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Injury to Kansas City Chiefs’ Tight End Travis Kelce Shakes Up Betting Odds
Travis Kelce’s Knee Injury Shakes Up NFL Betting Scene
Kansas City Chiefs’ star tight end, Travis Kelce, suffered a knee injury during Tuesday’s practice session, creating ripples in the NFL betting landscape. The reigning Super Bowl champions are set to kick off the new NFL season in Kansas City against the Detroit Lions on Thursday evening.
Kelce’s Uncertain Status for Week 1
With Kelce currently listed as questionable for the Lions matchup in Week 1 due to his knee injury, the Chiefs face uncertainty in their season opener.
Lions on a Mission
The Detroit Lions, on the other hand, embark on this season with a clear mission — securing their first playoff victory since 1991. Favored to clinch the NFC North, the Lions are determined to claim their first division title in over three decades.
Chiefs Aim for Super Bowl History
The Chiefs find themselves among the NFL’s elite, alongside the Buffalo Bills and Cincinnati Bengals, as top contenders for the conference championship. Beginning the season as the consensus favorites to win back-to-back Super Bowl titles, a feat not achieved in nearly two decades since the 2004 New England Patriots, they are also the favored bet to win the AFC West division title for the eighth consecutive season.
Kelce, a 33-year-old tight end, holds the choice of being the NFL’s premier player in his position and a favorite target for quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Known for his durability, Kelce has missed only four games since 2017, with two of those being inconsequential late-season matches. In 2022, he enjoyed his most outstanding season, amassing 110 receptions, 12 touchdowns in 17 games, and over 1,300 receiving yards, extending his streak of 1,000-yard seasons to seven.
Kelce’s knee hyperextension occurred during a practice session, and he was able to walk off the field unassisted. Head coach Andy Reid provided limited insight into the injury’s severity during a brief chat with reporters, stating, “We’ll just see how he does going forward.” If Kelce misses the season opener against the Lions, he’ll have an additional ten days to recover before the Chiefs face the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 2.
Reid emphasized the team’s philosophy of stepping up when faced with adversity, saying, “The next guy steps in and we roll.”
The Chiefs have alternatives in tight ends Noah Gray and Blake Bell on their roster, while Matt Bushman and Gerrit Price are two options on the practice squad. Gray, a fifth-round pick from Duke in 2021, enters his third season with the Chiefs, contributing 28 receptions, 299 yards, and one touchdown last season. Bell, a journeyman tight end from Oklahoma, is in his second stint with the Chiefs, known more for blocking but having added 19 receptions and one touchdown in his three seasons with the team.
Vegas Oddsmakers Adjust Chiefs’ Line
The Chiefs initially opened as seven-point favorites (-7) against the Lions. However, the point spread shifted to -6.5 over the past week at major sportsbooks in Las Vegas and offshore. Following Kelce’s knee injury, oddsmakers swiftly adjusted the line, reducing it by as much as 1.5 points. Notable Las Vegas establishments, including the Westgate SuperBook and Crica Casino, moved the line in the Chiefs/Lions game from -6.5 to -5. Chris Andrews, head bookmaker at the South Point Casino, further moved the line to -5.5.
As of now, DraftKings lists a -5.5 line for the NFL season opener on Thursday night. Additionally, the points total for the Chiefs/Lions game originally opened at 53.5 over/under. The current total stands at 53 over/under at most Las Vegas shops, except Circa, which moved it to 52.5 over/under. Notably, the Chiefs begin the season without one of their key defensive players, as defensive tackle Chris Jones is holding out due to a contract dispute.