NFL Postseason: Previewing the AFC Championship Game
The AFC Championship Game is just days away and here is all of the information you need to know.
Who: Kansas City Chiefs at Baltimore Ravens
What: 2023-24 AFC Championship Game
When: Sunday, Jan. 28 at 3:00pm
Where: M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore, MD
How Did We Get Here?
The Baltimore Ravens will host the AFC Championship Game after clinching the No. 1 seed in the conference. After a first-round bye, the Ravens dominated a rookie head coach and quarterback for the Houston Texans, 34-10.
The Chiefs have impressed in a year where many thought they would be out of contention this year but it has been quite the opposite. Kansas City took care of the Miami Dolphins in historically low temperatures, 26-7. The Chiefs then marched into Buffalo for Patrick Mahomes’ first road playoff game and came away with a 27-24 win as the underdog. Now, the Chiefs will be back in the AFC Championship Game for the sixth-consecutive year.
Ravens Rushing Attack vs. Chiefs Run Defense
The Ravens have bolstered one of the most prominent rushing attacks in the league since Jackson came in. The former and eventual league MVP is once again running the ball well. What’s most impressive is Jackson’s decision making and arm talent has improved since signing his new contract.
Jackson rushed for 100 yards and two touchdowns on a cold night against the Texans. In the other conference semifinal, the Chiefs were picked apart early on against the rushing attack of the Buffalo Bills, led by quarterback Josh Allen. There will be a similar attack against the Ravens.
Kansas City was able to adjust and eventual make enough stops to win the game but Baltimore will feature one of the top attacks in the league. If Kansas City starts slow defensively once again, it may be too much to overcome.
Patrick Mahomes & Kansas City vs. Baltimore Defense
The offense for Kansas City has not looked like it has in year’s past but here we are with the best quarterback in the league back in the AFC title game.
In the postseason, the Chiefs have started getting back to what they have in the past. This is leaning on Mahomes and Travis Kelce along with the ground game, led by Isiah Pacheco. The wide receivers for Kansas City have been ineffective all season long.
Now, the team will be going up against arguably one of the best defenses in football. Mike MacDonald has led an elite defense that has shut down the best teams in the league all season. On its home field, the Ravens have been a huge force on both sides of the ball. If the defense plays like it has all season, Baltimore will be able to get back on top early.
Final Prediction: Ravens 27, Chiefs 21
For a complete breakdown of the upcoming AFC Championship Game, check out our FFSN NFL podcast doing just that in the player below: