With the support of Cincinnati behind them, the Bengals have shifted into two-point favorites ahead of their matchup with the Chiefs this weekend. Kansas City actually opened as favorites, but Patrick Mahomes is dealing with a high-ankle sprain, and the Bengals just demolished the Buffalo Bills on the road in the snow, causing the lines to shift.
“If the Bengals win, and man, if they play like they did this past weekend, it's going to be tough to bet against them,” said AGA Senior Vice President Casey Clark. “That could be bad news for the book, so it will be really interesting to see how it goes.”
The upcoming matchup is a rematch of last year’s AFC title bout. The Chiefs got off to a quick start but sputtered in the second half and allowed the Bengals to claw a 27-24 win in overtime. Cincy is also 3-0 against the Chiefs in the Joe Burrow, most recently defeating them 27-24 in Week 13.
As close as the heavyweight bout is expected to be, a majority of Ohio bettors are likely to be behind the Bengals—that’s assuming that past trends hold.
“We absolutely have a lot of data and in [Sunday’s] game, for instance, against the Bills, nearly 90% of all Ohio fans bet on the Bengals to win," said Goldhoff. "Everyone in Ohio wants the Bengals to win and they bet that way."
Now that even more states have sports betting services than last year, the potential revenue totals for Super Bowl betting could be paradigm-shifting. Last year saw a $3.3 billion, or 78% increase, on the previous year’s betting total, so it will be interesting to see what the growth is like this year.
The winner of the AFC Championship will play either the San Francisco 49ers or Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LVII. California, as previously mentioned, does not have a legal sports betting market, but Philadelphia does.