Eagles Versus Chiefs May Attract More Attention than Crazy Commercials
Too many times, the best part of Super Bowls past, has been the commercials and the halftime shows.
This year’s Super Bowl LVII between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Philadelphia Eagles on Feb. 12 should break that trend and be one of the best ever played.
Both of these teams are loaded with talent and a high velocity offense, capped off by outstanding defenses. The Chiefs come into the mix chasing their second championship in the last four years and the Philadelphia Eagles pursuing their second title in the last six years. We’re going to see the top seeds in the AFC and NFC square off.
The match-up couldn’t be set up better, as far as strengths and weakness of these teams go. The Chiefs are ranked the number five offense, number five defense, and have the number three offensive line, according to Pro Football Focus. The Eagles have the number one defense, number seven offense, and the number one offensive line.
All that being said, let’s look at some of the factors that could determine the winner. For the Chiefs, injuries has been a concern. Having healthy receivers, and having Quarterback Patrick Mahomes high ankle sprain well enough that he can scramble will be key. The Chiefs saw wide receivers Kadarius Toney, JuJu Smith-Schuster, and Mecole Hardman all leave Sunday’s AFC Championship game with injuries, as well as Cornerback L’Jarius Sneed and Linebacker Willie Gay.
A healthy Mahomes can carry his team with just himself and Tight End, Travis Kelce for the most part, but whether it can it counter the Eagles pass rush and stout secondary is another story.
Mahomes will have his work cut out for him even with a healthy receiver corp. The Eagles’ secondary is the best in the NFL. James Bradberry, C.J. Gardner, and Darius Slay are ranked number one in forced incompletions, and interceptions, and number two in not allowing passes over fifteen-yards.
Another concern for Mahomes is the Eagles’ pass rush. The Eagles and Chiefs ranked 1-2 in sacks during the regular season, with Philly recording 70 quarterback takedowns, and Kansas City registering 55.
The Eagles have avoided the injury bug for the most part, although Quarterback Jalen Hurts did miss two games earlier in the season with a right shoulder sprain. He seemed to be well healed in NFC Championship game against the San Francisco Forty-Niners.
The Eagles love to run the ball. The Eagles set the NFL record for the most rushing touchdowns in a season with 39 and Philadelphia has seven rushing touchdowns in two postseason games while the rest of the NFL playoff teams have seven rushing touchdowns combined. Hurts has 15 of those rushing touchdowns by the Eagles, the most by any quarterback in a season in league history. Hurts and Running Back, Miles Sanders are the first pair of teammates to record 13-plus rushing touchdowns in a season.
The Eagle run game is a major problem for the Chiefs. Not only is it very effective, it keeps the Chief’s offense on the bench. Ya’ can’t score points if you don’t have the ball. And Philly is also the best in the NFL at scoring touchdowns on their first possession.
Who is going to Disneyland this year?
While stats tell a story, they don’t always tell the future. The human factor is what determines an outcome as often or more than the stats. We’ve all heard the common expressions and cliches: “They were more hungry,” and “They wanted it more.” There is much truth in those sayings. Football is a game of emotion as well as tactics. The coaches do the thinking and the players execute the plan. In both cases with these teams, when the plan breaks down the human factor takes over. Both of these quarterbacks have the ability to add-lib when things don’t go as planned.
Philly, it seems to me, relies mainly on brute force, while the Chiefs are sneaky/shifty with their play selection. The Chiefs like to fool you, while the Eagles like to beat you with a big stick. My feeling is that this game will be close at the end and that’s where the human factor will decide who takes home the Lombardi Trophy.
TMJ Pick: It’s going to come down to the last two-minutes. The Eagles are driving for the winning touchdown, when Defensive Tackle Chris Jones strip-sacks Hurts, setting up the game winning field goal for the Chiefs. Chiefs win by a score of 27-24.