We wrap up the NFL playoffs in style on Sunday night with the Chiefs and Bills, a matchup between two extraordinary quarterbacks in the AFC. The game promises to be truly popcorn-inspiring. With some sides, totals and props being offered, here’s what jumps out to me on DraftKings Sportsbook for this game.
Kansas City has been one of the worst teams against the spread this season in the NFL, going a disastrous 7-10 overall including last week’s narrow escape against Cleveland and are 6-9 as favorites. So, do I trust them to cover the three this weekend against the Bills? It’s very difficult to trust this Chiefs team to put their foot on the gas and pull away from a team, considering it’s not something they’ve done all year, but it’s certainly easy to trust them to win considering it’s all they’ve done now for two seasons. I’m worried about Josh Allen coming off his performance against the Ravens, where he threw for just 206 yards and completed one of six passes 20 or more yards downfield. He looked unsure of himself, and I think that carries over into this game at least for the beginning of it.
The Chiefs have been better against the pass than the run, and luckily for them, this Buffalo team has shown little desire to do the latter of late. I think this game plays into the hands of the Kansas City defense and that’s a scary thought when you consider the mismatch on the other side of the ball with Mahomes going against a porous secondary. If you make one bet all weekend, I think it should be this one.
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People are expecting this to be a shootout given the quality of the two quarterbacks, but I personally don’t see it. Not only does Mahomes rarely go for over 300 yards in the postseason, but the Chiefs are also incredibly methodical in their drives. They don’t thrive on chunk plays, as much as you may think that given many of their heroic late drives. Instead, this offense is one that rates right in the middle of the league in pace and that considerably drops off in the second half, when they’re 22nd in the NFL. The Bills? Not only are they 28th in total pace, running a play every 28.65 seconds, but they also refuse to speed things up when trailing by a touchdown or more, ranking 26th. Also, in the second half they’re 29th in the NFL.
Those are a lot of numbers, but they tell the same story: These are two slow-moving teams. That should remain the case if this game gets away from the Bills, and it should be the case all second half. This is a very high number, far too high for this game.
Remember when I said Mahomes rarely goes for 300 yards in the postseason? He’s only thrown for 300 yards once in his six career playoff games. The Bills ranked 22nd against the run this season, and with Clyde Edwards-Helaire potentially back in the mix, I think they will try to get the ground game going against this weak Buffalo unit. That means fewer throws, and in a methodical offense, I don’t think the chances are high Mahomes lights it up here and has a monster game. This is always a tough one to swallow, but the trends tell us it’s probably a good one.
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