Chiefs, Mahomes face Bengals as betting favorites on Sunday Night Football

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While Patrick Mahomes is making his first NFL start after a loss, his Kansas City Chiefs have a proven track record as both a bounce-back team and a peak performer in prime-time.

The Chiefs, led by their first-year starter at quarterback, are 6-point favorites on the Sunday Night Football odds against the Cincinnati Bengals with a 58-point total at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

Kansas City is coming off a 43-40 loss against the New England Patriots, but it is 10-4 straight-up in its last 14 games after a loss. The Chiefs are 9-3 SU and 10-2 against the spread in their last 12 games at night, whereas the Bengals are 2-8 SU in their last 10 prime-time games.

The Bengals, who are 4-2 SU and ATS this season, have a balanced offense centered around quarterback Andy Dalton that will be going up against a Chiefs defense that is dead last in total defense, allowing the most yards per game. With Kansas City linebacker Justin Houston (hamstring) and free safety Eric Berry (heel) both doubtful for this week, playmakers such as wide receiver A.J. Green and running back Joe Mixon should help Cincinnati, at minimum, do its part to help OVER bettors.

However, the Bengals defense is the fourth-most generous in the league and will need to try to take advantage of a rejigged Chiefs offensive line that has lost two key starters, center Mike Morse and guard Laurent Duvernay-Tardif.

The Bengals won outright in their last road game during Week 4 and are 12-3-1 ATS in their last 16 games on the road according to the OddsShark NFL Database after covering in their most recent road game. Since 2015, Cincinnati is also 1-6 SU and 4-3 ATS as a road underdog of 3.5 to 6.5 points.

The Chiefs, who are 5-1 SU and 6-0 ATS, have been a sight to behold offensively. Mahomes, arguably the league MVP over the first third of the regular season, commands an offense that is first in points scored, fifth in total yards and third in yards per pass. One key to the Chiefs being such a point machine is that they have rarely been stalled by interceptions and sacks, suffering only 10 through six games.

That’s hard to sustain, so bettors will have to decide whether the Chiefs are due for some lapses or whether the Bengals, who may not have outside linebacker Nick Vigil or strong safety Shawn Williams (concussion protocol), will be hard-pressed to force drive-killing mistakes.

Cincinnati is 24th in yards per rush allowed and 11th in yards per pass allowed, but it has had trouble covering outside receivers and running backs. That means there could be some long gains from the Chiefs’ Tyreek Hill and Kareem Hunt. The Chiefs are 8-2 SU and 6-4 ATS in their last 10 home games as a favorite of 3.5 to 6.5 points.

The total has gone OVER in five of the Bengals’ last seven games, with an average combined score of 55.71. The total has gone UNDER in six of the Chiefs’ last seven games at home, with an average combined score of 43.43.

For more odds information, betting picks and a breakdown of this week’s top sports betting news check out the OddsShark podcast with Jon Campbell and Andrew Avery. Subscribe on iTunes or Spotify or listen to it at OddsShark.libsyn.com.

Ex-jockey Valenzuela pleads guilty to domestic violence

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VISTA, Calif. (AP) Famed former jockey Patrick Valenzuela has pleaded guilty to misdemeanor domestic violence for slapping his girlfriend at a Southern California restaurant.

The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that the seven-time Breeders Cup winner entered the plea earlier this week, was fined nearly $900 and ordered to take domestic violence recovery classes.

Prosecutors say Valenzuela slapped his girlfriend last month for hugging a bartender at a Carlsbad restaurant.

Valenzuela told the Union-Tribune by phone Friday that he is “very saddened” by the situation and added: “I will continue to strive to be the best person I can be.”

Valenzuela had more than 4,300 winning races, including the 1989 Kentucky Derby and Preakness. He’s struggled with drug and alcohol abuse and lost his California racing license. He last raced in 2016.

CEO Derek Bouchard-Hall to leave USA Cycling at year’s end

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) Derek Bouchard-Hall is resigning as chief executive of USA Cycling at the end of the year and less three years after getting the job.

The chairman of USA Cycling’s board of directors, Bob Stapleton, will help run the organization while a replacement is found. Stapleton said Friday the search has already begun.

Bouchard-Hall plans to take over an undisclosed company with close ties to USA Cycling.

Bouchard-Hall came from the retail sector of the cycling industry, and was tasked with rebuilding an organization that had fallen into disarray. There was a major schism between USA Cycling’s goals of fostering the sport at the amateur level while also pushing its high-performance program.

Bouchard-Hall wound up overhauling USA Cycling’s entire structure, hiring a wave of new coaches and administrators to push forward its world championship and Olympic teams.