Super Bowl 54 is set for plenty of highlights, schematic battles and, hopefully, a Kansas City Chiefs victory! However, the San Francisco 49ers have punched their ticket with a vaunted rushing attack and a stingy defensive unit, highlighted by a fearsome pass rush.
Can the Chiefs overcome the balance of the 49ers and land Andy Reid his first Super Bowl victory? Our staff provides some picks and predictions to answer these questions.
Christopher Tenpenny – Writer
San Francisco is a different animal than the Chiefs previous two opponents. They rush the ball more effectively than the Titans and don’t need to blitz to bring pressure. That being said, a Mahomes lead offense has never scored under 31 in the Playoffs and I don’t believe that will change in the Super Bowl. Can Garoppolo put up 31+ against this Chiefs defense? My guess is probably not. Score prediction: Chiefs 31, 49ers 27
Shawn Dixon – Writer
This will come down to which team has the most stops and I honestly don’t know how the 49ers will stop Mahomes if they play zone. He will eat them alive and if they switch to man, Reid will get the matchup he likes. The Chiefs can stop the 49ers rushing attack and Garoppolo won’t be able to hang with Mahomes in a shootout. I got KC in this one. Score prediction: Chiefs 42, 49ers 17
Britt Zank – Writer
The Kansas City Chiefs will beat the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl 54. The Chiefs defense will slow down the 49ers rushing attack and Patrick Mahomes will be too much for the 49ers defense. Andy Reid stays aggressive and gets his first Super Bowl win. Score prediction: Chiefs 38, 49ers 17.
Chuck Freshour – Writer
The 49ers have a stout defense and great running game. They were dominant in their playoff victories over the Vikings and Packers. The Chiefs beat the Vikings and nearly upset the Packers with Matt Moore at QB. With Mahomes at the helm, KC can score a ton of points in a hurry. And don’t sleep on KC’s defense. Score prediction: Chiefs 38, 49ers 24
Caleb James – Writer
I can see the game being very close in the first half. San Fransisco will come out and try to play smash-mouth football and get their playmakers into space. I think we see Spags and the defense make the same adjustments they’ve used to dominate the second half of games this postseason. The Chiefs will have a big day on offense. If they can match and come up with ways to defeat the 49er pass rush they can do damage in the 49er secondary. Mahomes and company will be too much. Score prediction: Chiefs 35, 49ers 17
Kelly Veneklasen – Writer
Chiefs are clearly operating with the “unfinished business” mentality. There’s a sense the players want this win for Andy Reid and the organization more than themselves. They’ve answered the doubts all season and confidence has strengthened along the way. They get in the way of the 49ers run game and come out on top. Score prediction: Chiefs 27, 49ers 23
Tre Wiggins – Writer
I feel that Kansas City just has way too much firepower for San Francisco. Mahomes will find ways to make plays despite pressure from that incredible front 7, and those receivers will torch the secondary. I feel like Kansas City might even be hot enough to stop a tough 49ers run game. I think Shanahan will still game plan well enough to be competitive, though. Score prediction: Chiefs 35, 49ers 24
Ryan Revoir – Writer
Chiefs are being slept on, especially on the defensive side. That said, the 49ers have a knack for keeping games close. In the end I think it boils down to who has the better QB, and the Chiefs are eons ahead. Score prediction: Chiefs 37, 49ers 34
McKinley Donnor – Editor
The vaunted 49er defense struggled against a high powered Saints offense a few weeks ago and one has to believe that the Chiefs offense is better than the Saints. The Chiefs defense is definitely better than the Saints and will force Jimmy G to throw. This game won’t be close. Score prediction: Chiefs 35, 49ers 13
Keaton Henry – Editor-in-chief
San Francisco’s defense has performed well this season, but one might challenge that the Tennessee defense matched up better with Kansas City. The Chiefs’ ability to force a defense to double team Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce will lead to big day potential for Sammy Watkins and Mecole Hardman. If this occurs, San Francisco will have a long day ahead of them on Sunday. Score prediction: Chiefs 42, 49ers 26