The Kansas City Chiefs claimed their second straight AFC conference title with a decisive 38-24 victory over the Buffalo Bills on Sunday night, and they now prepare to battle the Tampa Bay Buccaneers next week at Super Bowl 55 as 3.5-point favourites on the NFL odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
Kansas City returned to form in Sunday's date with Buffalo after eking out a narrow 22-17 win over Cleveland in the previous week's AFC Divisional Playoff matchup, and has now won outright in 27 of 29 overall contests ahead of next week's game at Raymond James Stadium.
Pegged as favourites again on the Super Bowl odds since ending a 50-year championship drought with a 31-20 win over the San Francisco 49ers last February at Super Bowl 54, the Chiefs have lived up to expectations. Kansas City has claimed victory by double-digit margins in seven of the team's 16 overall wins this season.
However, the Chiefs have been a betting disappointment since midseason, with last weekend's win over the Bills garnering them their first ATS victory in 10 contests. Despite their struggles at the sportsbooks, the Chiefs defense has made steady gains as the season has progressed, limiting opponents to just over 18 points per game over their past three wins.
While the Chiefs aim to be the first team to win consecutive Super Bowl titles in 16 years, the Buccaneers look to become the first team to win the Super Bowl on home turf when they battle Kansas City next weekend as underdogs. The Buccaneers once again silenced the naysayers with a 31-26 win in Green Bay in Sunday's NFC title game, extending their current SU win streak to seven games.
The Buccaneers have found a high gear since early December. With quarterback Tom Brady showing youthful form, Tampa Bay has averaged 34.3 points per game during its current tear, fueling a steady 6-2 ATS run at online betting sites. The Buccaneers have also won by big margins in four of their five SU victories on home turf. However, the team dropped a 27-24 decision as 3.5-point underdogs when the Chiefs visited back in Week 12. That ended a five-game SU win streak against Kansas City, but Tampa Bay maintains a steady 7-2 ATS record in its last nine meetings with the Chiefs.
Of greater concern is Tampa Bay's record against high-calibre opponents this season. While the Buccaneers managed to seize on opportunities in their playoff upset wins over New Orleans and Green Bay, each of their three home losses this season came against playoff-bound teams.