We have an unexpected Monday Night Football doubleheader in Week 4 after the New England Patriots and Kansas City Chiefs were pushed back a day. One single positive coronavirus test from Cam Newton postponed the game at Arrowhead Stadium. As long as there aren’t any new positives as of Monday morning, the Patriots and Chiefs will play tonight.
Following the Patriots and Chiefs will be the Green Back Packers and Atlanta Falcons on ESPN. I’m all for having two games on Monday night on a regular basis, or at least more than once in Week 1, so two games in primetime is all good for me.
Unfortunately, though, we aren’t going to have what should have a matchup featuring Cam versus Patrick Mahomes. We are going to have to live with longtime backup Brian Hoyer against Patrick Mahomes. Hoyer has floated around the league primarily as a backup quarterback.
He spent his first three years with the Patriots behind Tom Brady, and then made some starts along the way elsewhere. Hoyer made 13 starts in Cleveland in 2013 and then nine in Houston the following season, which is when he had his best season. Hoyer passed for 19 touchdowns and 7 interceptions with a 91.4 QBR.
In five starts with the Bears the following season, Hoyer threw for 6 touchdowns and no interceptions before getting traded to the 49ers. Hoyer regressed with 4 touchdowns and 4 interceptions, and has only made one start since then. He started one game for the Colts a season ago, along with two assignments off the bench.
It’s no secret that the Patriots will keep things simple and hopefully their defense can steal a win. I don’t know if that’s how you win against the Chiefs, who are coming off an impressive 34-20 blowout win over the Baltimore Ravens on Monday Night Football in Week 3. Let’s take a look at a few props and hopefully come out of Kansas City with a profit. Head below for our free New England Patriots vs. KC Chiefs props picks for October 5, 2020.
The Patriots-Chiefs game will be played Monday, with kickoff at 7:05 PM ET and the game airing on CBS, a source told @AdamSchefter.
Monday’s Falcons-Packers game will be moved back to an 8:50 PM ET kickoff, the source said. pic.twitter.com/1YnqPC7B7d
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 4, 2020
Travis Kelce Receptions
Bill Belichick is known for taking away the best weapon out of an offense. However, it’s a little tougher against a team like the Chiefs when there are so many attractive options for Mahomes to dish it out to. It doesn’t help that Dont’a Hightower and Patrick Chung are not playing this season. The absence of Hightower on the Patriots’ defense has been fairly evident. His presence in the middle of the defense is dearly missed.
The current Patriots’ defense doesn’t really have a lockdown defender to shadow talented tight ends right now. Stephon Gilmore is one of the most talented cornerbacks in the NFL. However, he will be watching speedster Tyreek Hill on Monday night. When Aqib Talib was with the Patriots, he was a master at covering good tight ends. The current defense doesn’t have the luxury of blanketing Travis Kelce with something like that in 2020.
Kelce has predictably been a focal point of the Chiefs’ offense this season. He has hauled in 21 receptions for 227 yards and 2 touchdowns through three games. Kelce has recorded at least 6 receptions in every game, with a season-high of 9 receptions for 90 yards and a touchdown. The Patriots have been adequate against the pass, with 235.3 yards allowed per game for 11th in the NFL. Banking on Kelce to grab more than 5 receptions on Monday night looks like a good bet.
Patrick Mahomes Rushing Yards
Patrick Mahomes was more of a runner in college at Texas Tech against weak defenses in the Big 12. That’s changed in the NFL, as Mahomes still utilizes his feet, but has developed a lot as a passer since then. There are a lot of college quarterbacks who depend too much on their running ability and can’t make an NFL pass.
However, Mahomes can pretty well do it all. He can’t run like Lamar Jackson, but when the pocket is breaking down, Mahomes is more than capable of picking up the necessary yardage. In his last two games, Mahomes has rushed for a total of 80 yards. Against the Chargers, he hit the ground running for 54 yards on 6 attempts, and then 26 yards and a touchdown last week against the Ravens.
It certainly doesn’t have to take a designed run for Mahomes to pick up more than 20 rushing yards. He can do that by scrambling and picking up easy yards when a lane opens up. I am going to take my chances on Mahomes ripping off a couple of decent runs to get this prop OVER the total. It helps that Dont’a Hightower won’t be surveying the field for the Patriots.
Mecole Hardman Receiving Yards
The Chiefs were able to take advantage of a big hole in the Ravens’ defense last week in Baltimore. With slot cornerback Tavon Young out of the game, Mecole Hardman had a nice game with 4 receptions for 81 yards and a touchdown. Hardman is a strong deep threat for Mahomes who tends to have big games because of attention provided elsewhere stopping the likes of Kelce, Hill, and Sammy Watkins. I was going to post this prop last week against the Ravens, but couldn’t find it on BetOnline.
The Ravens lost him in the secondary last week and he struck for a deep connection with Mahomes for a score. Two weeks ago against the Chargers, Hardman didn’t have a major impact, but was still able to collect 2 receptions for 30 yards. Considering how much Mahomes likes to involve everyone in the offense, Hardman to earn more than 21 yards is good value here.
It doesn’t matter who you are, if you’re open Mahomes will deliver the ball. Hardman should be able to find an opening in the secondary at least a couple of times. The 22-year-old still has a lot of room to grow, and he should be able to play a part in the game plan on Monday night. I will take my chances on Hardman gaining more than 21 yards through the air against the Patriots.