Super Bowl LIV Preview and Prediction

Super Bowl LIV

Well, that was not a great weekend of football.  The Chiefs handily took care of the Titans, and the 49ers easily disposed of the Packers.  But what a Super Bowl that sets up!  One of the best offenses in the NFL versus one of the best defenses in the NFL.  Should be a great matchup.  If you don’t believe me, ask Vegas.  I have seen anywhere between 49ers -1 and Chiefs -1 …as close as it gets.  But who will win?

If you’re using my picking prowess from this postseason (below), I can guarantee you there is a 50% chance I will get the Super Bowl correct.  No doubt about it.

Wild Card Weekend picks – 2-2
Divisional Weekend picks – 2-2
Championship Weekend picks - 1-1

Let’s see how they matchup:

Kansas City Chiefs v San Francisco 49ers
Jimmy Garoppolo had a very solid season, with 27 TDs and almost 4,000 yards.  But he has thrown for just 208 yards in his 2 Playoff games this season (just 8 attempts in the Packers game).  Not his fault, they simply didn’t need him to throw in those games.  They do have some dangerous WRs in Deebo Samuel and Emmanuel Sanders, and have arguably the best TE on the planet in George Kittle.  The weapons are there if necessary.  As far as the RB position, Raheem Mostert was absolutely outstanding against the Packers this past weekend.  220 yards, 4 TDs.  Will the combination of him, Matt Breida, and Tevin Coleman (if healthy) be able to have a game like that again?  They were the 2nd best rushing team in the NFL this season, so I think the answer is yes.  For the Chiefs, I think everyone knows what they’re capable of.  Whatever they lack in the running game, Patrick Mahomes makes up for.  He had a great regular season, and has been even better in the Playoffs.  615 yards, 8 TDs, 0 INTs.  With him throwing to Tyreek Hill, Sammy Watkins, and Travis Kelce, this team can score points.  Um, a lot of them.  And fast.  Advantage – Chiefs

The Chiefs defense was one of the more improved units in the NFL this season.  Went from 24th in 2018, to 7th in 2019.  But they have had their struggles in the postseason, giving up 31 to the Texans and 24 to the Titans.  Not horrible, but not great.  The 49ers on the other hand, were good in the regular season, and even better in the Playoffs.  Held the Vikings to just 10 points, and held Aaron Rodgers and the Packers to just 20 points (13 of which were in the 4th quarter).  They have looked outstanding.  If they can put as much pressure on Mahomes as they did on Rodgers, they have a good shot to win.  Advantage – 49ers

Special Teams
As noted in my other previews, kickoff and punt returns are a crapshoot.  In this matchup, I will say the same about the punters (Dustin Colquitt and Mitch Wishnowsky both average 44 yards per punt).  Only real debate here is the Kicker.  And it’s a tough call.  Robbie Gould has had a great career (87% made FGs), but had a rough season, hitting just 74% of his attempts.  His experience could be a factor though.  9 career Playoff games…27 for 27 XPs, and 13 for 13 FGs.  He’s somewhat proven.  On the other side, Harrison Butker has been one of the more accurate Kickers since coming into the NFL in 2017 (90% Field Goals), and had another great season in 2019 (90%).  So how do you pick who has the advantage here?  You don’t.  Advantage – Push

This one is tough.  Although 49ers Kyle Shanahan is in just his 3rd year as a Head Coach, he has coached in the Super Bowl before (Offensive Coordinator for Falcons in Super Bowl LI (where they blew a 25 point lead)).  After going 10-22 his first 2 seasons, he led the 49ers to a 13-3 record in 2019.  Quick rebuild and turnaround.  Chiefs Andy Reid is coaching in his 15th post-season, 6th with Kansas City.  He has 14 Playoff wins, has led his teams to 7 Championship Games (5 with Eagles, 2 with Chiefs), and is now coaching in his 2nd Super Bowl.  He has also had his share of post-season struggles.  14 losses, several of which he was coaching the better team .  Will this finally be the year he wins his Super Bowl?  It certainly might be.  That said, I think Shanahan, although a lot younger and more inexperienced, is the better coach right now.  Advantage – 49ers

Both teams are coming into the Super Bowl with a lot of momentum.  Obviously.  And both teams have taken significantly different routes to get there.  The Chiefs overcame a 24-0 deficit to stomp the Texans 51-31, then overcame 2 separate 10 point deficits to beat the Titans 35-22.  The 49ers on the other hand, have completely dominated both of their games, beating the Vikings 27-10 and beating the Packers 37-20.  Hard to say the Chiefs, who have averaged 43 points per game in these Playoffs don’t have the most momentum…but the 49ers have looked outstanding on both sides of the ball.  All 60 minutes of both games.  The look unstoppable right now.  Advantage – 49ers

Despite the 49ers having the advantage in nearly everything I covered above, the Chiefs have one thing that the 49ers don’t.  Patrick Mahomes.  He is simply too good, and can beat you in too many ways.  I think this will finally be Andy Reid’s 1st Super Bowl Title.  And well deserved.  PICK – Kansas City Chiefs

Now, tell me what you think!!!

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