Super Bowl LVII Preview
When- February 12, 5:30 PM, FOX
Where- State Farm Stadium, Glendale, AZ
Kansas City- 1 Seed (AFC West)
Rating- 37.9 (4 out of 32)
Strength of Schedule- 24 out of 32
Philadelphia- 1 Seed (NFC East)
Rating- 42.18 (1 out of 32)
Strength of Schedule- 13 out of 32
Why Kansas City will win- Experience. This is the Chiefs’ third Super Bowl appearance in the past four seasons. Andy Reid will be making his fourth appearance in the Super Bowl as a head coach. The Eagles, on the other hand, have a head coach and much of the roster making their first trip to the Big Game. Kansas City’s O-line has been a major strength all season ranking third in the NFL in sacks allowed. The unit should be able to neutralize the Eagles’ dominant pass rush which has registered 8 sacks in 2 playoff games so far. QB Patrick Mahomes completed 29-43 passes for 326 yards and 2 TD’s against the Bengals despite still clearly bothered by an ankle sprain. The 2 weeks off should give him plenty of time to rest and heal the ankle heading into the matchup. Defensively, Kansas City has been superb so far this postseason. Coordinator Steve Spagnuolo put together a masterful game plan against Cincinnati sacking QB Joe Burrow 5 times and holding running backs Joe Mixon and Samaje Perine to a combined 41 yards rushing.
Why Philadelphia will win- The Eagles’ offense is flying high scoring 69 points in 2 postseason games so far. The unit put up 148 total rushing yards along with 4 rushing TD’s against the league’s top rush defense in the 49ers. Although QB Jalen Hurts only passed for 121 yards against San Francisco he managed to avoid costly mistakes and could be primed for a big day against a young and vulnerable Kansas City secondary. After facing 2 of the league’s worst pass rushes in Jacksonville and Cincinnati, the Chiefs’ offense will get a much tougher test against Philadelphia’s defense led by LB Haason Reddick who has 19.5 sacks on the year. If Mahomes’ ankle isn’t fully healthy by game time look for coordinator Jonathan Gannon to dial up the pressure.
Matchup to Watch- Philadelphia’s rushing attack against Kansas City’s run defense. The Chiefs shut down Mixon and Perine in the AFC Championship Game and have been solid against the run all year allowing just 107 yards per game (8th in the NFL). The Eagles, however, have a more potent rushing attack along with a 3 Pro Bowl offensive linemen. If the offense has success running the ball it will put a lot of pressure on the young Chiefs secondary to stop the talented trio of WR’s A.J. Brown, DeVonta Smith, and TE Dallas Goedert.
Eye Test Analytics Predicted Outcome- Philadelphia by 4.28 points