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The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

The Oldest College Weekly in America. Founded 1868.

The Colgate Maroon-News

Chiefs, 49ers Meet Again at the Swiftly Approaching Super Bowl

Chiefs%2C+49ers+Meet+Again+at+the+Swiftly+Approaching+Super+Bowl
AP Photo / Godofredo A. Vásquez

After a long regular season in the NFL, Super Bowl 58 (LVIII) is finally upon us. The Kansas City Chiefs are set to take on the San Francisco 49ers in Las Vegas, Nev. on Feb. 11. These two teams are certainly familiar with each other, having met in the Super Bowl just four years ago, with the Chiefs emerging victorious by a score of 31-20. The 49ers will no doubt be looking to redeem themselves, while the Chiefs are aiming to establish themselves as a true dynasty — this would be their third Super Bowl in the last five years.

It’s been an interesting year for the Chiefs, who have taken on a new identity compared to the last five years with Patrick Mahomes under center. This year it’s the defense leading the way. All-Pro’s Chris Jones and Trent McDuffie have spearheaded a unit that ranks second in the league in points against, while the offense was only ranked 15th. Patrick Mahomes has been great, as always, but he’s only had two reliable receiving options in star tight end Travis Kelce and rookie wide receiver Rashee Rice. The Chiefs have combined for 44 drops this year, which is the most in the league, according to Sports Reference. While Kelce has shown signs of his age this year, finishing under 1000 receiving yards for the first time since 2015, he has stepped up during the playoffs, accumulating 262 yards and three touchdowns across the Chiefs’ three victories.

The 49ers, on the other hand, have an incredible team from top to bottom. They ranked third in points scored and points allowed across the 2023 season. Their offense is led by the NFL’s leading rusher, Christian McCaffrey, as well as three premier pass catchers in tight end George Kittle and wide receivers Brandon Aiyuk and Deebo Samuel. These four weapons have made it easy for quarterback Brock Purdy, the very last pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, to lead this offense to historic levels of efficiency. At the heart of San Francisco’s defense is linebacker Fred Warner, who was once again named a First Team All-Pro this year. Warner and star defensive linemen Nick Bosa and Javon Hargrave make San Francisco one of the most difficult teams to run the ball against, as they rank third in rushing yards allowed throughout the season.

As for how these teams got here, the Chiefs were the number three seed in the AFC. They dispatched the Miami Dolphins with ease before winning a nail-biter against the Buffalo Bills after kicker Tyler Bass missed a 44-yard field goal to tie the game with less than two minutes to go. They then kept the high-flying Ravens in check with a 17-10 victory in the AFC Championship Game. The 49ers, on the other hand, had the number one seed in the NFC, giving them a first-round bye. That being said, neither game was easy for them. The 49ers were losing heading into the fourth quarter against the Green Bay Packers, but managed to pull out a 24-21 victory after Packers quarterback Jordan Love threw a bad interception on the final drive of the game. In the NFC Championship, the San Francisco team went down 24-7 against the Detroit Lions, yet were able to claw back and score 27 unanswered points, punching their ticket to the Super Bowl by a score of 34-31.

This game is shaping up to be a good one, with the 49ers favored by just two points. I truly think this one could go either way. The Chiefs’ defense looked vulnerable against the Bills, who relied on short passing and running the ball. On the other hand, the Ravens’ offense struggled as they leaned on an aerial attack. I think if the 49ers can establish the run early and lean on their best player in McCaffrey, they’ll be able to control the tempo of this game. On the flip side, while Travis Kelce is a difficult matchup for anyone, there might not be a better linebacker in coverage than the aforementioned Fred Warner. I believe this Super Bowl is going to be a very close game, and while it’s tough to bet against Patrick Mahomes, I predict the 49ers to win this one by a score of 24-20.

 

Sports Editors’ Picks:

Caroline Michaud: 27-24 49ers

Ian Gisiger: 27-24 Chiefs

Jack Donovan: 24-20 49ers

Richie Rosen: 31-17 Chiefs

Samantha Wotring: 28-21 49ers

 

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About the Contributor
Jack Donovan, Assistant Sports Editor
Jack Donovan is a senior from Skaneateles, NY concentrating in mathematical economics. He has previously served as a contributing writer for the Sports section. On campus, Jack is involved as a videographer for Colgate's football team.

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    J M DavisFeb 10, 2024 at 11:40 pm

    Great article! Well written, and well reasoned.

    This Colgate Grandma from CA says GO NINERS!!!

    Reply