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NFL Playoffs: Patriots Open as 5-point Favorites Over the Chiefs

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The New England Patriots, losers of four of their past six games, might have finished their season in the complete opposite fashion as the Kansas City Chiefs, winners of their past eleven, but oddsmakers don't care.

The Patriots have opened up as 5-point home favorites over the Chiefs.

Kansas City dispatched the Houston Texans 30-0 in the wild card rounds, but that wasn't decisive enough to make them the road favorites against #2 seed New England.

While the Chiefs potentially lost key wide receiver Jeremy Maclin to a knee injury, the Patriots are expecting the following players to be healthier and better utilized than they have been over the final few weeks of the season:

Quarterback Tom Brady should recover from his ankle injury.

Running back Steven Jackson should be better integrated into the offense.

Wide receivers Julian Edelman (foot), Danny Amendola (knee), and Brandon LaFell (foot) should be healthier.

Tight ends Rob Gronkowski (knee) and Scott Chandler (knee) should also be better involved.

Linemen Sebastian Vollmer (ankle) and Josh Kline (shoulder) should be back in form.

Defensive ends Chandler Jones (toe/abdomen) and Rob Ninkovich (shin) should be ready to play.

Linebacker Dont'a Hightower (knee) should be well rested.

Cornerback Justin Coleman (wrist) could return to help in the slot.

Safeties Patrick Chung (hip) and Devin McCourty (ankle) will solidify the defense.

Keep in mind that these are key starters that have either missed time or have been severely hampered by injury.

Do you think 5-points is right for this game?