Chiefs vs. Bills: AFC Championship Betting Preview – January 24, 2021

Posted By Staff on January 24, 2021

The AFC Championship round of the 2021 NFL Playoffs features the Buffalo Bills and the Kansas City Chiefs on January 24, 2021 at 6:40 PM ET on CBS. The Bills are who are underdogs in the game with a point total of .

The game marks the 50th meeting between the teams in a series the Bills lead 26-22-1. The most recent game between the teams unfolded in Week 6 of the 2020 season, when Kansas City notched a 26-17 road win.

In that contest, Patrick Mahomes completed 21 of 26 passes for 225 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions, while rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire compiled a career-high 161 rushing yards on 26 carries. Travis Kelce reeled in both of Mahomes’ scoring tosses as part of a 5-65 line. For the Bills, Josh Allen threw for a season-low 122 yards while also notching a pair of touchdowns and one interception. Kansas City held NFL receptions leader Stefon Diggs to six catches for 46 yards, although one of those grabs went for a touchdown.

The betting insights in this article reflect betting data from DraftKings as of January 18, 2021, 2:41 PM ET. See table below for current betting odds and CLICK HERE to bet at DraftKings Sportsbook.

Chiefs vs Bills Betting Odds

Chiefs vs Bills Props

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Betting breakdown

The line for this game will be a particularly interesting one to track leading up to kickoff. That’s due to the monumental question mark that is Mahomes’ health at the moment. The reigning Super Bowl MVP suffered a concussion in the third quarter of Sunday’s divisional-round win over the Browns and will naturally have to clear the league’s five-step protocol for head injuries before suiting up for this contest.

Head coach Andy Reid sounded an optimistic initial tone about Mahomes on Sunday evening, but that was just in the wake of the injury. Clarity on Mahomes’ condition should progressively be obtained beginning with Wednesday’s initial practice, when all eyes will be on whether the multi-time Pro Bowler takes any reps.

Facing the tricky proposition of setting an initial line with Mahomes’ status for the game highly uncertain, oddsmakers actually slotted the Bills as 1.5-point favorites Sunday evening. However, the Chiefs were quickly bet up to 2.5-point favorites, and the line bumped up to 3.0 points early Monday before ticking back down to 2.5. Currently, Kansas City is listed as a home favorite.

Naturally, the Mahomes factor extends into the projected total as well. With KC naturally having reduced offensive potency if Chad Henne is forced to start Sunday’s contest but still possessing some explosive passing game weapons, oddsmakers set the initial number at a robust 54 points. That figure tumbled slightly to 53.5, toggled back up to 54, and then went back all the way to 53 early Tuesday. The number currently sits at

Betting the Total (Over/Under)

  • Kansas City and its opponents have combined to score more than 54.0 in nine games (56.2% of matchups).
  • Buffalo’s games have gone over 54.0 points on eight occasions (50% of games).
  • These two teams score a combined average of 60.9 points per game, higher than the total for this matchup by 6.9 points.
  • The over/under for this game is set at 54.0 points, 8.0 points higher than the two teams’ opponents scoring average.
  • The over/under in this game is 54.0 points, 1.8 higher than the average total in Chiefs games this season.
  • This season, Bills games have resulted in an average scoring total of 54.8, which is 0.8 points higher than the over/under for this matchup.
  • The Chiefs are the sixth-highest scoring team in the NFL this year. The Bills have scored the second-most points.
  • This game features the NFL’s 16th-ranked (Buffalo) and 10th-ranked (Kansas City) scoring defenses.

Chiefs Betting Insights

  • Kansas City’s games went over the point total in eight out of 16 opportunities during the regular season (50%).
  • Kansas City went just 7-9 against the spread.
  • The Chiefs went just 5-8 ATS when playing as at least 3-point favorites.

Bills Betting Insights

  • Buffalo compiled an 11-5 record against the spread during the regular season.
  • The Bills were 5-4 ATS when playing as at least 3-point underdogs.
  • Buffalo’s games hit the over in 11 out of 16 outings during the regular season (68.8%).

Chiefs vs Bills: Head to Head

Chiefs vs Bills: Last Meeting
Date Favorite Home Team Spread Total Favorite Moneyline Underdog Moneyline Total Yards Result
10/19/2020 Chiefs Bills -5.5 54.5 -245 +210 466-206 KC 26-17 KC

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Bills vs. Chiefs matchup

Assuming Mahomes is healthy and ready to roll, this matchup fits the criteria of the conference’s two best teams facing off for the right to be the Super Bowl representative. The Chiefs and Bills boasted 14-2 and 13-3 regular-season marks, respectively, and both feature explosive offenses and strong secondaries.

