The LA Chargers will wrap up the season on the road in Week 18 against a Denver Broncos team that did not have the kind of season it was expecting. Russell Wilson has not lived up to the expectations and Nathaniel Hackett was fired after a blowout loss to the LA Rams.
Before the season, it was expected that this matchup would have some sort of heavy playoff implications on the line. Both the Chargers and Broncos were playoff hopefuls and this game could have decided which team got in and which missed the mark.
Instead, the only playoff implication that this game has is the Chargers' playoff seeding. If they win this game then they will secure the fifth seed and play the winner of the Tennessee Titans and Jacksonville Jaguars game on Saturday night.
Vegas knows that the Chargers are the only team that is really playing for something but the betting odds don't really show that.
Chargers vs Broncos odds Week 18:
Despite the Chargers being the far better team record-wise while also being the only team that is actually playing something, they are not that big of favorites over the Broncos. Los Angeles is just a three-point favorite over Denver, making the team a -172 moneyline favorite. The Broncos are a +144 moneyline underdog.
The point total for this game has been placed at 40 points, so it does not seem like Vegas expects these two teams to score many points. The last time these two teams squared off they scored 35 combined points and took an overtime period to do it.
Chargers vs Broncos prediction Week 18:
If the Chargers were playing for a spot in the playoffs I would actually feel worse about this game. The Broncos would have more of a reason to play spoiler to try and keep their divisional rival out of the fold. But with playoff seeding just on the line, the desire to play spoiler will not be as high.
That being said, Denver definitely wants to end the season on a high note, especially considering the team does not have its own first-round pick in 2023. They won't be tanking for this game, that is for certain.
Los Angeles is still the more talented football team and the Bolts are going to be looking to get momentum heading into the playoffs. With something to actually play for, this seems like the easiest pick that I have made all season (which makes it a bit scary).
I am going with Chargers -3 and under 40 with a final score of Chargers 26, Broncos 10.
Betting odds update periodically and are subject to change after time of publication.