Bills, Bengals, Chiefs the AFC wild-card betting favourites

Buffalo Bills quarterback Josh Allen (17) looks to pass. (Steven Senne/AP)

A clash of AFC East division rivals will highlight the Saturday schedule on Wild Card Weekend as the Buffalo Bills play host to the New England Patriots as 4-point favourites on the NFL odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

Buffalo clinched the division crown in Week 18 with a decisive 27-10 win over the New York Jets, extending its current straight-up win streak to four games going into Saturday night’s matchup at Highmark Stadium.

After enduring a mid-season 3-5 straight-up swoon the Bills are peaking at the right time. The team has averaged 30 points per game and claimed victory by multi-point margins in each of its four recent wins. The Bills’ recent steady performance has helped them cement their position among the favourites on the updated Super Bowl 56 odds, where they trail only Green Bay and Kansas City as a +750 wager.

Conversely, the Patriots have struggled since briefly claiming the top of the AFC East standings during a seven-game SU win streak. New England closed out its schedule on a shaky 1-3 SU and ATS run, with its lone victory during that stretch coming in Jacksonville. However, the Patriots enjoy a lengthy track record of success in Buffalo, where they have gone 16-2 SU in their past 18 visits, including a 3-1 SU mark as road underdogs.

AFC Wild Card action kicks off on Saturday afternoon as the Cincinnati Bengals host the Las Vegas Raiders as 5.5-point home chalk at online betting sites. The Wild Card Weekend edition of Sunday Night Football then also features a key AFC clash, as the Kansas City Chiefs battle the Pittsburgh Steelers as heavy 13-point favourites.

The Raiders completed an unlikely march into the post-season with Sunday night’s 35-32 win over the Los Angeles Chargers. Las Vegas now rides a four-game SU win streak, and has seen each of its three most recent wins come as betting underdogs. After clinching the AFC North crown in Week 17, the Bengals rested several regulars in last weekend’s 21-16 loss to Cleveland. That includes quarterback Joe Burrow, who thew for eight total scores while leading Cincinnati to crucial wins over the Chiefs and Baltimore in his past two starts.

The Chiefs enter the playoffs on a 9-1 SU run, and have limited opponents to just 10.2 points per game during a 6-0 SU run on home turf. The Steelers backed into the post-season on the strength of the Raiders’ narrow victory over the Chargers. However, Pittsburgh was humbled in a 36-10 road loss to the Chiefs just three weeks ago, and has averaged just 14.3 points per game in its past five visits to Kansas City.

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