That said, the soft spot for each defensive unit is against the run. The Chiefs did a reasonable job at times against the formidable duo of Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt in last Sunday’s divisional-round win, but each back still averaged over 5.0 yards per carry. Kansas City is now allowing 128.9 rushing yards per home game, along with 4.67 adjusted line yards per game and 4.47 RB yards per carry. However, the Bills aren’t ideally suited to take advantage, unless they opt for a relatively stark departure from their usual offensive approach. Buffalo has run the ball just 39.0 percent of the time this regular season and postseason, and rookie Zack Moss is on IR with an ankle injury. Devin Singletary averaged a solid 4.4 yards per carry during the regular season, but he’s logged just 10 combined carries for 46 yards over the Bills’ first two playoff games.

That theoretically leaves plenty on Allen’s plate. The third-year quarterback enjoyed a breakout season, yet he’ll have a tall task on his hands Sunday. The Chiefs excelled at clamping down on receivers this past regular season, surrendering just a 59.7 percent catch rate to wideouts. They will be tested significantly by the trio of Diggs, John Brown and Cole Beasley on Sunday, but it’s worth noting the Chiefs held Brown without a catch on four targets in the regular-season meeting while also limiting Diggs to his second-lowest yardage tally of the campaign.

On the other side, Mahomes, if healthy, will face a Bills secondary that has played some of its best ball since the stretch run of the regular season. However, the Chiefs’ signal-caller is clearly matchup-proof, and KC will undoubtedly keep the pressure on, considering Reid elects to throw the ball 61.9 percent of the time. The Bills did do a good job against the big plays Mahomes and his weapons specialize in, however, limiting teams to 6.1 yards per attempt on the road on their way to giving up the sixth-fewest passing yards per game when traveling (202.1).

While all eyes will be on Mahomes’ health this week, the status of Edwards-Helaire will also be worth monitoring. As noted earlier, the Bills had no answer for the rookie running back in the Week 6 matchup, and Buffalo gave up 126.5 rushing yards per game on the road this season. They also come into the contest allowing 4.51 RB yards per carry. Just as important, Buffalo ranks dead last with 1.48 second-level yards per carry surrendered, while Kansas City’s offensive line ranks seventh in the NFL with the 1.32 second-level yards per tote it facilitates.

When the Chiefs Have the Ball

  • The Chiefs, on average, score 6.2 more points per game this season (29.6) than the Bills allow (23.4).
  • In games where Kansas City score at least 29.6 points this season, they are 8-1 overall and 5-4 against the spread.
  • When the Buffalo defense allows 23.4 points or fewer this year, the Bills have accumulated an 8-0 overall record and a 6-2 record against the spread.
  • The Chiefs hold a 63.4-yard advantage in total yards gained versus total yards allowed compared to the Bills defense this season (415.8 to 352.4). The Chiefs average 6.3 yards per play while the Bills give up 5.5 per play.
  • When the Kansas City offense puts together a game with at least their 2020 average in yardage, they are 7-0 overall and 3-4 against the spread this season.
  • When Buffalo allows fewer total yards to opposing offenses than their season average, they are 4-3 against the spread and 6-1 overall this season.
  • The Bills defense has given up an average of 119.6 yards per game to opposing running games this season. That total is about the same as the rushing output per contest for the Chiefs (112.1).
  • In games where the Kansas City rushing attack puts together at least their season average this season, the Chiefs are 7-0 overall and 4-3 against the spread.
  • When Buffalo limits opposing teams to 119.6 rushing yards or fewer this year, they are 7-2 against the spread and 9-0 overall.
  • The Chiefs have turned the ball over 1 time per game this season, while the Bills have averaged 1.6 takeaways per contest.
  • When Kansas City turns the football over 1 time or fewer this season, they are 12-2 overall and 7-7 against the spread.
  • Buffalo is 8-1 against the spread and 8-1 overall this season when they force at least 1.6 turnovers in a game.

