It’s officially Super Bowl week in Las Vegas where the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs are getting set for the big game. There will be plenty of storylines to watch this week including if Kyle Shanahan can get his first Super Bowl as a coach. This will also be a rematch of Super Bowl LIV where the Chiefs won 31-20.
Before we make our Super Bowl LVIII pick later this week let’s first preview the game.
As of today, the early line for Super Bowl LVIII is the 49ers -2. This is pretty much where I expect it to be although it could get down to San Francisco -1 by game time. I am expecting a close game and it looks like the sharks are expecting the same.
The current over/under is at 47.5 but I could see this number also dropping before game time. This should be a relatively low-scoring game with two stellar defenses going at it. I don’t expect a shootout like we saw last year with the Chiefs winning 38-35 over the Eagles.
Brock Purdy vs. Patrick Mahomes
The quarterback matchup in this game will be fascinating to watch. Patrick Mahomes is once again playing excellent playoff football. His numbers haven’t been off the charts but he has played turnover-free football thus far and is using his legs for timely runs. This 49ers defense will present another test for Mahomes and the Chiefs but they have proved they are up for the challenge.
Meanwhile, in San Francisco all eyes will be on Brock Purdy. Purdy has been the hot topic of discussion this past week with some calling him just a game manager. Purdy is much more than that if you dive more into his game. He led the league in quarterback rating in the regular season at 113.0 and also was a league leader in yards per attempt at 9.6. Sure this 49ers offense is loaded with talent but Purdy has shown he can carry this team if needed.
Andy Reid vs. Kyle Shanahan
On the coaching side of things, this could very well be the last game that Andy Reid coaches. Reid flirted with retiring after last season but ultimately decided to return. If the Chiefs win again I wouldn’t be shocked if Reid decides to hang it up ending his Hall of Fame coaching career.
Kyle Shanahan however, is just getting started in his coaching career. At 44, this will be Shanahan’s 3rd appearance in a Super Bowl and second as a head coach. We all remember the 28-3 meltdown in Atlanta when Shanahan was OC but don’t forget the 49ers were up 20-10 in Super Bowl LIV before collapsing in the 4th quarter. If Shanahan can finally seal the deal and win his first Lombardi it will be the first of many.
Key Injuries to Watch
For the most part, both the Chiefs and the 49ers are coming into Super Bowl LVIII fairly healthy but there are some injuries to monitor. Chiefs running back Isiah Pacheco is dealing with toe and ankle injuries but the good news is he is off the injury report. Star Chiefs defensive end Chris Jones is dealing with a quad injury that has him limited on the practice reports. Jones also has no game status this week which is huge for the Chiefs as they will need him.
In San Francisco, tight end George Kittle is dealing with a toe injury that had him listed as DNP this past week. It looks like Kittle will go but it’s worth monitoring his status this week. 49ers DE Arik Armstead also showed up on the injury report last week with knee and foot injuries. It looks as if these injuries are not serious and he should also be good to go as well.