How the pack has shifted behind the Kansas City Chiefs

We’re approaching the halfway point of the National Football League (NFL) regular season and, although the Kansas City Chiefs look comfortable on their perch, there is a battle raging beneath them. But which teams have strengthened their bid for a shot at Super Bowl LVIII and which franchises have fallen away?

Kansas City Chiefs Infallible

David Montgomery plunged a dagger into Kansas City hearts on the opening day of the season when he put Detroit 21-20 up at the Arrowhead Stadium. Nobody saw that coming and the inquest began almost immediately. Had Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs taken their eye off the ball? Hardly. They have been on a near-flawless run since, firmly establishing their position as sports betting favourites to lift the Vince Lombardi Trophy at 4/1. Only the San Francisco 49ers (5/1) and Philadelphia Eagles (11/2) are within touching distance.

It’s hard to see how this Chiefs team could fail to make the Super Bowl. They have all the tools at their disposal to put every team in the league to the sword. Patrick Mahomes has hit the 2,000 passing yards mark already at over 280 yards per game. Who’s been on the end of the majority of those? You guessed it: Travis Kelce. The tight end has over 500 receiving yards to his name. The two have a bit of that Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski about them. It is simply a recipe for success.

Rocky Start for the Buffalo Bills

The Buffalo Bills were many people’s dark horse this year and they came into the season as fourth favourites to win the Super Bowl. However, a tumultuous start to the season has seen them slip further down the odds at 10/1, now also trailing the Dallas Cowboys (9/1) and Miami Dolphins (10/1).

You can expect most Super Bowl winners to finish the regular season with a handful of defeats. Based on the Bills’ opening two months, they would need the second half of their season to be as close to perfect as possible to maintain this trend. It’s not necessarily the early defeats that are cause for concern, but more the teams they have lost to. Nobody envisioned them losing on the opening weekend to the New York Jets, and the recent defeat to the New England Patriots was undoubtedly a day to forget. If anyone can turn Buffalo’s season around, it’s Josh Allen, but things will need to take a positive turn sooner rather than later.

Emergence of the Miami Dolphins

Miami kicked off the season at 25/1 to win the Super Bowl, but a string of impressive performances has seen them climb to 10/1, tied with Buffalo as fifth favourites to go all the way. The Dolphins might be the best value at this stage of the season, with the odds calculator showing a £10 each-way bet could return £170 if Miami win the Super Bowl, or £60 if they lose on the biggest stage.

A couple of defeats have spoiled their perfect start, but there is no shame in losing to the likes of the Eagles and Bills. A couple of off-nights aside, they have put on some attacking masterclasses, none more so than the 70-20 victory over the Denver Broncos at the Hard Rock Stadium. Quarterback Tua Tagovailoa led his side to the most points scored in a regular season NFL game since 1966 when Washington put 72 on the board against the New York Giants. The 25-year-old is a special talent, and if the Dolphins don’t go deep into the playoffs this year, they will no doubt be back with a vengeance in 2024.

All to Play For

While the Kansas City Chiefs were pre-season favourites and remain at the top of the tree, it is far from a one-franchise league. It’s been an intriguing start to the season, with the Eagles, 49ers, Cowboys, and Dolphins all emerging as potential threats to Kansas City’s throne.

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