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The Talon

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The Student News Site of Our Lady of Good Counsel High School

The Talon

The Student News Site of Our Lady of Good Counsel High School

The Talon

Super Bowl LVIII Preview

Are You Ready for Some Football?
Attracting+millions+of+viewers%2C+the+Super+Bowl+never+disappoints+and+Super+Bowl+LVIII+will+be+no+exception.
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Attracting millions of viewers, the Super Bowl never disappoints and Super Bowl LVIII will be no exception.

The Super Bowl, the biggest event in all of sports, is finally here. This year’s big game will be played on Sunday, Feb. 11, 2024, at 6:30 p.m. in Vegas with the 3rd seed AFC Champion Kansas City Chiefs going up against the 1st seed NFC Champion San Francisco 49ers. Let’s see how these Super Bowl LVIII teams stack up.

Super Bowl LIV Rematch

Back in 2020, the Kansas City Chiefs beat the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV 31-20. Post Covid, they are back together again in the Super Bowl this year with pretty different rosters. In 2020, the Chiefs were an offensive-heavy team with a limited defense and San Francisco had a defensive-heavy team with a limited offense. Now, the Chiefs have a pretty strong defense and the 49ers have one of the most dynamic offenses in the league.

AFC Champion Kansas City Chiefs 

The Kansas City Chiefs ended the regular season with an 11-6 record, barely securing the 3rd seed in the playoffs. In the Wild Card Round, the Chiefs pummeled a defeated Miami Dolphins team 26-7. Since it was a Kansas City home game, it was -4 degrees, and the warm weather Miami team could not handle the cold. In the Divisional Round, the Chiefs narrowly squeezed past the Buffalo Bills 27-24 in Buffalo. In 2022, these teams faced off in a controversial overtime matchup which made the NFL change the rules of overtime. The Bill’s kicker Tyler Bass shanked a game-tying kick wide right to clinch the Chiefs AFC Championship spot. In the AFC Championship, the Chiefs played away against the dominant 1st seed Baltimore Ravens. In a surprisingly low-scoring game, the Chiefs beat the Ravens 17-10 with a game-clinching 32-yard pass from Patrick Mahomes to the deep threat Marquez Valdes-Scantling. Kansas City won the Super Bowl last year and is looking to be the first back-to-back winners since the New England Patriots in 2004 and 2005. 

Key Players

Offense:

Patrick Mahomes (QB) – The star of the Chiefs’ offense is without a doubt Patrick Mahomes. So far in the playoffs, he is averaging a monstrous 239 yards per game with 4 touchdowns to no interceptions. Arguably the best quarterback in the league, Mahomes is a constant threat to defenses as he is a master improviser and can turn a sure sack into a 50-yard touchdown within a blink of an eye. It is completely impossible to neutralize Mahomes’s presence on the field so the 49ers will have a big problem on their hands. 

Defense:

Chris Jones (DT) – Chris Jones is undoubtedly the highlight of the Chiefs’ defense. Coming in at a giant 6’6” and 310 lbs, Chris Jones is a wrecking ball that opposing offensive lines can not stop.  Racking up 10.5 sacks as a run-stuffing defensive tackle, Jones is a complete beast and can single-handedly change a game. 

NFC Champion San Francisco 49ers

The San Francisco 49ers ended the regular season with a 12 and 5 record, dominantly securing the 1st seed in the playoffs. Since they got the first seed, they had a bye in the Wild Card Round. In the Divisional Round, they narrowly defeated the Green Bay Packers 24-21 with a game-clinching interception from linebacker Dre Greenlaw. In the NFC Championship Round, the 49ers squeezed past the Detroit Lions due to a risky 4th down call from Dan Campbell and a failed onside kick attempt by the Lions.

Offense:

Christian McCaffrey (RB) – The focal point of the 49ers’ offense is Christian McCaffrey. CMC, the only running back in the MVP race, had over 2,000 all-purpose yards and 21 all-purpose touchdowns. His constant rushing threat makes the linebackers bite and frees up the 49ers’ dangerous deep threats. 

Defense:

Fred Warner (LB) – The leader and most dominant player for the 49ers’ defense is Fred Warner. With 132 total tackles on the season, Warner knows what is going to happen before the ball is even snapped and makes sure his teammates do too. Even though Mahomes’s improvisation skills would give any linebacker a headache, Warner might be able to limit the impact and win the game for his team. 

Key Matchup

Travis Kelce vs George Kittle

It is impossible to talk about these two teams without talking about two of the best tight ends in the league. Most of the Chiefs’ offense comes down to Mahomes and Kelce’s ability to read each other’s minds and know where the other person wants the ball. Kittle plays a big part in the 49ers’ offense in multiple ways. Kittle is an amazing blocker for the 49ers’ power run scheme and is amazing at running after the catch and getting extra yards. Both of these team’s offenses at the Super Bowl will depend on how well these two are doing.

 

Sources:

https://www.statmuse.com/nfl/player/chris-jones-25011 

https://www.statmuse.com/nfl/ask/patrick-mahomes-postseason-stats-2023 

https://www.statmuse.com/nfl/ask/nfl-rushing-leaders 

https://www.statmuse.com/nfl/player/fred-warner-26897 

 https://www.pro-football-reference.com/schools/high_schools.cgi?id=93bc3de9

https://www.espn.com/nfl/team/_/name/kc/kansas-city-chiefs

https://www.espn.com/nfl/superbowl/history/winners 

https://www.espn.com/nfl/team/_/name/sf/san-francisco-49ers 

 https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/news/2024-nfl-playoff-schedule-bracket-afc-and-nfc-championship-dates-times-tv-channel-live-stream/