|Team||AFC Championship Odds|
|Kansas City Chiefs||+150|
|New England Patriots||+225|
|Los Angeles Chargers||+650|
The AFC road to the Super Bowl will go through Arrowhead Stadium. Or will it?
History is not playing in this tournament, but history does tell playoff home games have not been kind to Kansas City.
The Chiefs haven’t won at Arrowhead in the playoffs since the 1993 season. Yes, the Joe Montana days. Kansas City has been bounced at home the past two seasons in the playoffs. But, as Kansas City pass-rusher Justin Houston told reporters in recent days, “Don’t let the past poison your future.”
The Chiefs earned the No. 1 seed in the AFC with a dynamic offense led by 23-year-old MVP candidate Patrick Mahomes. Yet, Kansas City will be challenged. NFL betting can get rolling with some Wild Card weekend betting, and an argument made for all six teams to represent the conference.
Why to Bet the Chiefs: Their offense is incredible. Mahomes threw for more than 5,000 yards with 50 touchdown passes. They are running the ball well with Damien Williams in the post-Kareem Hunt era. The Chiefs few offensive flaws. Opponents will have to keep up with Kansas City in the postseason.
Why to Avoid the Chiefs: The defense is lacking. Up until allowing three points to putrid Oakland in Week 17, Kansas City allowed an average of 35.3 points in the previous five games. Kansas City has allowed more big plays than any defense in the NFL.
Why to Bet the Patriots: They’re the Patriots. No team in the NFL is better equipped at playoff play. It’s January. Bet against Bill Belichick and Tom Brady at your own peril. Remember, if the Patriots win in the divisional round and the Chiefs slip at home, the AFC Championship will be played in New England again.
Why to Avoid the Patriots: They seem to be missing a spark. Is Brady still great? Does he have enough playmakers to keep up with the great offenses in this tournament? Does the New England defense have enough difference makers?
Why to Bet the Texans: They’re quietly, a strong, consistent team. After starting 0-3, this team finished 11-2. It has quality players on both sides of the ball. Quarterback DeShaun Watson and wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins are a special combination.
Why to Avoid the Texans: Will the playoff stage be too big for coach Bill O’Brien? Is Watson ready to shine in his first playoff action? Are the Texans dynamic enough to make a real run when it counts?
Why to Bet the Ravens: Who’s hotter than the Ravens? Baltimore is 6-1 since rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson took over for an injured (and now healthy) Joe Flacco. Jackson has given this team personality and it believes in itself like none other. Oh, and having the NFL’s best defense doesn’t hurt, either.
Why to Avoid the Ravens: Will Jackson’s more-run-than-pass-attack run of luck in the postseason? Will the rookie finally get a case of the yips? Will an offense like the Chiefs’ be too much for the Ravens? It was in the regular season. And will speculation over John Harbaugh’s future be a playoff distraction?
Why to Bet the Chargers: They’re stacked. They may be the most talented roster in the league. They may be a No. 5 seed. But they did go 12-4. This team has lost just twice since Week 3. There is explosive ability on both sides of the ball. There are several players on this roster who can take over games, starting with quarterback Philip Rivers.
Why to Avoid the Chargers: There’s the whole Chargered thing. Whether, it’s fair to this roster or not, but the Chargers have history of choking when it counts. Is second-year coach Anthony Lynn ready for the pressure cooker of the postseason? Can the Chargers find a way to get past Baltimore, which stifled them, 22-10, in L.A. just two weeks ago.
Why to Bet the Colts: This team is playing with house money. The Colts are one of two teams in NFL history to make the playoffs after starting 1-5. Think about that. The Colts won nine of their final 10 games to make the playoffs. So, the Colts are for real. Quarterback Andrew Luck is special. His offensive line is nasty. The defense is underrated. There’s a lot to like here.
Why to Avoid the Colts: Are the Colts a little premature in their postseason readiness? Can they get through the rigors of three road playoff games? Can they pull off a road upset at Houston for the second time in a month?
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