Despite bet line sways, Bengals’ Joe Burrow says Chiefs should be viewed as the favorite

File photo/Kansas City Star

The Cincinnati Bengals are hoping to repeat a formula that got them to last season’s Super Bowl.

In the 2021 season, the Bengals beat the Chiefs in the regular season and the AFC Championship Game. The Bengals also beat the Chiefs 27-24 last month in Cincinnati.

Sunday’s AFC Championship Game will be the fourth meeting between the teams in 392 days.

Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow was asked Wednesday by reporters if Sunday’s game feels like a divisional matchup.

“It really, really is. We played them twice the last two seasons and really, basically a month apart each time so we know them, they know us. It’s gonna be fun,” Burrow said.

When asked if he gets a kick out of hearing teammates and Bengals fans referring to Arrowhead Stadium as “Burrowhead” because of last year’s win in the AFC title game, Burrow deftly avoided using that name.

Burrow instead explained why he believes the Chiefs should be considered the favorites Sunday, even after the opening line flipped quickly as bettors initially put money on the Bengals.

As of Thursday afternoon, the Chiefs are now favored by 1 point, which apparently should please Burrow .

“We’ve been in these spots,” Burrow said. “We have the experience, we know what team we’re playing. A team that has been to this game the last five seasons, and they’ve all been in that stadium.

“So to me, they’re still the team to beat and then we’re coming for them. But we know it’s gonna be tough. We know it’s going to be hard-fought and we know the kind of players they have on that side.”

Burrow was asked what he learned from last year’s AFC Championship Game that can be used going into Sunday.

“Oh, I don’t know,” Burrow said. We’ve just (got) more experience, more reps. We know the team we’re playing. We’ve played them a bunch, and so I’m sure they’re gonna have some wrinkles off of things that they’ve shown us in the past, whether it was last game or the playoffs last year, because we know that they’re going to be studying all three of these games just like we are.

“So we’re gonna have to be ready for anything.”

The decibel-level of the Arrowhead Stadium crowd has been known to cause headaches for opposing quarterbacks.

But Burrow believes the Bengals will be prepared for the noise, based on last year’s game in Kansas City.

“It was definitely loud,” Burrow said. “But I think we excel in those situations and our communication has been great on the road. It was flawless last week in Buffalo in a really loud, hostile environment and that’s something that we take pride in, is communication being on the same page and going from there.”