Our Cincinnati Bengals vs. Kansas City Chiefs prediction takes a look at the Conference Championship matchup that features a rematch of last year’s AFC Championship Game. Let’s dive into the current NFL betting odds, key storylines to watch, and make a prediction for the game. Note that all odds are from DraftKings Sportsbook as of Monday, Jan. 23.
Bengals vs. Chiefs Odds
Chiefs -115, Bengals -105
Bengals vs. Chiefs Prediction
There were several people that questioned the spread going into last week’s matchup between Buffalo and Cincinnati. Yes, the game was in Buffalo, but the Bills being favored by as much as they were over the red-hot Bengals was a bit puzzling.
Even those same people, though, couldn’t have predicted the absolute trouncing that occurred. Cincinnati was unquestionably the better team on both sides of the ball, and it resulted in a dominant 27-10 victory for them on the road.
That result sets up a rematch of last year’s AFC Championship Game with the Bengals and the Chiefs, where Cincinnati emerged victorious with a 27-24 overtime victory. While the Chiefs have been a dominant team all year long, they’ve now encountered a bit of a hiccup, and the Bengals may be even better than they were last year.
The key storyline for this game will center around the QBs. Joe Burrow has a 3-0 record against Kansas City throughout his young career, including the regular season and playoffs, and he should be able to extend that to 4-0 if Patrick Mahomes is less than 100%.
The star Kansas City quarterback is dealing with a high ankle sprain that he sustained in their victory over Jacksonville last week, and his mobility should suffer a great deal as a result. While Mahomes intends to be out there and leading the offense, the Chiefs will have to adjust their game plan if No. 15 isn’t able to extend plays as easily as he normally does.
There’s no denying that Mahomes can sit back in the pocket and carve up any defense in the NFL, but the magic happens when the play breaks down, and he’s able to play off-script. In a game where he’s likely to be significantly hampered by an ankle injury, Cincinnati may not have to worry about that aspect as much.
There are certainly other aspects of this game that are important to discuss, and that could have an impact on the final outcome. But all eyes will be on Mahomes and Burrow heading into this one.
Will Burrow continue to rise to the occasion in the big moments? Can Ja’Marr Chase put up another monstrous performance on this defense like he did last January?
On the other side, will Mahomes be able to even be 75% of his normal self? If so, Kansas City still has a strong chance to win this game and advance to the Super Bowl. If not, the Bengals may just have too good of a roster to overcome.
Bengals vs. Chiefs Score Prediction
Bengals 24, Chiefs 23