New England Patriots at Kansas City Chiefs - 1/20/19 NFL AFC Championship Pick, Odds, and Prediction
New England Patriots vs. Kansas City Chiefs
Sunday, January 20, 2019 at 6:40 PM (Arrowhead Stadium)
Kansas City Chiefs -3 -- Over/Under: 56
The New England Patriots and the Kansas City Chiefs meet in the AFC Championship game from Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday evening.
The New England Patriots will be looking to advance to back-to-back Super Bowls and their 4th in the last 5 seasons after a 41-28 win over the Los Angeles Chargers in the divisional round. Tom Brady threw for 343 yards and a touchdown on 34 of 44 passing while Sony Michel rushed for 129 rushing yards and 3 touchdowns on 24 carries and Rex Burkhead added a touchdown of his own as well in the win. Julian Edelman led the Pats with 151 receiving yards coming on 9 receptions while James White had a team-high 15 catches for 97 yards and Phillip Dorsett added 4 catches for 41 yards and the Patriots’ lone receiving score as well in the win. Defensively, Adrian Clayborn and Trey Flowers each had a sack while Stephon Gilmore logged an interception and the McCourty Brothers, Devin and Jason, each had a team-high 5 tackles in the win. As a team, New England is averaging 393.4 yards of total offense and 27.2 points per game this season.
The Kansas City Chiefs will look to advance to their first Super Bowl since winning it all in 1969 and just their 3rd Super Bowl in franchise history after picking up a 31-13 divisional round win over the Indianapolis Colts in their last outing. Patrick Mahomes threw for 278 yards on 27 of 41 passing while rushing for a touchdown as well. Damien Williams led the Chiefs on the ground with 25 carries for 129 yards and a touchdown while Tyreek Hill and Darrel Williams each had a rushing TD as well in the win. Travis Kelce led the Chiefs with 108 receiving yards on 7 receptions while Tyreek Hill had 8 catches for 72 yards and Sammy Watkins added 6 grabs for 62 yards. Defensively, Justin Houston led the Chiefs with a pair of sacks while Dee Ford had a sack to go along with his team-high 4 tackles, the same amount of tackles as Anthony Hitchens. Ford also forced a fumble that Houston recovered in the winning effort. As a team, the Chiefs own the league’s highest offense in terms of total offense and scoring with league-highs of 425.6 yards of total offense and 35.3 points per game this season.
New England is 8-3 ATS in their last 11 playoff games and 17-8 ATS in their last 25 road games while the under is 8-2 in their last 10 games overall. Kansas City is 2-9 ATS in their last 11 playoff games and 2-5-1 ATS in their last 8 games overall while the over is 4-1 in their last 5 games against a team with a winning record. New England is 2-5 ATS in the last 7 meetings between these two teams.
I remember watching the week 6 shootout between these two teams, and remember being highly entertained as many were and thinking to myself that this was probably going to be the AFC title game and here we are. With that said, it’s been well-documented that this could end up being the coldest game in NFL history, with temperatures projected to be anywhere from 10 degrees to well below zero. Whether or not that ends up being the case, despite being at home, I personally favor New England here. I doubted the Chiefs last week and that came back to bite me, but playing in cold weather is nothing new for Tom Brady, who has had to play frequently in January in the cold weather up in Foxborough. A lot will be made of the Chargers making a game of in the 2nd half last week, but New England simply coasted to the finish line in that game in my opinion, and I think it says a lot as you could argue that the Chargers were as explosive as the Chiefs were for much of the season. Plus, it’s usually not a wise thing to go against Brady and Belichick in the postseason, and in their last 6 games against the league’s #1 offense in the postseason, Belichick is 5-1 and has held the opponent to 19 points per game. I think New England’s experience in these kinds of situations pay dividends here, so I’ll take the Patriots and the points in a game I see New England winning outright to head to yet another Super Bowl.