Super Bowl LIV is upon us with the San Francisco 49ers set to face off against the Kansas City Chiefs in Miami Gardens, Florida on February 2. It’s sure to be an exciting matchup between two teams who have not seen the Super Bowl stage in quite some time.
The 49ers were the dominant force in football throughout the eighties, being generally regarded as one of the top dynasties of all time. They smashed their way through the decade winning four Super Bowls, but haven’t won the big game since their 1995 season. 26 years have passed since they’ve raised the Lombardi Trophy, and they’ll be hoping to ruin the Kansas City Chiefs’ first Super Bowl appearance in 50 years.
But will the 49ers be able to pull it off? They bullied the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game and are well equipped to do the same to the Chiefs if they can stop quarterback Patrick Mahomes. For Mahomes and the Chiefs, they’ll need to get ahead early and not fall behind, as they did against the Houston Texans and Tennessee Titans, which was detailed by bwin News.
But waiting for them will be the 49ers defense, an almost immovable object. With their fierce pass rush, they easily brushed aside the Packers and quarterback Aaron Rodgers, repeating their regular-season victory with the same effective approach of collapsing the pocket and forcing Rodgers away from the game plan.
If the 49ers can rely on their defense in Super Bowl LIV, they can use the same formula they deployed against the Packers – run the ball and the clock. Remember, they only needed eight total pass attempts from quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo in their 37-20 victory over Green Bay.
But if the game is put into the hands of Garopollo, he will at least understand what kind of pressure comes with it in such a big game. As Tom Brady’s backup, he already won two Super Bowls with the New England Patriots and now he’s looking for one in his own right. As PFN OSM analyst Oliver Hodgkinson noted, Garoppolo seems to play his best in big games, something that should not be lost on the Chiefs as they put the final touches on their game plan.
They’ve also got to be aware of the 49ers tendency to simply bully their way through games. They have arguably the most gifted defensive line the NFL has ever seen, but also boast strong playmakers all over the field. They stifle, they throttle, and they come at you in waves. They’re the schoolyard bully, exerting their physical dominance to make you submit before you’ve had a chance to shine.
Tevin Coleman is part of that rushing group and Niners fans will be hoping he’s healthy enough to play a key role in Miami. Raheem Mostert stood out in the NFC Championship (41 carries for 278 yards and four touchdowns), and while Matt Brieda has struggled over the past several weeks, he’s always a threat with the ball in his hands.
But if the Chiefs get ahead early, the 49ers may be forced to abandon their run game. This season, they gained 4,498 yards through the air and were the top passing team in the AFC. Who will come out on top? What team’s strength will shine through? The game is less than a week away and we’ll have our answer soon enough.