The young gun versus the old guard is the major storyline for Super Bowl LV when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers take on the Kansas City Chiefs. Tom Brady showed he still has it as he gets ready to play in his 10th Super Bowl, adding to his record, and his first not in a New England uniform. Led by last year’s game MVP Patrick Mahomes, the Chiefs look to become the first repeat winner since 2004 when, ironically, it was Brady leading the Pats to consecutive wins. Tampa also has the advantage of being the first team to ever play a Super Bowl in its home venue, though the Bucs are an early 3-point underdog to subdue the defending champions.
Super Bowl LV between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs will take place on Sunday, February 7, 2021, at 6:30 p.m. ET from Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, FL. The game will be televised nationally on CBS.
Super Bowl LV Odds
Kansas City Chiefs -3
Tampa Bay Buccaneers +3
Hand it to Tampa Bay for winning three road games in order to play the Super Bowl on its home field. The Bucs were most impressive knocking off New Orleans in the division round and Green Bay in the NFC Championship, earning payouts in both. They extended their overall winning streak to seven going 5-2 ATS. Prior to the streak the Bucs suffered a 27-24 setback to Kansas City, covering the 3.5-point spread while playing UNDER the closing total of 56. The line and total are similar for Sunday’s matchup with the Bucs getting 3-points with the total set at 56. Tampa went 5-3 SU and ATS at home this season.
Playing close games over the last half of the season was nothing new to the Chiefs, whose last seven regular season wins were all by six points or fewer with four of them by a field goal or less, including their Week 12 win in Tampa. That just shows another layer to the defending champs that they are able to win close encounters. It wasn’t good for backers, though, as KC was just 1-6 ATS in that span. The trend continued in the playoffs with a narrow 22-17 win over Cleveland in the divisional round, again failing to cover as a 7.5-point favorite. The Chiefs switched gears against Buffalo in the AFC Championship with a 38-24 payout as a 3-point favorite. Over their last 27 games including playoffs, the Chiefs are 25-2 SU and 16-11 ATS.
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
I guess if Brady is able to play at a high level the team he’s quarterbacking has a chance. Brought in for this reason, Brady can add to his legacy as the best of all-time. And he proved he doesn’t need Bill Belichick around to get there. The Bucs are clicking offensively having scored at least 30 points in all three playoff games and six straight overall with Brady tossing multiple touchdown passes in 10 straight games. And the offense could get a boost with the expected return of Antonio Brown, who missed the NFC Championship with a knee injury. AB had five scoring grabs in a four-game stretch prior to getting hurt.
The Bucs defense can’t be overlooked, though. They harassed Aaron Rodgers with five sacks and forced a pair of turnovers, giving them seven takeaways in three playoff games. But the group needs to find a way to slow Mahomes, who threw for 462 yards and three touchdowns in the regular season meeting.
Kansas City Chiefs
Mahomes has a long way to go to be mentioned in the same conversation as Brady, but he’s off to a nice start. The reigning Super Bowl MVP showed no signs of being hindered by a concussion that had him in the league’s protocol the week before the AFC Championship. And he reportedly was dealing with a toe injury against the Bills that limited his mobility. Still, he was able to dissect a decent Buffalo defense completing 29 of 38 for 325 yards and three touchdowns while being sacked only once. And Mahomes will have to be on his toes Sunday with starting tackle Eric Fisher out after sustaining an Achilles injury against Buffalo.
It may not make a difference, though, considering all the playmakers the Chiefs have. You know Tyreek Hill is going to get his hands on the football, and good things happen in that situation. Hill averaged nearly 20 yards on his nine receptions against the Bills and was unstoppable in the earlier meeting amassing 269 yards and three touchdowns on 13 catches. And if the Bucs pay too much attention to Hill, Travis Kelce is an option. And watch for Mecole Hardman to play a role in the offense.
Buccaneers vs. Chiefs Prediction
Super Bowl LV Prediction: Kansas City -3 and UNDER 56
While it’s a home game for the Bucs, it really isn’t considering the corporate environment and limited capacity. Still, playing in your lot has to be worth something, right? Well, maybe, but not against Mahomes and the Chiefs, who were built for a repeat. KC brought back nearly its entire starting lineup from last season and with a chance to repeat I have a feeling they get it done. And despite their ATS woes, the price is too short to pass on.