AFC Championship Favorite Changes
January 24, 2023

News broke yesterday that the favorite in the AFC Championship Game has flipped. While this is not altogether unusual, it is rare that it happens in such a big game. Football playoff games are some of the most wagered on events anywhere in the world, so the lines are very carefully posted and monitored by sportsbooks.

After the playoff games on Sunday, the Chiefs were initially installed as 1.5 point favorites against the Bengals. However, when news broke Monday morning about Patrick Mahomes’ high ankle sprain, the spread was lowered to Kansas City -1. Given this information and how the Bengals dismantled the Bills on Sunday, over 80% of the bets and almost 90% of the money came in on the Bengals. This led to the flip, which originally took place around 4:40ET on Monday, when the spread was changed to Bengals -1 points. It has since increased to Bengals -1.5 points.

Both the public and the sharps seem to be backing the Bengals, but its hard to determine at what spread they placed their bet. If Patrick Mahomes can play and be effective, there may be some value in the Chiefs. The line may even move back down to Bengals -1 if Mahomes’ ankle gets stronger and he is able to have a good week at practice.

Mahomes’ ankle has also affected the under, dropping the total from 50 to 47 because of the sharp money. The under is receiving 31% bets but 48% money, a sharp under bet discrepancy.

We will keep an eye on this moving forward and keep you updated.