By Stella MacLean and Meg Madison
As the Patriots have fallen one game short of the playoffs, New Englanders were forced to watch the Kansas City Chiefs face off against the Philadelphia Eagles in the February 12 Super Bowl LVII. This Super Bowl contains two well-matched teams; both the Chiefs and Eagles went 14-3 in the regular season before advancing through the playoffs to the Super Bowl. The Eagles ran through the San Francisco 49ers with ease to win the National Football Conference (NFC) Championship Game 31-7. The Chiefs had a hard fought battle with the Cincinnati Bengals, winning the American Football Conference (AFC) Championship Game 23-20. While the victor has already been revealed, here is a brief overview of the two teams that battled for the championship.
The Chiefs are heading back to the Super Bowl for the third time in just four years. After beating out the 49ers to claim the Lombardi Trophy and win the Super Bowl in 2020, they fell short of the Buccaneers in 2021 when Tom Brady claimed his seventh and final Super Bowl ring. The Chiefs are led by star quarterback Patrick Mahomes. Mahomes was named the Most Valuable Offensive Player of the Year in the NFL in the 2022-23 season. He led the league in passing yards this year, throwing for an impressive 5,250 yards. The Chiefs have an incredibly high-powered offense and with Mahomes at the helm; they led the league in scoring this season, averaging 28.2 points per game. One of Mahomes favorites targets is tight end Travis Kelce; Kelce is considered to be one of the best tight ends in the league right now and possibly of all time. He has already racked up 21 catches and three touchdowns in the postseason. While the Chiefs have major starpower on their offense and the stats to show for it, they have tended to struggle in the red zone (the area between the 20-yard line and the goal line) defensively. Opponents who made it inside the Chiefs’ 20-yard-line were successful in scoring 67.3% of the time; this stat put them at the second-worst red zone defense in the AFC.
While Philly may not have quite the offensive star power of the Chiefs, they do boast one of the most consistent and well rounded line-ups in the league. The Eagles are led by 24-year-old quarterback Jalen Hurts who is in his third NFL season. Hurts is considered to be a top-five quarterback in the NFL at the moment, even becoming an MVP finalist this season. Not only does Hurts lead this team from the pocket, but he has also proved to be an asset to the Eagles in their run game. Moreover, running back Miles Sanders was fifth in the league in rushing yards this year, rushing for a total of 1,269 yards with 11 touchdowns in the regular season. In the wide receiver position, the Eagles boast a dynamic duo of DeVonta Smith and A.J. Brown; the two have nearly identical stats. This group of well-rounded offensive weapons has been a threat to teams over the course of the season.
As for what the Winsor community has to say, Ms. Reynolds says “I’m rooting for both teams to lose but that’s not possible. I think Philadelphia was a better team over the course of the season but you can’t ignore the fact that the Chiefs and Mahomes show up for big games. If I had to put money down I’d put it on the Chiefs, 38-35.” Ms. Granese agrees and says, “I think the Chiefs will win 30-26!” We look forward to hearing what the Winsor community has to say about the outcome!