Home teams have dominated the conference championship games for most of the last decade. We dive into that and more in our list of Conference Championship round trends to know in the NFL.
One of the most challenging things for novice NFL bettors is to sift through the countless trends in each game and determine their relevance or impact on the game at hand.
For example, head-to-head data between two teams dating back to the 1970s provide little insight since none of the players taking the field were born at that time. Thus, we aim to give you the most relevant information and trends to use when making your weekly wagers.
Here are our top NFL trends to know for the AFC and NFC Conference Championship Games (odds via DraftKings Sportsbook).
Top NFL Betting Trends for the Conference Championships
Eagles (-140 ML) vs. 49ers, Chiefs (-115 ML) vs. Bengals
Over the last nine seasons, home teams are 14-4 straight up and 12-6 against the spread in the conference championships.
Through the lens of the last nine seasons, home teams have dominated in the conference championships. However, underdogs have been on a good run more recently, covering each of the two games (and winning one outright) last year, and going 7-5 ATS over the past six years. Dating back to 2000, favorites are 28-16 SU in conference championship games. And in the previous 20 instances where a home team was favored by fewer than seven points, those home favorites are 14-6 SU and 12-8 ATS (with the Over going 11-9).
Specifically for the AFC Championship Game, the home team is 13-3 SU and 10-6 ATS in the previous 16 seasons.
Chiefs -1 vs. Bengals
Andy Reid is 24-16-1 ATS and 31-10 SU when facing a team for the second time in a season (including the playoffs).
Most of this data comes from the second of two divisional games, but this is the rare case where head coach Andy Reid and the Kansas City Chiefs are facing a non-divisional opponent in the playoffs after meeting them in the regular season (Bengals beat the Chiefs 27-24 in Week 13). Furthermore, Reid is also 8-6-1 ATS and 8-7 SU in the second game when losing the first matchup.
Quarterback Patrick Mahomes has played seven games in his NFL career looking to avenge a loss to the same team twice in a season. He is 5-2 SU in the second game, with the only losses coming to Tom Brady and the New England Patriots in 2018-19 and Cincinnati in last year’s AFC Championship Game.
Reid made history with the Divisional Round win over the Jacksonville Jaguars, as he became the first head coach to win 10-plus playoff games with two different franchises (Eagles and Chiefs). However, something has to give as Cincinnati is in the midst of a franchise-best 10-game winning streak.
Since 2003, underdogs in the conference championship games are 18-20 ATS, the only round they are below .500 in that span.
In the Super Bowl era (since 1966), underdogs are 51-60-1 ATS in conference championships. However, if any underdogs are going to cover, trends say San Francisco and Cincinnati have a great shot at doing so. The 49ers are 10-2 ATS during their current 12-game winning streak, while Joe Burrow is 3-0 SU and ATS against Kansas City.
Eagles-49ers Over 45.5
The Over is 14-5-2 in the NFC Championship Game since 2002.
The Over has hit at an even higher rate over the past eight years, cashing six times (75%). And pay attention to line movement if this total creeps up to 46, as the Over is 12-2 (dating back to 1988) in NFC Championship Games with a total of 46 points or more.
From a point spread perspective, when the NFC Championship Game has a line of 3.5 points or fewer, the SU winner is 22-2 ATS, though one of those non-covers happened last year when San Francisco covered as 3.5-point underdogs in a game it lost to Los Angeles 20-17.
Travis Kelce Over yards prop
Over the last three seasons, Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce has eclipsed his total yards prop in all seven games.
It's not often we hear of trends concerning player props, but the run Travis Kelce has been on in the postseason is something to pay attention to.
The Chiefs tight end's O/U for receiving yards against Jacksonville was anywhere from 79.5-81.5, and he easily exceeded those expectations with 98 yards and two touchdowns. Cincinnati held Kelce to four catches for 56 yards in their Week 13 meeting and 25 yards in their regular-season meeting last year, but Kelce had 95 yards in the AFC Championship Game against the Bengals.
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