Back in early October, the San Diego Chargers throttled the New York Jets by 31 points to move into first place in the AFC West over Denver.
At the time, the Chargers appeared to be the biggest challengers to the division supremacy held by Denver.
The Chargers win over the Jets was its fifth consecutive cover against the spread to start their 2014 season.
However, odds have a way of changing. Since beating New York, San Diego has not covered the spread in six consecutive games.
The Chargers have however, won three of those six games outright to move to 7-4 and are tied for the second wildcard in the AFC and a game behind Denver.
However, with five games left in the regular season the focus moves to if the Chargers will be able to hold onto that spot. San Diego faces Baltimore, New England, Denver, San Francisco and Kansas City and all have winning records.
Four of San Diego’s losses of six-point spreads were as favorites and in the next five games, the Chargers are not expected to be favorites in any games. Next week, San Diego is a 4-5 point road dog at Baltimore.
The good news is that San Diego has thrived when an underdog the past two seasons with a mark of 11-5-1 ATS.
San Diego has 8 outright upset wins during that 17-game stretch as well and 5 victories outright as 3.5-point or more underdogs.
San Diego has some appealing attributes as an underdog. The offense is good at playing keep away as it has the No. 6 time of possession in the league. The Chargers are good at the kicking game with Mike Scifres their punter having the ability to flip the field.
However, the running game for San Diego has not been producing and quarterback Philip Rivers is being sacked too often.
In addition, the defense for San Diego has allowed four touchdowns or more in its past three games on the road.
If San Diego reaches the postseason after this stretch of five games, they will definitely be playoff ready and will have earned those who play the underdog, some extra holiday cash as well.
Trends for the Week
Dallas is 7-3 SU and 6-4 ATS since 2004 on Thanksgiving.
Detroit during the same period since 2004 on Thanksgiving is 1-9 SU and 2-8 ATS.
Chicago is 2-6 SU and 4-4 ATS since 1978 on Thanksgiving.
Pittsburgh is 6-1 SU and 4-3 ATS coming off a bye during the regular season under coach Mike Tomlin.
Atlanta is 5-7 SU and 6-6 ATS the past two seasons in the Georgia Dome.