NFL 2014 Week 8 Thursday Night Pick & Analysis – FootballThursday, October 23, 2014 16:51
Picks and analysis for the Thursday night game of Week 8 of the 2014 NFL season.
2014 NFL Week 8 Thursday Night Football
SAN DIEGO CHARGERS @ DENVER BRONCOS – 8.5 51.5 [U]
I keep telling myself when I run into NFL contests like this Thursday Nighter to “follow your instincts.”
My gut said take the Chargers, the 8.5 and the Under on the theory that division games are usually much closer than inter or intra conference games.
Usually I just pick the team I’m feelin’ it for, then I actually do some real work—stats research and ATS analysis.
In the AFC West, these two teams have been trying to stomp one another for about 55 years. In 2014, the Broncs and Bolts are both playing as impressive defense as contemporary rules allow.
The Chargers boast the fourth best defense in the NFL, while Denver comes in at number six. The Wild Horses also put the NFL’s fourth best offense on the field, ranking seven slots better than the Bolts.
In this Thursday Nighter, we have the great Manning coming off an historical performance last Sunday Night. Normally a Sunday Night participant doesn’t play on Thursday because the short week would be even shorter, but both contests were at Mile High. The Chargers were looking even better given the intangibles suggested a perfect storm for a Denver let down.
It wasn’t until I checked the Bolt’s schedule and saw they have beaten one quality team—Seattle at home—that I started leaning toward Denver. San Diego lost heartbreakers to the Cards and Chiefs and had their way with the Jets, Jags and Bills—not overly impressive.
Meanwhile, the Broncs shellacked the 49ers, spanked KC, and man-handled the Cardinals—all quality units.
Manning is so good with so many weapons; I thought maybe I should ignore my instincts. The long-term trends show the Bolts with an awful straight up winning percentage at Mile High—and the altitude is a major advantage.
Then I saw these trends:
- The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Denver’s last 6 games when playing San Diego
- Denver is 6-11-4 ATS in its last 21 games when playing San Diego
- Denver is 1-7-3 ATS in its last 11 games when playing at home against San Diego
- Denver is 2-4 SU in its last 6 games when playing at home against San Diego
- The total has gone UNDER in 5 of San Diego’s last 6 games on the road
- San Diego is 5-2 SU in its last 7 games on the road
- The total has gone UNDER in 4 of San Diego’s last 6 games when playing Denver
Top to bottom, Denver has the better talent, a genuine home field advantage and Peyton. The Broncos will get their “W.”
The Chargers will make it a nail biter Under the number.
Broncos 27 Chargers 24
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