes and the Chiefs over Allen and the Bills. Of that panel, Will Brinson offered an educated guess as to what the game would look like in his weekly column:

"With this game now on Monday, the biggest winner here is the Chiefs. Before the schedule change, the Chiefs were going to have to play on Sunday in Week 5, then fly to Buffalo on just three full days of rest for a Thursday game. Instead, the Chiefs will now be getting SEVEN full days of rest, which means they’re going to have a full week to lick the wounds they sustained in Sunday’s loss to the Raiders. On the other hand, the Bills will be coming into this game after playing on a Tuesday against the Titans.Is it fair that the Chiefs are getting extra rest? I have no idea what’s fair in these corona times, but I do know that I’d much rather be in Kansas City’s situation. Also, if you give Andy Reid a few extra days to cook something up offensively, he almost always takes advantage of it. Not only is the Chiefs coach nearly unbeatable off a bye, but he also has a pretty solid record on “Monday Night Football.” Since being hired by the Chiefs in 2013, Reid is 6-0 vs. AFC teams on Monday night, including 4-0 with Patrick Mahomes.The entire population of Buffalo might simultaneously smash themselves through a folding table if the Bills pull off the upset on Monday evening and as much as I want to see that happen, I’m taking the Chiefs.The pick: Chiefs 30-27 over Bills"

NFL.com

Gregg Rosenthall is one of the best NFL writers out there. Every week he thoughtfully predicts each game. This week, he was buying into the Chiefs. In his piece, he points out just how dominant Kansas City is on offense. (This was written before they had added Le’Veon Bell to the mix). Here is what he had to say:

"Kansas City Chiefs 35, Buffalo Bills 30When Kansas City’s offense has the ball, this game will be a matchup of sides trying to live up to previous glory. The Chiefs are 12th in net yards per attempt after finishing first and second the previous two seasons. The Bills’ defense went from mediocre to Lions status in Nashville, with Matt Milano and Tre’Davious White out of the lineup. K.C.’s offense seems like the far easier fix. Both Patrick Mahomes and Josh Allen are constantly trying to balance how much they should improvise versus how much they should stick to structure, and while Mahomes is a little out of whack currently, he’s accustomed to being in shootouts. I’m curious if Bills coach Sean McDermott is ready to embrace playing every week in the 30-plus-point range, because that’s the type of Bills team he’s coaching"

FiveThirtyEight:

As we do every week, we took a look at the math nerds over at FiveThirtyEight, who determine the likelihood of a team winning a matchup each week. While they are likely more invested in tracking the polling numbers from Florida and the impact of two individual town halls on voters three weeks before election day, they still find time to calculate the winning percentages for each team. This week, they give Kansas City a slight edge, giving them a 60% of coming away with a victory. That means that they give the Bills a 40% chance of avoiding back-to-back losses.

While these are far from the closest numbers of the week, the Chiefs are usually favored by much more. This is no easy game for Kansas City.

Overview:

According to NFL Pick Watch, there is a whopping 87% of experts taking the Chiefs. While this seems wider than it should, there are factors that may be contributing to this. Tre’Davious Whte could be out this week, which seems like an unfortunate time for an injury. Andy Reid has very rarely lost two games in a row with Kansas City. The Bills also looked depleted in their loss to the Titans last week.

The media gives Kansas City a slight edge. It should be an excellent game and could begin a new era of rivalry between two talented AFC quarterbacks. One thing is for certain, we are in for a treat on Monday night.

Next. The Bills defense is more bark than bite in 2020. dark