When the Bills Have the Ball

  • The Bills rack up 8.7 more points per game (31.3) than the Chiefs allow (22.6).
  • When Buffalo records at least 31.3 points, it is 6-0 against the spread and 6-0 overall.
  • This season, Kansas City has a 5-4 record against the spread and an 8-1 record overall in games when it holds opponents to 29.6 or fewer points.
  • The Bills rack up 38.1 more yards per game (396.4), than the Chiefs allow per outing (358.3). The Bills average 6.1 yards per play, while the Chiefs allow 5.6 per play.
  • Kansas City’s record last season when they accumulated at least their season average in total yards: 5-1 overall and 4-2 ATS.
  • In games Kansas City holds its opponents to 358.3 or fewer yards, it has a 5-1 record ATS and a 6-0 record overall.
  • This season, the Bills rack up 107.6 rushing yards per game, 14.5 fewer per game than the Chiefs allow per contest (122.1).
  • Buffalo has a 3-3 ATS record and a 6-0 overall record when the team rushes for at least 107.6 yards.
  • This season, Kansas City is 4-5 against the spread and 9-0 overall when holding opponents to no more than 122.1 rushing yards.
  • This year, the Bills turn the ball over 1.4 times per game, just per game than the 1.4 the Chiefs force on average.
  • Buffalo has a 5-4 record against the spread and an 8-1 record overall when it turns the ball over 1.4 times or less.
  • This season, Kansas City has a 2-2 record against the spread and a 4-0 record overall when it forces at least 1.4 turnovers.

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Chiefs Players to Watch

  • Patrick Mahomes II leads the team with 4,740 passing yards (316.0 yards per game) and has a 66.3% completion percentage this year (390-of-588) while throwing 38 touchdowns and six interceptions in 15 games. He also has 302 rushing yards on 63 carries with two touchdowns, averaging 20.1 yards per game.
  • Clyde Edwards-Helaire has taken 181 attempts for a team-leading 803 rushing yards (61.8 yards per game) while scoring four touchdowns in 13 games. He’s also caught 36 passes for 297 yards (22.8 receiving yards per game) with one touchdown through the air.
  • Le’Veon Bell has 328 yards on 82 carries (29.8 ypg), with two rushing touchdowns over the course of 11 games.
  • This season, Travis Kelce has 105 catches (on 145 targets) to lead the team with 1,416 yards (94.4 per game) with 11 touchdowns in 15 games.
  • Tyreek Hill’s statline this year shows 87 grabs for 1,276 yards and 15 touchdowns over 15 games. He averages 85.1 receiving yards per game and has been targeted 134 times.
  • Over 16 games in 2020, Mecole Hardman has caught 41 passes on 62 targets for 560 yards and four touchdowns, averaging 35.0 receiving yards per game.
  • Chris Jones has registered a team-leading 7.5 sacks, while adding 3.0 TFL and 36 tackles over 15 games.
  • Daniel Sorensen has collected 92 tackles, 2.0 TFL, and three interceptions to lead the team in tackles so far in 15 games over the course of the 2020 campaign.
  • Tyrann Mathieu has a team-high six interceptions and has tacked on 63 tackles, 3.0 TFL, and nine passes defended 15 in games this season.

Bills Players to Watch

  • This year, Josh Allen has racked up 4,546 passing yards (284.1 yards per game) while going 396-for-572 (69.2% completion percentage) and throwing 37 touchdowns and 10 interceptions in 16 games. He has tacked on 420 rushing yards on 102 carries with eight touchdowns, averaging 26.3 yards per game.
  • Devin Singletary has racked up a team-high 686 rushing yards (42.9 yards per game) and scored two touchdowns in 16 games. He has added 38 catches for 269 yards (16.8 receiving yards per game).
  • This season, Stefon Diggs has 127 catches (on 168 targets) to lead the team with 1,535 yards (95.9 per game) with eight touchdowns in 16 games.
  • Cole Beasley has also tacked on 82 catches for 967 yards and four touchdowns over 15 games this year. He has been targeted 107 times and puts up 64.5 receiving yards per game.
  • Gabriel Davis has racked up 599 yards on 35 passes with seven touchdowns in 2020, averaging 37.4 yards per game on 62 targets in 16 contests.
  • A.J. Klein has 5.0 sacks to lead the team, and has also racked up 5.0 TFL and 73 tackles over 16 games.
  • Jordan Poyer has totaled 119 tackles, 4.0 TFL, two sacks, and two interceptions to lead the team in tackles so far in 16 games over the course of the 2020 campaign.

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