Four teams became two after an action-packed championship Sunday that saw the Chiefs and Buccaneers win their respective conference championships and advance to Super Bowl LV, validating our Best Bet To Win Super Bowl LV picks from November of last year.
Super Bowl LV
Favorite: Kansas City Chiefs (-170)
Underdog: Tampa Bay Buccaneers (+150)
Line: Chiefs -3 / Buccaneers +3
Over/Under: 56.5 points
Here’s where the final two NFL teams stand ahead of Super Bowl LV in Tampa Bay:
1. Kansas City Chiefs (14-2)
Super Bowl Odds: -170
Previous Rank: 2
After a 9-0 Bills scoring run to open the AFC Championship game, the Kansas City Chiefs showed why they are the reigning Super Bowl champs, piling on 38 points to Buffalo’s six and advancing to Super Bowl LV with a 38-24 victory.
Patrick Mahomes was his usual self after returning from concussion, throwing for 325 yards and three touchdowns, finding Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce for 172 and 118 yards respectively. Darrel Williams and Clyde Edwards-Helaire rounded out the complete offensive performance, each rushing for a first half touchdown while Kansas City’s defense recorded four sacks and an interception in what was a near perfect game from Andy Reid’s men.
It was not all smooth sailing for Kansas City with left tackle Eric Fisher leaving the field with an apparent Achilles injury in the fourth quarter. The Chiefs already depleted offensive line will be under immense pressure against Tampa Bay, who are fresh off a five sack performance against Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship game. That pressure will undoubtedly escalate if Fisher isn’t available for Super Bowl LV.
When the two sides last met in Week 12, Kansas City opened up the game with a 17-0 run before the the Bucs pulled within three points in the fourth quarter thanks to a three touchdown, 345 yard performance from Tom Brady.
Ultimately, Patrick Mahomes’ three touchdowns and 462 yards (three TD’s and 269 yards to Tyreek Hill alone) sealed the victory, 27-24. It took an all-time Mahomes/Hill performance to beat the Bucs in Tampa earlier in the season and Kansas City may require more of the same when the two sides return to Tampa Bay for Super Bowl LV.
— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) January 25, 2021
2. Tampa Bay Buccaneers (11-5)
Super Bowl Odds: +150
Previous Rank: 4
Appearing in his 14th conference championship game, 43 year old Tom Brady continues to defy the odds, now advancing to his 10th Super Bowl.
Just a few minutes into the third quarter of the NFC Championship game, Packers running back Aaron Jones fumbled, giving Tampa Bay the ball at Green Bay’s 8-yard line. Brady immediately turned the turnover into his third touchdown, and the Bucs were up 28-10. However, after an almost flawless first half from the six time Super Bowl champ, three consecutive Tampa Bay drives ended with Brady interceptions, allowing the Packers to cut the margin back to 28-23.
With three time outs and the two minute warning remaining, Green Bay controversially elected to kick a field goal from inside the red zone after Tampa Bay’s defence forced them to fourth and goal. After giving Tom Brady the ball up 31-26, the Bucs successfully burnt out the clock to advance to their first Super Bowl appearance since 2002.
Green Bay had more total yards, first downs, time in possession and won the turnover battle, however the Buccaneers defense made big plays at crucial moments to give Tom Brady superior field position. Despite his three interceptions in the second half, Brady was integral to Tampa Bay’s win on Sunday and will need to be at his best when coming up against the Chiefs in Super Bowl LV, looking for his seventh Super Bowl championship.
The Buccaneers are going to be the first team in the Super Bowl era to play in a home Super Bowl and will be looking to improve on their 24-27 loss when the two teams last met at Raymond Jones Stadium.
GOAT TALK 🗣🐐
We got footage of Tom Brady mic’d up against the Packers.
— B/R Gridiron (@brgridiron) January 26, 2021
*Odds correct at time of publication, courtesy of Bet365
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Image by: Kim Klement