The Biggest Questions Facing the Chiefs and The Eagles in The Super Bowl

The Biggest Questions Facing the Chiefs and The Eagles in The Super Bowl

Super Bowl LVII, which will be played on Sunday, February 12, at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona, will feature the Philadelphia Eagles and the Kansas City Chiefs as the conference champions. The Chiefs defeated Joe Burrow and the Cincinnati Bengals to win the AFC, while the Eagles easily defeated the San Francisco 49ers in the NFC Championship game.

We’re taking an early look at the showdown even though there are still two more weeks until the Super Bowl’s opening play. It’s the top-seeded Chiefs versus the top-seeded Eagles, a matchup of two of the league’s most efficient offenses, two of this season’s MVP finalists, two brothers – with star siblings Travis and Jason Kelce becoming the first siblings to face off in the Super Bowl – and a battle between Chiefs coach Andy Reid and the team that was his home for more than ten years.

While the Chiefs are making their return to the Super Bowl after a one-year break, the Eagles are making their first appearance since defeating the Patriots in 2017. Additionally, the youngest starting quarterback age combination in Super Bowl history will be seen in this year’s contest.

The two-week break before the last game will be helpful for both quarterbacks, who are struggling with injuries. Mahomes, who threw two touchdown passes against the Bengals in the AFC Championship Game, is recovering from a high ankle sprain he suffered in the divisional round, while Hurts is still getting his bearings after suffering a late-season shoulder injury.

This Super Bowl is similar to most of them in that it feels like a real coin flip, and even among the top picks for legal sportsbooks, there isn’t a consensus favorite. Before winning conference championships, both the Eagles and the Chiefs went 14-3, and Jalen Hurts and Patrick Mahomes both displayed great quarterback performances. It seems stupid to bet against Mahomes and Reid in any situation, but Philadelphia has never been a club that has been as consistently well-rounded.

Could the Chiefs Overcome Their Deficiencies?

The Biggest Questions Facing the Chiefs and The Eagles in The Super Bowl

Can the Chiefs maintain their success against the Eagles after overcoming some weaknesses during the regular season and thus far in the playoffs? In the regular season, the Chiefs’ defense was porous in the red zone, allowing a 54.4 QBR (third-worst in the NFL) against opposition quarterbacks. 

In the regular season, they surrendered a score on 67.3% of opposing drives inside the red zone (31st), and they were the only team in the bottom six to enter the playoffs. Philly’s offense also found the end zone on 67.8% of red zone visits, ranking third in the league.

Could the Eagles Defense Return to Its Previous Form?

The Biggest Questions Facing the Chiefs and The Eagles in The Super Bowl

For much of the season, the Eagles were the league leaders in forced turnovers, but they lost steam at the end. Although they recovered three fumbles against the 49ers, they had gone seven games without forcing multiple turnovers going into the NFC Championship Game.

The Cowboys’ Dak Prescott-led offense was their most complete opponent to date on Christmas Eve, and in the Eagles’ 40-34 win, Prescott passed for 347 yards and three touchdowns, demonstrating that it is at least theoretically conceivable to breach what has often been a very tight defense.

Will the Chiefs Be Able to Heal and Recover?

The Biggest Questions Facing the Chiefs and The Eagles in The Super Bowl

It will be crucial that Mahomes has two more weeks to heal his ankle. Despite the fact that the Chiefs will benefit greatly if he returns to full health in two weeks, he deserves a lot of praise for managing to win the AFC Championship Game on one leg. 

Along with cornerback L’Jarius Sneed and linebacker Willie Gay, the Chiefs also lost wide receivers Kadarius Toney, JuJu Smith-Schuster, and Mecole Hardman to injuries on Sunday.

Even at full strength, the Chiefs may not be able to defeat the Eagles; but, if they travel to Arizona with this amount of injuries, Mahomes will need to perform at a never-before-seen level if he hopes to earn a second Super Bowl championship.

Will the Chiefs Be Able to Handle the Pass Rush of The Eagles?

The Biggest Questions Facing the Chiefs and The Eagles in The Super Bowl

Philadelphia had a rather off day as seen by their three sacks in the NFC Championship Game on Sunday. This team averaged 4.1 sacks per game this season, racking up 70 in the regular season and five in the divisional round triumph against the Giants.

Reddick, who was perhaps the most significant acquisition of the offseason, had 16 sacks in the regular season to place second in the league, and he has already added 3.5 more in the first two postseason games. The Eagles were the league leaders in both pass rush wins and pass rush win percentage during the regular season, so even when they don’t get the quarterback to the ground, they still apply pressure on him.

Mahomes should be more able to avoid the rush than he was against Cincinnati on Sunday now that he has had an additional two weeks to rest his damaged right ankle. The offensive line for Kansas City has led the league in protecting the quarterback this season, and it will need to be at its best against the Eagles’ rush, particularly if Mahomes’ ankle is still bothering him.