Bengals vs Chiefs AFC Conference Championship Props: Karlaftis Carves Up Cincy O-Line

The Bengals' worrisome offensive line was an afterthought in the rout over the Bills, but a relentless Chiefs rush is a different story. KC's George Karlaftis highlights our AFC Championship prop picks in what's a great matchup for the rookie.

Last Updated: Jan 29, 2023 2:43 PM ET Read Time: 4 min

The Kansas City Chiefs host the Cincinnati Bengals in the AFC Championship game, in a rematch of last year's thriller. As good as these sides have looked this season, both have weaknesses. Cincinnati's offensive line struggles to protect Joe Burrow at times, while Kansas City's stop unit has been a sieve in the red zone. 

I'm trying to take advantage of those areas by backing a Chiefs pass rusher and betting on Ja'Marr Chase to hit paydirt. Here are my best free NFL player props for the Bengals vs. Chiefs on January 29.

For more great NFL bets, check out Jason Logan's Bengals vs. Chiefs picks and predictions and our Ja'Marr Chase Player Spotlight by Jared Hochman!

Bengals vs Chiefs prop picks

Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.

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Bengals vs Chiefs AFC Conference Championship props

The Bengals did an excellent job of bottling up Buffalo's ground game last week but they surrendered 155 rushing yards to the Ravens in the Wild Card round. They were also a middle-of-the-pack team when it came to defending the run during the regular season, ranking 14th in the league in rush EPA and rush DVOA. 

Isiah Pacheco had 95 yards on just 12 carries last week, easily surpassing his rushing total, which was set at just 55.5 yards. He's seeing an even lower number this week, at just 48.5. The rookie has rumbled for at least 58 yards in nine of his last 10 games and is averaging 72.8 rushing yards on 13.8 carries per game during that span.

Although there's a chance that Clyde Edwards-Helaire could return to the lineup by Sunday, he's still on the IR and after missing more than two months, he'll likely be eased back. Ronald Jones also didn't take a single snap last week while Jerick McKinnon is nursing an ankle injury and didn't impress in rushing opportunities last week.

Expect Pachecho to see the lion's share of carries out of the backfield and there should be plenty to go around, with the Chiefs looking to take pressure off Patrick Mahomes

Isiah Pacheco Prop: Over 48.5 rushing yards (-115)

Sophomore Ja'Marr Chase has already become one of the best receivers in the league and his college chemistry with Joe Burrow has continued into the pros. Chase had 1,046 receiving yards in just 12 games this season and he's been racking up touchdowns lately. 

The wideout has reeled in at least one touchdown in five of his last six games, and Burrow will be looking his way against a Chiefs defense that ranks second-last in the league in DVOA against No. 1 receivers.

Kansas City also ranked second-last in the NFL in red zone defense and surrendered a league-high 33 touchdowns through the air. 

Ja'Marr Chase Prop: Anytime touchdown (+100)

The Bengals' offensive line did a terrific job last week against the Bills, with Burrow eating dirt just once despite the unit missing three regular starters. However, they'll have a tough time duplicating that feat on Sunday against a KC front that finished the regular season with the second-most sacks (55) and fifth-best pressure rate (24.9%) in the league.

The Bengals lost right tackle La'el Collins to a season-ending injury in Week 17 and left tackle Jonah Williams is expected to miss his second-straight game after dislocating his knee cap. 

That makes the Bengals vulnerable against edge rushers like Chiefs rookie George Karlaftis. Karlaftis racked up an incredible 35 quarterback hurries with Purdue in 2021 and was selected by the Chiefs in the first round. 

The defensive end started off slowly in his rookie campaign but picked up steam down the stretch. He was quiet against the Jags last week but had picked up at least half a sack in six of his previous seven games.

George Karlaftis Prop: Player to record a sack (+175 at bet365)

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