The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

Sidelines: Super Bowl LVIII Preview

The 49ers mounted an epic comeback over the Lions in the NFC conference championship game. (Photo courtesy of The Phinsider)

Another Super Bowl is upon us, and in a repeat of 2020, the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers will face off this Sunday. The 49ers have been the favorite to represent the NFC all year, while the reigning champs are almost a shock to be here.

The conference championship games were as opposite as any games could be. The AFC Championship was a battle of great defense, with Baltimore’s three turnovers proving too much as Kansas City came out on top.

On the other hand, the NFC championship was looking to be a blowout, as Detroit was up 24-7 at halftime. However, San Francisco would not go down without a fight, as the 49ers scored 27 unanswered points in the second half to overcome the Cinderella-run Lions.

This game has very crucial meanings to both franchises.

For the 49ers, this could be one of the last chances they have to win a Super Bowl with this roster. In 2025, Brock Purdy, Christian McCaffrey and Deebo Samuel will all enter free agency. It is going to be difficult for San Francisco to keep all three offensive stars and without even one, the offense may not be the same. 

If the Niners win this game, then there may be more incentive for the trio to stay in Santa Clara. This could possibly lead to a flip in the organization to look like the San Fran of old. If they lose this game, however, the house may come crashing down on itself as the front office could struggle to retain their star players in crucial upcoming seasons.

The Chiefs are on the brink of securing dynasty status and becoming one of the best franchises in history. Patrick Mahomes would also be inching closer to Tom Brady in the GOAT conversation if he won his third Super Bowl in only his sixth season as a starter.

Head coach Andy Reid has already secured a spot in Canton, but one more Super Bowl will propel him to the likes of coaches like Bill Walsh, Don Shula and even Bill Belichick. If the Chiefs lose, then the dynasty may show it is on the comedown. This season was below standard for how the Chiefs have played the past few years and a loss could show that this subpar play may continue to occur.

This goes to say that Kansas City should not be taken lightly in this game. The Chiefs’ defense is one of the best and that was shown in the conference championship. Led by tackle Chris Jones and cornerback Trent McDuffie — both named first-team all-pro — the defense is ready to show up against this 49er offense.

The struggle for the Chiefs, however, will be their offense, which did take a big step this past week with Travis Kelce going over 100 yards for only the third time this year. You should never count out Patrick Mahomes either.

The 49ers are the betting favorites going into this game, but not by much. They have shown cracks the past few weeks with comebacks in both of their playoff games. This team is still a juggernaut on both offense and defense and proved that when they are rolling, they do it with force. If the Niners play to their full ability, no team in this league can stop them.

The Super Bowl Halftime Show will be headlined by Usher, who made a guest appearance with the Black Eyed Peas back in Super Bowl XLV. This will also be the first Super Bowl in Allegiant Stadium and the first one in Las Vegas.

My Prediction: The 49ers will win if they play to their full potential, but the world has learned not to bet against Patrick Mahomes. If I had to make a pick, it would be the 49ers.

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