If you like looking at the confused look on Denver Broncos head coach Vance Joseph’s face, then tune in Sunday, Dec. 30 as it’s the last time you will see him on the sideline as the team’s head coch. The Broncos are a big home underdog against a Chargers team prepping for the playoffs. Los Angeles will likely be traveling next week as the AFC’s No. 1 wild card team. But a Chargers win combined with a Kansas City loss at home to Oakland would earn the Chargers the AFC West title and the No. 1 seed and a first round bye in the AFC playoffs. There’s a bit to play for, but there’s also an element that’s out of Los Angeles’s hands.

NFL WEEK 17 FOOTBALL BETTING
Los Angeles Chargers (11-4) at Denver Broncos (6-9)
Sunday, December 30th – Broncos Stadium at Mile High – 4:25pm ET
Odds: Chargers -6.5 (41.5)

Where do you begin with Denver and their clueless coach, who has guided the Broncos to back-to-back losing seasons for the first time since 1972. Joseph will be fired next week after losing three straight games to San Francisco, Cleveland and Oakland, all as losing teams. Off the embarrassing performance Monday night at Oakland, the Bronco’s return home on a short week with the players looking forward to the offseason. It’s most difficult to recommend any bet on the Denver Broncos and their lame duck head coach.

That is not the case for the Chargers, will want to play well following last week’s loss to the Ravens and be improving heading into the playoffs. The Chargers fiery and competitive quarterback Philip Rivers had a sub-par game last week, but he’ll bounce back against the Broncos, who he torched for 401 passing yards in their Week 11 match-up. That 23-22 mis-managed late loss to the Broncos is proving costly now with the AFC West division and No. 1 seed at stake. Rivers has passed for 4,132 yards and 31 touchdowns, and combined with a top-10 defense, the Chargers should get their redemption.

While it’s not optimal to be laying big points on the road for a team playing with need, note that the Chargers won at both Pittsburgh and Kansas City in December. The Chargers also won at Seattle and buried losing teams on the road at Buffalo, Cleveland and Oakland, all by double-digits.

Lay it if you play it, and tease the Chargers if you like.

Week 17 NFL Pick – LA Chargers -6.5


Fairway Jay is a professional handicapper based out of Las Vegas. He focuses primarily on the four majors along with college football and college basketball. You can follow him on Twitter @FairwayJay.