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Chargers at Colts: MNF Preview, Prop Picks, Prediction

Dec 18, 2022; Inglewood, California, USA; Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert (10) and Tennessee Titans linebacker Rashad Weaver (99) during the fourth quarter at SoFi Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Chargers roll into Indianapolis for Monday Night Football knowing a victory clinches a playoff spot.

The Chargers (8-6) are riding a two-game winning streak and face a reeling Colts team coming off an historic 33-point collapse against Minnesota. The Colts (4-9-1) are without star running back Jonathan Taylor for the remainder of the season and are turning to Nick Foles, who will be their third starting quarterback this year.

Indianapolis has lost four consecutive games following an opening win for interim coach Jeff Saturday and has been eliminated from playoff contention.

The Chargers opened as 4.5-point favorites at BetMGM, but the line has moved to 3.0 with the Colts drawing 81 percent of the spread-line action. The 4.0-point line at DraftKings has seen the Chargers backed by 77 percent of the spread bets and 67 percent of the handle.

“Indianapolis was up 33-0 last week in an NFL game,” Chargers coach Brandon Staley said. “That’s very difficult to do. The reason why they were is because they have a lot of good players and they have a lot of good coaches.”

PROP PICKS
Chargers RB Austin Ekeler Anytime TD (+450 at DraftKings): Ekeler has been the most popular prop play at both sportsbooks for good reason. He has 14 total touchdowns on the season, including at least one in nine of his past 11 games. His odds to score Monday night have a slightly smaller payout at BetMGM (+400). The Colts are allowing 123.7 yards per game on the ground and enter the game 25th in the NFL in giving up an average of 24.1 points.

Colts WR Parris Campbell Under 38.5 Receiving Yards (-115 at BetMGM): This has been the third most popular player prop at the sportsbook. Campbell has topped this mark in seven of his 14 games this season but is averaging only 4.3 targets over his past four games. What his role in the passing game is with Foles under center remains to be seen, but he’s fighting for targets behind Michael Pittman along with rookie Alec Pierce.

Over 44.5 Total Points (-100 at BetMGM/DraftKings): The total has been shifting downward all week, opening at 47.5 points at BetMGM, where 57 percent of the bets and 61 percent of the money has backed the Under. The action has been more split at DraftKings with the money 50/50 and the Over drawing 56 percent of the bets. The Chargers enter 21st in total defense and are just below the Colts in points allowed per game at 24.3.

INJURY REPORT
Chargers: S Derwin James (quad) is expected to return after missing the past two games, but DE Joey Bosa (groin) does not appear ready yet. DB Kemon Hall (hamstring) is officially out.

Colts: Taylor (ankle) is out along with CB Kenny Moore II (leg) and TE Kylen Granson (ankle). CB Brandon Facyson (illness) and WR Mike Strachan (concussion) are slated to play.

PREDICTION
Foles is accustomed to the relief role, having guided Philadelphia to a Super Bowl title after replacing an injured Carson Wentz in Week 14 in 2017. He could provide a steadying influence to the Colts’ lackluster offense, but he can’t fix the offensive line or running game woes. The Chargers are peaking at the right time and will be highly motivated to lock up a playoff spot before the New Year. — Chargers 27, Colts 20

–Field Level Media