Tremendous Bowl Sunday is lastly upon us. After 20 weeks of high-octane soccer, simply two groups stay within the race for the Lombardi Trophy. The Kansas Metropolis Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers descend upon Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas for Tremendous Bowl LVIII. A rematch of Tremendous Bowl LIV, can the Chiefs develop into the primary back-to-back champions since 2004? Or will the 49ers carry the Lombardi for the primary time since 1995? Let’s make the case for each groups.
Kansas Metropolis Chiefs (Taylor’s Model)
BALTIMORE, MD – JANUARY 28: Patrick Mahomes #15 of the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs throws the ball through the AFC Championship NFL soccer recreation in opposition to the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Financial institution Stadium on January 28, 2024 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Picture by Perry Knotts/Getty Pictures)
For the fourth time within the seven years since drafting Patrick Mahomes, the Chiefs are within the Tremendous Bowl. The NFL’s modern synonym for achievement, KC is seeking to really set up itself as a dynasty. Nonetheless, the journey to develop into the primary back-to-back champions because the ’04 Pats has been tougher than in earlier years. Going 11-6, the Chiefs have been ninth in offensive yardage and fifteenth in scoring. The workforce continued to run by means of the established battery of Mahomes and Travis Kelce (23% of Mahomes passing yards, focused 20% of the time). Nonetheless, the Chiefs additionally discovered a draft gem in Rashee Rice (Drafted at #55, 938 yards). Moreover, sophomore again Isiah Pacheco was practically a 1000-yard working again.
Nonetheless, the true energy of this workforce was its protection. Justin Reid and Trent McDuffie (175 tackles between them) prowled downfield relentlessly. In the meantime, Chris Jones and George Karlaftis (21 sacks mixed) made opposing quarterbacks stay in worry for 60 minutes every week. Total, the defensive unit was second in yards allowed and factors allowed. This has continued into the postseason, the place three high-scoring offenses (Miami, Buffalo, Baltimore) have all been suffocated. This has been particularly vital within the latter two video games, the place the offense has struggled to run away with video games.
In fact, we should additionally point out Taylor Swift, the workforce’s casual good luck attraction after making her relationship with Travis Kelce public in Week 3. Nonetheless, Swift will possible be absent from Vegas resulting from a quartet of Eras Tour reveals in Tokyo ending the day earlier than the Tremendous Bowl.
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If You are Going To (The) San Francisco (49ers)…
SANTA CLARA, CA – JANUARY 28: Christian McCaffrey #23 of the San Francisco 49ers rushes through the NFC Championship recreation in opposition to the Detroit Lions at Levi’s Stadium on January 28, 2024 in Santa Clara, California. The 49ers defeated the Lions 34-31. (Picture by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Pictures)
The San Francisco 49ers return to the Tremendous Bowl for the primary time since 2020 once they misplaced to Kansas Metropolis. A 12-5 workforce within the common season, the Niners have been 2nd in offensive yardage and third in scoring. Brock Purdy continued to show that draft place means nothing, throwing for over 4200 yards and 31 touchdowns. The secret for San Francisco is overwhelming power. That they had two 1000-yard receivers in Brandon Aiyuk and George Kittle. Add within the league’s finest rusher Christian McCaffrey (1459 yards, 14 touchdowns) and also you get an offense that merely can’t be stopped.
The protection additionally shone within the Bay. ninth in yards allowed and third in factors allowed is what you’d anticipate from a five-loss workforce however remains to be spectacular nonetheless. All of it begins with the line of defense itself. Linebacking duo Fred Warner and Dre Greenlaw mixed for 252 tackles whereas the sting wasn’t any safer with 10.5 sacks from Nick Bosa. To not say the defensive backs are any much less spectacular, but it surely’s much less of a priority when the ball typically does not get previous the road of scrimmage.
Nonetheless, are the 49ers merely ready to choke? Each of their playoff wins have been by a area objective. Towards the Lions within the Convention championship, they wanted to make the biggest comeback in NFC Championship historical past to erase a 17-point halftime deficit. Regardless of their dominance, regardless of the common season accolades, the 49ers have been unable to construct a lead and maintain it on the subject of the playoffs.
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Chiefs-49ers: Who Wins?
SANTA CLARA, CA – JANUARY 28: Brock Purdy #13 of the San Francisco 49ers scrambles out of the pocket through the third quarter of the NFC Championship NFL soccer recreation in opposition to the Detroit Lions at Levi’s Stadium on January 28, 2024 in Santa Clara, California. (Picture by Kevin Sabitus/Getty Pictures)
Tremendous Bowl LVIII is broadly anticipated to return all the way down to the wire. The Niners enter as -1.5 favorites. Nonetheless, the over/underneath is ready at a surprisingly beneficiant 47.5. The matchup options two of the toughest groups to attain on within the league this season. which means yards and factors might be at a premium. It’s also the place the 49ers’ edge on this recreation emerges from.
The Chiefs offense lives and dies with Patrick Mahomes. Particularly with the Warner-Greenlaw tandem shutting down the run, the Chiefs want Mahomes connecting by means of the air. In the meantime, Brock Purdy does not want to hold the 49ers. If Reid and McDuffie create an excessive amount of of a no-fly zone, Purdy can lean on CMC’s unstoppable legs. If the Chiefs lean onerous into stopping McCaffery, there are two 1000-yard receivers for Purdy to attach with.
Prediction: San Francisco 49ers 23 – 20 Kansas Metropolis Chiefs. As talked about, that is possible not going to be a recreation the place touchdowns are traded backwards and forwards for 60 minutes. This can be a recreation that might be gained on protection. With touchdowns at a premium, the 49ers go up three late within the fourth however are in a position to deny Mahomes his signature game-winning drive with a last-stand defensive effort. However tell us the way you suppose the sport will play out within the feedback.
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