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Super Bowl LVIII Predictions for Chiefs vs 49ers and MVP

It all comes down to this. Super Bowl LVIII is set, with Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce leading the Kansas City Chiefs against Brock Purdy, Christian McCaffrey, and the San Francisco 49ers that were among the NFL's most dominant teams throughout the 2023 NFL season, with the Lombardi Trophy at stake.

For the Chiefs, the opportunity is there to cement Kansas City's status as a modern day dynasty with a third Super Bowl win in the past five seasons as well as emerge a repeat champion.

Meanwhile, the 49ers can join the New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers as the only franchises with six Lombardis in their trophy case if Kyle Shanahan's team can avenge a Super Bowl LIV loss to Andy Reid's Chiefs.

Matt Lombardo's Super Bowl Prediction

LAS VEGAS, NV - FEBRUARY 5: A general view of the Vince Lombardi Trophy with the Kansas City Chiefs helmets before a press conference ahead of Super Bowl LVIII at Allegiant Stadium on February 5, 2024 in Las Vegas, NV.

Photo by Perry Knotts/Getty Images

For all of the firepower on both offenses, this game is going to come down to a pair of defenses that have in the case of the 49ers played a supporting role in San Francisco becoming one of the NFL's toughest teams to beat, and a Chiefs defense that has become the hallmark of this 2023 squad.

The problem, though, for the 49ers is that just as Steve Spagnuolo's defense has tightened the screws on the likes of Lamar Jackson and Tua Tagovailoa en route to this Super Bowl, Patrick Mahomes and the offense are suddenly rounding into a form they weren't able to consistently maintain throughout the course of the regular season.

Of the teams that won at least one playoff game, only the Baltimore Ravens are surrendering fewer points than the 13.7 the Chiefs have during this postseason.

Likewise, the 49ers were not just one of the most imposing defenses throughout the 2023 campaign, but one that made a habit of forcing timely turnovers, as well. San Francisco forced 11 more turnovers than the Chiefs did during the regular season, which is going to put the onus on Mahomes playing a nearly flawless game to put a third ring on his finger.

I think he will.

It is not only a fool's errand to bet on Andy Reid with extra time to prepare, as the Chiefs' head coach is a career 27-5 off the bye week. Similarly, Mahomes has a habit of rising to the occasion in the Super Bowl.

This could be a game that enters the fourth quarter with neither team reaching the end zone, before Mahomes and the Chiefs' offense break out.

Chiefs 24, 49ers 16

Super Bowl MVP: Travis Kelce, TE, Chiefs

This will be the Travis Kelce Super Bowl, on the heels of the NFL's season of Kelce.

Just one year removed from Kelce squaring off against his All-Pro brother, Eagles center Jason Kelce, the Chiefs' All-Pro tight end has taken center stage this season thanks in part to his relationship with pop megastar Taylor Swift.

However, during the Chiefs' playoff run into this Super Bowl, Kelce has really hit his stride.

Across Kansas City's three potseason victories, Kelce has caught 23 of his 27 targets for 262 yards with three touchdowns. Expect Kelce to once again be Mahomes' favorite target in the passing game, especially because the 49ers have allowed an average of 56.4 yards per game to opposing tight ends.

If Kelce leads the Chiefs in receiving, and scores a key touchdown in a tight game, he'll garner plenty of respect from MVP voters.

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