NFL Top 3: AFC teams surpassing preseason win totals
There may be seven weeks left in the NFL season, but a handful AFC teams are already close to matching the win totals set for them by sportsbooks in the offseason. And one of them - you probably know which - has already beaten its predicted victory count.
Here are three AFC teams that have either surpassed or are closing in on their predicted win tallies (odds courtesy LVH):
Kansas City Chiefs (9-0, O/U: 7)
A .500 season would have been enough for the retooled Chiefs to exceed expectations. Instead, Kansas City has sent shockwaves through the football world by opening the season with nine consecutive victories behind a punishing defense, All Pro-caliber rushing from Jamaal Charles and sensational quarterback play by Alex Smith. The Chiefs have played their fair share of tight games during the streak - including one-point wins over Dallas and Houston - and will be in tough with a remaining schedule that includes two games against the 8-1 Denver Broncos.
New York Jets (5-5; O/U: 6)
Oddsmakers didn't show much faith in the always controversial Jets, particularly with a quarterback battle brewing between incumbent Mark Sanchez and rookie Geno Smith. Sanchez suffered a season-ending shoulder injury in the preseason and Smith has excelled in the starting role, keeping New York in most games while the defense continues to shine. A wild-card spot isn't out of the question for the Jets, who have played the hardest stretch of their schedule and have only one more game remaining against a team above .500.
Cleveland Browns (4-6; O/U: 6)
The win total actually looked generous after the Browns traded starting running back and former third overall pick Trent Richardson early in the season. But a funny thing happened on the way to the bottom of the NFL standings: the move seemed to galvanize Cleveland, which has gone an inexplicable 4-3 since the blockbuster deal. The Browns' schedule is littered with difficult games - a Week 14 tilt in New England among them - but Cleveland should challenge its preseason win total shortly.