As the SBLV approaches, most of the focus will be on the two quarterbacks, the legendary Tom Brady for Tampa and the youngest and possibly best quarterback in the NFL, Patrick Mahomes. This game could be very close, but there are some key injuries that both teams have to overcome.
The Chiefs and Buccaneers previously met at Raymond James Stadium in Week 12, with Kansas City earning a 27-24 win. Mahomes (462 passing yards) and Brady (345) combined for 807 passing yards, the most combined passing yards between two opposing quarterbacks in a single game in 2020. Chiefs wide receiver TYREEK HILL registered 269 receiving yards, and three touchdown catches in the contest and became the third player with at least 200 receiving yards in a single quarter since 1980. The Buccaneers have won each of their past seven games, including the postseason, since Week 12 while Kansas City enters Super Bowl LV having won 12 straight games started by Mahomes, including the postseason.
In seven career postseason starts, Mahomes has a 109.8 passer rating, the highest mark by a quarterback in postseason history (minimum 200 attempts). Mahomes is expected to become the youngest quarterback in NFL history (25 years and 143 days old on the date of Super Bowl LV) to start two Super Bowls, surpassing RUSSELL WILSON, who was 26 years and 64 days old at the time of his second Super Bowl start (SB XLIX).
Kansas City remains the public’s betting favorite (-170) according to Sports Betting Dime for Super Bowl 55. With the Bucs coming in hot as +145, what’s interesting is their predicted total score which gives the edge to Brady & company at 27.3 to 24.5 for Kansas City.
Quarterback TOM BRADY threw three touchdown passes against the Packers and became the fourth quarterback in NFL history to lead multiple franchises to Super Bowl appearances in league history. He is appearing in an NFL-record 10th Super Bowl and holds Super Bowl records for career passing yards (2,838), single-game passing yards (505 in Super Bowl LII), career passing touchdowns (18), and Super Bowl titles (six). Brady is the postseason all-time leader in completions (1,085), passing yards (12,248), passing touchdowns (80), and wins (33).
It’s hard to say if one of the defenses will win the game for their team. I don’t sense that at all. Special teams could be an issue, and I’d give the edge to the Chiefs on that one based on the speed of the return man, Mecole Hardman with an average of 24.7 per kickoff return with a long of 104 yards.
A Key to the Game May Come Down To the Tight Ends
Kelce ranks second among tight ends in postseason annals in receptions (73), receiving yards (859), and touchdown receptions (nine), trailing only Tampa Bay’s ROB GRONKOWSKI (83 receptions for 1,206 yards and 12 touchdowns) in each category.