Last week: 2-0
This week: 1-0
Chiefs over Buccaneers
Well, here we are yet again, the Chiefs are in the Super Bowl. If you read my review of Tampa Bay it should be little surprise that I’m picking the Chiefs. This is one of the biggest Super Bowl mismatches in recent memory. Tampa Bay is relatively weak as far as Super Bowl teams are concerned, while the Chiefs should be considered one of the best teams in NFL history. Not that this means the Chiefs are guaranteed to win (you could have written the same thing about the Patriots and Giants in 2007) but it does mean the Chiefs have no excuse not to win.
People are making a lot out of the Chiefs’ injuries along the offensive line, but the only difference from our previous game against Tampa Bay is Fisher. While he is an important part of the line it’s not going to suddenly shift the balance in favor of the Tampa Bay defense, especially when it’s offset by Watkins’ likely return. Is it possible that the Tampa defensive line dominates and the Chiefs’ offense struggles (relatively speaking)? Sure, but I don’t see it as particularly likely.
The Buccaneers’ offense against the Chiefs defense is a much bigger question. Brady isn’t elite anymore, but he’s good enough to make the occasional big play. And the Chiefs’ defense has enough elite players that when they’re firing on all cylinders they’re as good of a unit as any in the NFL, but they can be inconsistent. It’s possible Brady has a big day, and it turns into a shootout like the 2018 AFC Championship, but it’s also possible that Brady throws a bunch of picks and the Chiefs win by 30.
Overall Tampa Bay needs an inside straight to win. They need to slow down the Chiefs offense, and their offense needs to do well, and they probably need the Chiefs to make an uncharacteristic mistake or two to win.