AFC Championship Preview: Cincinnati Bengals vs Kansas City Chiefs

Never say never with Patrick Mahomes as your quarterback. Photo Courtesy: All-Pro Reels

By DaVince “Dino” Wright

Game Info
Cincinnati Bengals vs Kansas City Chiefs 
Sunday – January 30 – 2:00 p.m.
GEHA Field at Arrowhead Stadium – Kansas City, MO

Records Before the Game
Cincinnati Bengals (10-7, 5-3 Away)
Kansas City Chiefs (12-5, 7-2 Home)

No one saw this coming. Yeah, a few people picked the Chiefs to represent the AFC, but no one picked the Bengals! The Bills, Ravens and Steelers were the teams that were slated to play in this game. NFL fanatics and analysts gave the Bengals a very slim chance of playing in this game. Let’s take a look at this year’s championship game at Arrowhead.

How did they get here!
The Kansas City Chiefs went into overtime to beat the Bills at home last week. That game was described as one of the best games every played in the NFL. It was an instant classic. 25 points were scored between the two teams in under a minute and 45 seconds. The Bengals went into Tennessee and beat the number one team in the AFC by a field goal. This game will either elevate the Bengals or solidify the legend of Patrick Mahomes.

Cincinnati Bengals
Someone didn’t give Joe Burrow the memo that he’s three years away of being one of the top quarterbacks in the league. Last season he was injured and missed the majority of the season. This season he has passed for 4611 yards with 34 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. His main target is wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase. He has 1455 receiving yards and 13 touchdowns. Running back Joe Mixon will be the key for the offense. He needs to touch the ball at least 15 times to establish the run. The defense is averaging 17.5 points per game. They struggle with stopping the run and give opposing runners gaps in the open field. Run defense will be the x-factor for the Bengals.

Kansas City Chiefs
Quarterback Patrick Mahomes will be the key for victory He has to get the ball in the hands of his play makers. TE Travis Kelce needs the ball early often. He will be the x-factor for the Chiefs offense. The Bengals defense struggle in two areas: Stopping the run and covering tight ends. The Chiefs game plan is simple. Allow Patrick Mahomes to play to his strengths and special teams play is key. Last week the Chiefs defense was null and void and played without fire at times. This game will be huge for the defense. They give up 28 points per game and that’s not a good idea especially with Joe Burrow under center for the Bengals.

ESPN has the Chiefs with a 69.6% chance of winning this game and heading to the Super Bowl. The over/under is 54.5, so take the over in this one. Both defenses have struggled in their last four games. I’m taking Kansas City by 10!

Final Score
Chiefs – 34
Bengals – 24