The Cincinnati Bengals and Kansas City Chiefs are both coming off of exciting wins in the Divisional Round of the playoffs. Cincinnati won on a last-second field goal, while Kansas City won with a touchdown on their first drive in overtime. Below are the NFL odds and my pick and prediction for the Bengals vs. Chiefs game in the AFC Championship.
Cincinnati Bengals vs. Kansas City Chiefs pick, prediction | Conference Championship
- Spread: Chiefs -7 (Odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook)
- Moneyline: Bengals +245, Chiefs -310
- Over/Under: 54.5
Can Cincinnati’s defense slow down Kansas City’s offense?
Cincinnati’s offense found plenty of success in their Week 17 matchup against the Chiefs, scoring 34 points. Their defense wasn’t as successful, although it didn’t matter in the grand scheme of things.
Kansas City’s offense has been playing at an elite level over their last seven games. Over that span, they’re averaging 37.3 points per game. They’re 6-1 in that span (their only loss came to the Bengals). The 31 points they posted in that Cincy game were the second-lowest total over that span.
Although Cincinnati squeaked out a win that week, they haven’t consistently been able to find that offensive success. They’ve scored more than 31 points in only six of their 19 games this season. The Bengals are only averaging 22.5 points per game in the playoffs, as well.
The Chiefs feature one of the best offenses in the NFL, which they proved against the Buffalo Bills last week. The Bengals will need to hold them to fewer points than their last outing to pick up a win this weekend.
Bengals vs. Chiefs betting trends
Let’s look beyond the recency effect of their 2021 regular-season matchup for betting leans.
The Bengals have found plenty of success against the spread (ATS) this season. They own a 12-7 ATS record, covering by an average of 4.3 points per game. The Bengals have also covered the spread in six consecutive games, including four consecutive games as underdogs.
The Chiefs haven’t been quite as successful, as they enter this game with a 10-9 ATS record. They’re covering the spread by an average of 1.3 points per game. Kansas City’s also been on fire, though, covering in eight of their last 10 games. They have yet to be the underdog in a game this season.
These teams are opposites in terms of the game total. The Bengals have found the under in 57.9% of their games, while the Chiefs have hit the over in 63.2% of their games. Kansas City’s hit the over in seven consecutive games as well.
Bengals vs. Chiefs prediction
It’s tough to know how to feel about this game. Joe Burrow is a player of destiny, which he proved throughout his time at LSU and early in his NFL career. Kansas City features a significantly better roster and has home-field advantage, though. On top of that, the Bengals already own a win over the Chiefs, and it’s extremely difficult to beat great teams multiple times in a year.
Kansas City can never be counted out, which they showed with a last-second field goal against Buffalo last week. They feature one of the best offenses in the NFL, and it’s unlikely Cincinnati will be able to completely slow them down.
If that’s the case, the Bengals will need to be able to keep up, similar to the way they did earlier in the season. Although I don’t believe it’s out of the question, this feels like Kansas City’s game to win. Still, I’m willing to take the points with the dog, as a touchdown is too much.
Bengals vs. Chiefs Prediction: Chiefs 31, Bengals 27