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Chiefs are playoff underdogs for first time since drafting Patrick Mahomes

Mike Florio and Chris Simms take a look at the spreads entering the NFC and AFC Championships to unpack why the Bengals and Eagles have the upper hand.

A Patrick Mahomes injury is what it took for the Chiefs to be playoff underdogs for the first time since Mahomes arrived in Kansas City.

The Bengals are currently favored by 1.5 points over the Chiefs at most sports books, reflecting the feeling among most bettors that Mahomes, playing on an injured ankle, will be less than 100 percent effective in Sunday’s AFC Championship Game.

That ends an impressive run for the Chiefs: They had been favored in 14 consecutive postseason games, which includes all of Mahomes’ playoff starts as well as their last two playoff games with Alex Smith as their starting quarterback.

With Mahomes as their starting quarterback, the Chiefs have been favored by as much as 12.5 points in the postseason (last year’s 42-21 win over the Steelers) and by as little as 1.5 points (their 31-20 win over the 49ers in Super Bowl LIV). But they’re now in new territory, heading into a game that they’re not expected to win.