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The Student News Site of Rock Bridge High School

Bearing News

The Student News Site of Rock Bridge High School

Bearing News

Bearing News Sports Presents: Preview to the 2024 Super Bowl

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Image courtesy of Pro Football Network

With the National Football League (NFL) post-season in its final stretch, fans across the U.S. have time to reflect on their favorite teams’ seasons, some with disappointment while others look to hopeful futures. With the Super Bowl looming ahead, two fan bases have one final game to look forward to before a busy offseason enter the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers.

Heading into the regular season, the 49ers were predicted to win their division under the leadership of head coach Kyle Shanahan and quarterback Brock Purdy. Not only did the team succeed in winning their division, but they also clinched the number one seed and its accompanying bye week going into the postseason. While every team in the NFL has a unique story, the 49ers were expected to have another stout defense and all the dynamic skill positions necessary for a successful offense. Their biggest question mark going into the regular season was at the quarterback position. 

Purdy left the National Football Conference (NFC) Championship game in 2023 with an injured elbow, which he received surgery for during the off-season. Picked last during the 2022 NFL draft, very few people had high expectations for Purdy, and throughout the regular season, despite putting up 4,280 air yards and 31 touchdowns to 11 interceptions, many still doubted his abilities going into the playoffs. In both the divisional and championship rounds of the playoffs, however, Purdy led his team down the field for game winning drives, defeating first the Green Bay Packers and the Detroit Lions, sending the 49ers to the SuperBowl for the first time since their defeat in 2019;A defeat that came at the hands of the Kansas City Chiefs. 

Like the 49ers, the Chiefs were expected to perform well during the 2023 season, with some sources predicting them to hold the best record in the American Football Conference (AFC). While they succeeded in winning their division and clinching the three-seed in the AFC, the reigning SuperBowl champions took several steps back on offense, dropping from the number one scoring offense in the NFL in 2022, to tenth in 2023. Similarly, Patrick Mahomes posted the worst stat line since his tenure as a starter, logging 4,183 air yards and 27 touchdowns to 14 interceptions.

Even with these struggles, the biggest story line for the Chiefs seemed to be the emergence of a relationship between future hall-of-fame tight end Travis Kelce and Pop megastar Taylor Swift. While Swift has been the subject of much criticism for her presence at Chiefs’ games, it has done little to deter the team from heading back to the SuperBowl for the fourth time in five years. Only this time, the Chiefs path to victory was away from Arrowhead Stadium. Through a second-ranked defense and the efficiency of a Mahomes-led offense, the Chiefs defeated both Buffalo and Baltimore at their home stadiums, giving them the first road playoff appearances and wins since Mahomes took over as a starting quarterback.

The betting line for the NFL’s biggest game of the year put San Francisco as two point favorites over the reigning champions. However, the Chiefs were three and a half point underdogs against both the Buffalo Bills and Baltimore Ravens in their previous two playoff appearances. The Superbowl will be held at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, which, while ruled as a neutral site, is far closer to San Francisco than Kansas City. With less than a week left until the Superbowl, injury updates and new storylines could potentially shift the spread, but barring a major update from either team, this game is certain to be a rematch for the ages.

 

What are your predictions for the Super Bowl? Let us know in the comments below.

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About the Contributor
Josiah Anderson, Co-Editor-in-Chief
Senior Josiah Anderson is the co-editor-in-chief of Bearing News and the Sports Editor. He is also the announcer for RBHS Baseball. In his free time, Josiah likes to read, write, watch the Cardinals and play disc golf.

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