The AFC Championship matchup is set between the Tennessee Titans and Kansas City Chiefs. The Chiefs are favored by 7.5 points in the opening spread, per OddsShark. The over-under started at 51.5 points but moved up to 52 for the AFC Championship.
The Titans are one of the hottest teams in the NFL doing the unthinkable on the road during the postseason. Tennessee started the playoffs with a win at Foxborough over the Patriots and followed it up with a win in Baltimore over the Ravens. Not only did the Titans win, but Tennessee dominated the Ravens for the majority of the game.
It looked like the Chiefs were going to suffer a similar upset after trailing by three touchdowns to start their Divisional Round matchup with the Texans. Patrick Mahomes was able to overcome the sizable deficit to eventually lead the Chiefs to a comfortable victory and cover the spread.
The Chiefs Defense Will Be Tested by Titans RB Derrick Henry
The Chiefs will face a difficult test against Titans running back Derrick Henry. The Chiefs have struggled against the run this season and will look to slow down the Titans rusher, something no one has been able to do so far in the postseason. Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill described what it is like to play with Henry when he is performing at such a high level.
“He’s special,” Tannehill said, per ESPN. “I think he is special because he has the size that is extremely rare in a running back. But he also has the speed to go with it. So he has the size to run those 2- or 3-yard runs that are physical when there’s no hole. He’s getting the yards to keep us ahead of the chains. But also if he breaks free and gets past the first level, he has the speed to take it 60 or 70 yards, which is extremely rare and what makes him special.”
AFC Championship: Chiefs End Titans Run
The Titans showed no signs of slowing down on the road against the No. 1 team in the AFC. Tennessee will be facing a more battle-tested team at Arrowhead Stadium as the Chiefs are playing in their second straight AFC Championship game. Henry may be able to continue his hot streak, but it is hard to imagine the Titans keeping up with the Chiefs offense.
Kansas City is 12-5 against the spread so far this season and the total has slightly trended over in nine of 17 contests, per OddsShark. The Titans are also doing well in Vegas going 11-7 against the spread heading into the conference title game. Tennessee has hit the over in 10 games and the under in eight games.
Both teams should be able to put up points but look for Mahomes’ experience to be the difference in the game. I like Mahomes to make his first Super Bowl appearance as the Chiefs close out the game late to cover the spread.
Heavy’s Pick: Chiefs 31 Titans 23. Chiefs Cover -7.5 Point Spread. Over on the Total.