How Do AFC Third Seeds Perform in NFL Playoffs?

How Do AFC Third Seeds Perform in NFL Playoffs?
Fact Checked by Michael Peters

The defending Super Bowl champs officially know what their road to a repeat will entail, starting with a Saturday evening showdown against the 11-6 Miami Dolphins inside Arrowhead Stadium.

Kansas City was able to secure the AFC’s No. 3 seed in the postseason by going 11-6 and finishing ahead of the 10-7 Houston Texans, who were the fourth and final division winner this season.

With the Chiefs Super Bowl odds at +1000 to open the postseason, they will look to become the first champ to repeat since New England did so in 2004.

Utilizing NFL.com, BetKansas.com is aiding your Kansas sports betting by looking at how teams played in the NFL playoffs as the No. 3 seed in the AFC since the 2000-01 season. The NFL Playoffs altered to include a seventh seed in 2020-21, which slightly alters the data.

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Playoff Performance of AFC No. 3 Seeds

SituationNumber of Teams Percentage
Winning Wild Card Round13 of 2356.5%
Winning Divisional Round6 of 2326.1%
Winning Conference Championship1 of 234.3%
Winning Super Bowl1 of 234.3%

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Can Chiefs Add to AFC No. 3 Seed Success?

Surprisingly, the No. 3 seed in the AFC has had little success in the postseason this century, with only one Super Bowl champ among the group.

Of the 23 teams that have been a three seed in the AFC bracket, 13 (56.5%) went on to win their Wild Card contest, while six of those (26.1%) advanced past the AFC Divisional round. Only one team that entered the AFC bracket as the three seed made it to the Super Bowl (or won it all), that being the 2007 Indianapolis Colts, who defeated the Chicago Bears, 29-17, in Super Bowl XLI.

This year, oddsmakers from ESPN BET Kansas list the Chiefs as a 3.5-point favorite to beat the Dolphins in Saturday night’s Wild Card round, with a -185 moneyline.

Overall, Kansas City has the fifth best Super Bowl odds on Kansas sportsbook apps, ranking behind San Francisco (+225), Baltimore (+325), Buffalo (+600) and Dallas (+750). As far as AFC odds are concerned, ESPN BET Kansas lists Andy Reid’s team at +500 to win the conference, ranking third behind the Ravens (+130) and Bills (+260).

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Author

Christopher Boan is a lead writer at BetKansas.com specializing in covering state issues. He covered sports and sports betting in Arizona for more than seven years.

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