Super Bowl LV Preview

Story posted February 6, 2021 in Sports, CommRadio by Alex Rocco

The moment we have been waiting for is finally here, Super Bowl LV.

In this matchup, we see the “GOAT” in Tom Brady and his Tampa Bay Buccaneers go up against the young legend in Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs.

These two teams squared off in Week 12, where the Chiefs came away with a close 27-24 victory. In that game, Mahomes threw for 462 yards and three touchdowns, while star receiver Tyreek Hill hauled in 13 catches for 269 yards and three touchdowns.

That was the regular season, but now we’re on the biggest stage with the lights shining brightest, which favors Brady. Brady has won six rings and this will be his 10th time playing in the Super Bowl.

The Buccaneers’ offense has been great, averaging around 393 yards a game and 31 points, which ranks third in the league.

The offense features a strong passing attack led by Brady, who has proved to everyone that he is not a system quarterback after leaving the New England Patriots this past offseason. Tampa Bay averages 299 passing yards a game, which ranks fourth amongst the league.

The Buccaneers have big-time weapons in Mike Evans, Chris Godwin, Antonio Brown, and Rob Gronkowski. If the Buccaneers want to win, they will need to attack the Chiefs defense through the air.
The Chiefs secondary will not be able to handle all four of these guys.

Look for Chris Godwin to have a big game, as he is the leading receiver so far in the playoffs, racking up 223 yards.

The running game has been the weak point for this offense, as it averages just 95 yards per game, ranking 28th in the league. The duo of Ronald Jones and Leonard Fournette will need to step up to bring home a victory.

The Buccaneers have a top defense in the league. The unit registered 48 sacks and 15 interceptions, which ranks fourth and seventh respectively.

Pass rushers such as Shaq Barrett, Jason Pierre-Paul, and Ndamukong Suh will look to wreak havoc on the Chief’s offensive line, which is battling injuries.

Linebackers such as Devin White and Lavonte David will have a tough task in guarding the game’s best tight end in Travis Kelce. But White and David are still two of the game's brightest stars, so it will be a great matchup to watch.

The Buccaneers’ secondary is the weak spot on their defense. Carlton Davis has been solid this year, but he was guarding Tyreek Hill for the majority of the last game when Hill went for 269 yards. Look for Tampa Bay to double Hill with safeties such as Antoine Winfield Jr.

As for the Chiefs, they are the reigning champs and are looking to repeat.

The Chiefs average 425 yards and 30 points per game, which rank first and sixth in the league respectively.

Kansas City has the best passing offense in the league, led by Patrick Mahomes, who, in just his third season, is playing in his second Super Bowl. Mahomes is on pace to be one of the greatest to ever do it and defeating Brady in the Super Bowl will help his case down the line.

Unlike the Buccaneers passing attack who have four guys who can dominate, the Chiefs have just two: Hill and Kelce. These two combined for 2,692 yards and 26 touchdowns on 192 catches.

Look for the Chiefs to get these two involved early and often. Sammy Watkins, Mecole Hardman, and Demarcus Robinson make up the supporting cast of the passing attack.

The Chiefs have a decent rushing attack, as they average 112 yards per game which ranks 16th in the league. Clyde Edwards-Helaire and Le’Veon Bell will have a hard time against the Buccaneers’ great front seven.

Kansas City has an average defense, as it has recorded 32 sacks and 16 interceptions which ranks 19th and 5th respectively.

The Chiefs will have a hard time getting pressure on Brady, as guys like Tristan Wirfs, Ali Marpet and Donovan Smith have been great this season. Look for Chris Jones and Frank Clark to have big impacts in this game.

The key for the Chiefs will be in the secondary. Tyrann Mathieu has been dominant all season long, but who else will step up?

Look for safety Daniel Sorenson and cornerback L’Jarius Sneed to have big impacts in this game.

The game will take place in Tampa Bay, so the Buccaneers will have home-field advantage with 25,000 fans in attendance.

Despite having home field advantage, Mahomes will dominate and the Chiefs will win back-to-back Super Bowls.

Prediction: Chiefs 37, Buccaneers 30.

Alex Rocco is a freshman majoring in broadcast journalism. You can contact him at afr5646@psu.edu.