After a weekend full of unbelievable games, the AFC Championship game is set with the Cincinnati Bengals taking on the Kansas City Chiefs. The Bengals shocked the Chiefs in Week 17 with a 34-31 victory in Cincinnati on a last-second field goal. Will history repeat, or will the Chiefs return to their third straight Super Bowl?
Football odds for the AFC Championship game moneyline currently have the Chiefs as a -350 favorite. Let’s break down the matchup.
Here are the details you need to know about this game:
- Who: Bengals at Chiefs
- When: Sunday, Jan. 30th
- Time: 3:00 P.M. EST
- Venue: Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, MO
Joe Burrow’s Time to Shine
Joe Burrow has proven this year that he’s one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL. In just two years, Burrow has helped to transform the Bengals from a 2-14 team to a Super Bowl contender.
His chemistry with former LSU teammate Ja’Marr Chase is a significant factor in the team’s success. This year, the tandem has connected for 13 TDs, leading the Bengals to a 10-7 regular-season record and their first AFC Championship game since 1988. Burrow finished the season with a league-leading 70.4 completion percentage to go with 4,611 yards and 34 touchdowns.
Can the Chiefs Be Stopped?
After Patrick Mahomes drove the field with 13 seconds left to set up a game-tying field goal against the Buffalo Bills last week, it’s fair to ask if the Bengals can stop the Chiefs. The Chiefs have scored 42 points in their past two games. Only two teams have scored 42 points in consecutive playoff games: this year’s Chiefs and then 1990 Buffalo Bills.
The Chiefs have talent at every skill position. They showcased this last Sunday, first with Tyreek Hill’s 64-yard touchdown with 1:13 left in the game to take the lead. When that didn’t turn out to be enough, Mahomes found Travis Kelce and Hill for a combined 46 yards in two plays and 10 seconds to set up the game-tying field goal with three seconds left.
The Bengals are 26th in passing yards allowed per game (248.3). It’s difficult to imagine Cincinnati stopping the Chiefs from moving the ball through the air.
AFC Championship Game Moneyline: Chiefs (-350)
The Chiefs have now won eight straight home games, with their last loss being against the Buffalo Bills in early October. Kansas City has scored a ridiculous 84 points in two home playoff games.
These two teams are familiar with each other, having just played in Cincinnati in Week 17. Then Bengals came out on top in that one to eliminate any hopes Kansas City had about obtaining the first-round bye. In that game, Joe Burrow shredded the Chiefs’ secondary to the tune of 446 yards and four touchdowns and will look for a repeat performance this Sunday.
The point spread is high at -7.5, and the Bengals have now covered the spread six games in a row. Cincinnati has also been adept in the second half of games, winning the half outright in eight of their last nine games.
For these reasons, along with Cincinnati’s ability to score (27.1 points per game), I think the Bengals can cover the spread. But I believe the Chiefs will be too much for Cincinnati to win outright. I’m taking the Chiefs on the moneyline.
Make Your Super Bowl Picks
Will we see Patrick Mahomes and Jimmy Garoppolo return to the Super Bowl once again for a rematch from two years ago, or will Joe Burrow and Matthew Stafford make their inaugural appearances?
Head to BetMGM’s online sports betting site to make your picks for the AFC Championship game moneyline. Sign up for an account today for a risk-free initial bet of up to $1,000.