For the AFC Championship against the Tennessee Titans, the Arrowhead Pride staff was united in predicting a Kansas City Chiefs victory. Almost all thought it would be a decisive win, but not a blowout — just one predicted a a victory of more than two scores. But our readers — while similarly convinced of a Chiefs victory — thought it would be more of a beatdown. 92% picked the Chiefs to win, but 48% saw a blowout coming.
Tom Childs (@tomchilds56)
Patrick Mahomes will produce the greatest performance in Super Bowl history. Enjoy the party, Chiefs Kingdom! Chiefs 41, 49ers 24
John Dixon (@Arrowheadphones)
The 49ers defense is likely to be more of a problem for the Chiefs than most Kansas City fans expect. But the Chiefs defense is likely to be more of a problem for the 49ers than San Francisco fans expect, too. So I don’t expect a high-scoring game — and it should also be a close one. Like all such games — especially in the playoffs — it will likely turn on just a couple of plays. Years from now, I think we’ll see this as one of the all-time great Super Bowl games — and not just because it was Andy’s Reid’s first NFL championship. Chiefs 27, 49ers 23
Ethan Douglas (@ChiefsAnalytics)
The Chiefs have an elite pass offense. The 49ers have an elite pass defense. The Chiefs have a great pass defense. The 49ers have a great pass offense. Lately, the Chiefs have a good run defense. Lately, the 49ers have a good run offense. This 49ers team is great. They’re the scariest team the Chiefs have faced all season. The Chiefs could very well lose this game — but I don’t think they will. When all other things seem equal, look to the quarterback. When on his game, Patrick Mahomes simply cannot be stopped. No amount of Richard Sherman or Nick Bosa will change that. Chiefs 35, 49ers 32
Ron Kopp Jr. (@Ron_Kopp)
If I’ve learned one thing about football this season, it’s that good offense usually beats good defense. Considering both teams have productive, well-coached offenses, there really is one factor that determines the outcome of the game: the quarterback advantage. At some point in this high-scoring game, both signal-callers will have to carry their units with their arms — and it’s not hard to see Mahomes having less trouble doing so than Jimmy Garoppolo. This is the year of the Chiefs; nothing is stopping them from winning that Lombardi trophy. Chiefs 38, 49ers 27
Matt Lane (@ChiefinCarolina)
ITS THE DANG SUPER BOWL AND WE ARE STILL MAKING PREDICTIONS! Let that sink in, Kansas City. No fluke “hot” teams snuck in; these are easily two of the best teams in the league. This what the NFL deserves. When the 49ers have the ball, they will try to run the rock and manipulate space behind the first level with play-action. The two new additions — Frank Clark and Tyrann Mathieu — will have a huge roles in stopping both plans of attack. When the Chiefs have their ball, it’s going to be all about slowing down the 49ers pass rush — while Patrick Mahomes picks them apart. Tyreek Hill could be in for a big game, as San Francisco prefers to run their scheme with minimal adjustments — which could often leave him isolated. In the end, the Chiefs’ roster has more experience in big games. That’s even more true for the coaching staffs. That will be a huge factor. Chiefs 38, 49ers 34
Matt Stagner (@stagdsp)
Frankly, I have no idea how to predict a Super Bowl that involves the Chiefs. On one hand, it’s just another game against an opponent that — on paper — presents similar challenges to ones the Chiefs have overcome in recent weeks. The defense will need to stop the run and neutralize a pass rush. The offense will face the best defense they’ve seen in a while. Admittedly, I picked against the 49ers all season — and they exceeded expectations nearly every week. San Francisco is no ‘paper tiger’ — the team has talent, and they’re well coached. The matchup has been well analyzed by nerdier nerds than me. So it comes down to belief. Believe in the Landlord. He’ll be prepared — and will rally the secondary. Believe in Frank Clark. He’ll get after it — and let everyone know. Believe in the Legion of Zoom. Tyreek Hill, Mecole Hardman and others will get loose and make plays. Believe in playoff Damien and playoff Sammy. They’ll get in the end zone. Believe in Kelce. He’ll find ways to get open and move the chains. Believe in Andy Reid. It’s his time to cement his legacy. But most of all, believe in the MVP. Mahomes is going to wow the world — and he’s NOT going to let this team lose. The Chiefs will win the Lombardi trophy — and we’ll lose our damn minds. Chiefs 42, 49ers 28
Craig Stout (@barleyhop)
Andy Reid is coming off of a bye. Steve Spagnuolo has formulated a fantastic Super Bowl game plan against an all-time offense once before. The Kansas City Chiefs have the best player at the most important position in the league. Kyle Shanahan and the San Francisco 49ers are a damn good football team that will keep this game close, but the Chiefs experience and talent at the most important position on the field will be just a little too much to overcome. Andy finally gets his ring — and Kansas City gets to host a parade. Chiefs 35, 49ers 31
Kent Swanson (@kent_swanson)
Dear Kansas City: It’s been a long road to get to where the Chiefs are now. 50 years between Super Bowls, 34 years between first-round quarterbacks — and countless heartbreaks. You deserve everything that’s happened to this point — and you also deserve more. One team has the best player in the world. The other doesn’t. It’s going to be close, but ultimately I think having Patrick Mahomes is too much for the Niners to overcome. It’s Andy’s turn. Chiefs 42, 49ers 38
Pete Sweeney (@pgsween)
The 49ers have had an excellent season, and you can make a case when going through the rosters — players 1 to 53 — that they have a better all-around team than the Chiefs. But here’s the thing: the 49ers don’t have Patrick Mahomes, and quite simply, that is all that matters. When healthy, the former Texas Tech quarterback makes even excellent teams look below average. He has never lost a game as a pro by more than a touchdown, and on Sunday, he will win by two. The Chiefs win their first world championship in 50 years. Chiefs 42, 49ers 28
Which team wins Super Bowl LIV?
This poll is closed
Chiefs in a blowout
Chiefs in a close game
49ers in a close game
49ers in a blowout
Ties in the standings are broken with prediction points error — how much each prediction misses the actual point spread and the number of points scored by each team.
After cranking out one of the season’s least accurate predictions for the Divisional round game against the Houston Texans, the staff rebounded with our best one of the season for the AFC championship. The composite prediction of 33.4 to 22.0 was remarkably close to the final score of 35-24, carrying just 4.0 points of error.
Craig Stout became the first contributor this season to predict the game perfectly. Four others — Matt Lane, Ron Kopp Jr., Ethan Douglas and Pete Sweeney — all had six points of error in their predictions of 38-27, 37-27, 35-21 and 36-22. Everyone else — except Tom Childs — each had just eight points of error in their picks.
Since all AP contributors picked the Chiefs to win, the race for the season’s best prognosticator is essentially over; it will come down to points of error tiebreakers. While Ron never had the most accurate pick in any week of the season, he had the second-most accurate prediction in six different games — and rarely missed by much. Regardless of the outcome of Super Bowl LIV, his lead in points of error is now insurmountable. Congratulations, Ron!