The cream is finally rising to the top of the AFC and bookmakers are all over it.
After eight weeks this season, the Kansas City Chiefs and New England Patriots were both sitting at 4-4 on the outside looking in of the NFL playoff picture. Fast forward to Tuesday and they’re the hottest teams in the conference, winners of four and five straight games, respectively.
Kansas City was as high as +700 ($100 wins $700) to reach Super Bowl LVI after Week 8, while New England was around +1400 ($100 wins $1,400). As you can imagine, those prices are long gone in the market.
Hot streaks and respect tend to go hand in hand in this racket and bookmakers are very quick to raise teams up the betting boards once perception increases.
FanDuel Sportsbook is currently dealing the Chiefs at +330 and Patriots at +650.
AFC standings after Week 8
1. Tennessee Titans (6-2)
2. Las Vegas Raiders (5-2)
3. Baltimore Ravens (5-2)
4. Buffalo Bills (5-2)
5. Cincinnati Bengals (5-3)
6. Los Angeles Chargers (4-3)
7. Pittsburgh Steelers (4-3)
AFC standings after Week 11 with current FanDuel odds
1. Tennessee Titans (8-3) +750
2. Baltimore Ravens (7-3) +500
3. New England Patriots (7-4) +650
4. Kansas City Chiefs (7-4) +330
5. Cincinnati Bengals (6-4) +2000
6. Los Angeles Chargers (6-4) +1000
7. Buffalo Bills (6-4) +400
Kansas City’s offense is finally starting to click thanks to an offensive line that’s gotten progressively healthier over the last month. Superstar quarterback Patrick Mahomes is seeing much more time to survey the pocket and find open targets in space.
Thing is, it’s the Chiefs defense that has progressed the most. Adding Melvin Ingram to the mix with Chris Jones and Frank Clark has completely bolstered the front seven and Kansas City is allowing only 12 points per game in the last four contests.
“Nobody wants to see the Chiefs in the playoffs when they’re running like this,” one professional bettor told NESN. “They look like a team that’s about to get hot and rip off five or six more wins and finish near the top of the conference. Kansas City will likely be favored in every game the rest of the regular season.”
New England’s defense is even more dominant lately, allowing just 10 points per game over its five-game winning streak. The Patriots’ running game continues to churn butter and Pro Football Focus says two of New England’s five best players this season are offensive linemen.
By the way, Mac Jones is favored to win Offensive Rookie of the Year.
“New England is the anti-Kansas City,” the bettor analyzed. “Bill Belichick built this team to stop the Chiefs, not fly up and down the field with them. New England’s defense and running game are going to be a problem in the postseason. Especially if teams have to roll through Foxboro.”