When it comes to historical analysis of AFC Championship performances, the Patriots are a rich farm at harvest time.
The Chiefs are a desert.
New England quarterback Tom Brady is playing in his 13th conference final, which is more than every other team except for the Steelers. He’s played seven at home, five on the road, one in a dome and two a mile high up. Brady and the Patriots are in the AFC Championship for the eighth consecutive season.
For all of the domination, the Patriots are just 2-3 in AFC title games on the road. They’ve lost their last three, both straight up and against the spread. All three of those games, however, were against Peyton Manning and stretch back to the 2006 season.
The Chiefs, as tumbleweeds and sand blows on to the betting trend sheets, have never hosted an AFC Championship game -- remarkable considering their founder’s name is on the AFC’s trophy.
“It’s been a long time coming,” said Clark Hunt, a son of Chiefs founder Lamar Hunt. “Since Andy [Reid] came here we’ve had a lot of shots, but we finally have a chance to win the AFC championship, and to do it at home is so special for us.”
Reid is just 2-6 overall against Bill Belichick, including 0-2 in the postseason. He’s 4-4 against the spread overall, 0-2 in the playoffs. The Chiefs covered a four-point spread in their 43-40 loss at New England in Week 6.
The forecasters on Thursday were backing away from calling this one of the all-time coldest games, thought it will be frigid. Of the ten thousand stats out there, the one that might be most impressive is that Brady is 12-2 in postseason games when the mercury is lower than 30 degrees at kickoff, 7-6-1 against the spread.
The coldest AFC title game he and the Patriots played came after the 2004 season when the temperature was 11 degrees and the wind chill was -1. They drilled the Patriots, 41-27. The game was in Pittsburgh,
That pass that slipped through Alshon Jeffery’s hands on Sunday not only ended the Eagles' season, it killed bettors who had over his yardage total for the game. What would have been at least a 5-yard gain, became a clinching interception for the Saints. Jeffery finished with 63 yards. His over/under total, via Parx, was 64.5. Ouch!
Sure hope optimistic Phillies fans pounced on the over when Caesars released their win total of 83 last week, It was up to 87 as of Thursday night. That number figures only to grow if the Fightins' land Bryce Harper and/or Manny Machado.
And for those thinking World Series, it’s definitely worth a trip over the bridge to play one of the apps in Jersey. SugarHouse and Parx are offering 13-1 on the Phils to win the title while Caesars is offering 18-1. William Hill and MGM are at 15-1.
Parx in South Philly is convenient for local residents or those going to the games, but doesn’t offer much beyond sports and horse wagering. The bar area is OK and the menu is being upgraded. SugarHouse in Fishtown and Parx’s main location in Bensalem have many more dining and gaming options ... Harrah’s is hoping to open sports betting at its casino in Chester on Tuesday.
William Hill-US said Thursday that 82 percent of its money-line plays for the NFC Championship were being laid on the Saints. In the AFC title game, 53 percent of money-line action was on K.C. Money for point-spread bets was about 50-50 on each game. WHUS is holding an $85,000 play on the Saints at -170 that would win $50k. They’re also holding a $52,000 bet on Kansas City laying 2.5 at -130 that would pay out 40 grand.