NFL Picks AFC Championship Game (2022 regular season)
NFL PICKS (AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME)
BY PROFESSOR MJ
Written Monday January 23rd, 2023 at 10 am Eastern Time (spreads/odds may have changed)
Last week, we had a disappointing 1-3 record with the Divisional Round picks on sides and totals. However, we remained strong with the famous and lucrative NFL player proposition bets with 4 wins and 2 losses. You can see what those predictions were below:
In this article, I will share with you my thoughts on the AFC championship game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Kansas City Chiefs. As you will see, I have placed a $1,000 bet on that game, for which I’ll show you my betting ticket.
Also, I will share with you an incredible story of a guy who cashed close to $73,000 on a four-leg parlay last weekend. Stay tuned until the end, you will also see his live reaction when he won his bet.
This will be just the third time in NFL history that the two Conference title games have a point spread below a field goal. We are in for great matchups! Let’s get started on my betting tips for the AFC championship game!
AFC CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP GAME: CINCINNATI BENGALS AT KANSAS CITY CHIEFS
Let me get straight to the point: I have placed a $1,000 wager on the Cincinnati Bengals to win outright at +106 odds with the Coolbet sportsbook on Monday at 10:45 am Eastern Time. Therefore, my potential net gain is $1,060.
According to a director at Caesars sportsbook, a very influential bettor took a large bet on Cincinnati not very long after the lines were posted. That reinforces my confidence in this wager.
Since the 2014/15 NFL season, a total of 13 teams faced an opponent in the Conference Championship Round after defeating them during the regular season. Such teams racked up a 10-3 record straight up and also a 10-3 record against the spread (ATS) in the conference title game. In other words, they kept enjoying nice success over that same opponent.
Just for clarification, if two teams met a couple of times during the regular season because they were divisional opponents, then one of those teams needed to have won BOTH meetings in order to qualify here.
In the current case, the Bengals picked up the W by a 27-24 score back in Week 13 against Kansas City, after trailing 24-17 through three quarters.
The Bengals have no complex when facing Patrick Mahomes and company. They also beat them a couple of times last season, including a 27-24 overtime thriller in the AFC Championship game. As a matter of fact, Cincy is 5-1 ATS in the last six meetings between these two clubs.
The Chiefs get one extra day of rest since they played on Saturday, rather than Sunday. However, over the past 14 years the team with the added day off in the Conference Championship game has produced a 15-13 record ATS, which is not enough to convince me that it has a significant effect.
Cincinnati displayed an extraordinary performance in Buffalo last week. They looked simply dominant against the Bills, and they are now riding an incredible 10-game winning streak. They have looked super strong since their humiliating 32-13 defeat on Monday Night Football in Cleveland.
Both teams have a high-powered attack, but the key difference lies on the defensive side of the ball where Cincinnati gets a big edge. Over their past eight games, the Bengals have allowed an average of just 16.8 points per game.
Let’s see what the famous EPA statistic has to say about each team’s defense. Over the entire season, the Bengals finished in 7th place compared to the 15th place for K.C. Now, if you focus only on games since Week 14, Cincy was the second-best defense in the league, while the Chiefs got rank #7.
You have all heard about Patrick Mahomes suffering a high ankle sprain against the Jaguars last week. Mahomes has confirmed he will play through the injury next Sunday. However, that will certainly limit his mobility and increase the chances of him getting sacked by underrated defensive linemen Trey Hendrickson and Sam Hubbard.
The Chiefs have posted a 1-8-1 record ATS in their last 10 home games. On top of that, here is another trend to consider: Kansas City is 0-5 ATS the last five times they faced a team with a winning record. As a comparison, the Bengals have presented an impressive 13-2-1 record ATS the last 16 times they squared off against a team with a record above .500.
You may be wondering whether I have a lean on the total or not. The last three times these teams met, the total was set at 51, 53 and 54.5. Right now, the line stands at 47 points, which is lower than usual due to the injury to Mahomes. In NFL Over/Under betting, 47 is a key number. If the line drops to 46.5, you may want to consider taking the over. Personally, I don’t expect to bet the total but if I was forced to do it, that would be my plan.
Pick: Bengals straight up (+106 odds)
Lean: Over 47
Indiana Bettor Cashes Big Money!
As promised, let me share with you a feel-good story of a guy from Indiana who bet $5 on a four-leg parlay where he tried to predict which player would score the first touchdown in each of the four Divisional games.
He picked Travis Kelce in the Jags versus Chiefs game, then Dallas Goedert in the Giants-Eagles game. For the early Sunday game, he took Ja’Marr Chase.
Since he had won all three predictions, all he had left was Dalton Schultz to score the first TD in the Dallas versus San Francisco. What he had at stake was a $73,000 payout. No need to mention he was nervous as heck, and let me show you his reaction when Schultz scored the opening TD of the game by clicking here!
Wow, that must have been a thrilling experience, I am so happy for this guy!
I’ll be back for you later this week with some betting tips regarding the NFC Championship game between the San Francisco 49ers and the Philadelphia Eagles.
I’m Professor MJ, bye bye my friend!
(Sports Betting Expert / University Professor / PhD in statistics)