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Chiefs-49ers Super Bowl VIII predictions from Arrowhead Pride

Let’s see what AP staffers (and readers) think about Sunday’s game between Kansas City and San Francisco.

Super Bowl LVIII - Previews Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Before the Kansas City Chiefs played the Baltimore Ravens in the AFC championship, every member of Arrowhead Pride’s contributor panel believed it would be a close game — but almost 40% thought the Ravens would send the Chiefs home with a loss. All of them also expected a higher-scoring game, too. It added up to a composite prediction of a 25-25 tie. Rocky Magaña’s 24-20 pick was the closest to the Chiefs’ 17-10 victory, missing by 20 points. Pete Sweeney’s 24-23 prediction was the runner-up with 26 points of error. Our readers were a little more confident in a Kansas City victory. 72% of them went with the Chiefs.

In Super Bowl LVIII, the Chiefs face the San Francisco 49ers at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. According to DraftKings Sportsbook, San Francisco is favored by two points.

Let’s see what the staff — and our readers — think about the matchup.


Nate Christensen (@natech32)

I have famously picked against Kansas City in the last two playoff games. Do I have any regrets? No. That’s how I felt going into those matchups. The Chiefs just proved me wrong. So when I say that I think Kansas City will win big on Sunday, it’s what I genuinely believe. I think this is a great matchup for the Chiefs. Giving Andy Reid two weeks to attack Steve Wilks’ defense gives me confidence that we might see the season’s best offensive performance. And while I expect the 49ers to have moments of success, I think the Chiefs will crush the pocket and force Brock Purdy into turnovers — a common theme in his games against elite defenses. I’ve never felt more confident going into a Super Bowl.

Chiefs 34, 49ers 17


John Dixon (@Arrowheadphones)

I can’t bring myself to confidently declare the Chiefs will win this one going away. Just as in the AFC Championship, there are legitimate arguments that the opposing team will prevail. But just as in that game, there’s another argument I can’t ignore. Someday, things will be different. Someday, I will no longer believe that in a close game, Patrick Mahomes will always give the Chiefs the edge. And someday, monkeys will fly out of my butt.

Chiefs 27, 49ers 20


Ron Kopp Jr. (@Ron_Kopp)

I truly doubted the 2023 Chiefs would win a Super Bowl. Sometimes I think that’s because I still can’t believe I’m covering an organization this special. But with each triumphant playoff win, the ridiculous comparisons to the Tom Brady-led Patriots feel more appropriate. It felt like the Bills’ time. It seemed like it was the Ravens’ year. Now it’s time to spoil the 49ers’ awesome season. The NFL has avoided a back-to-back champion long enough. This Kansas City team has earned the right to cement itself as an all-time dynasty.

Chiefs 30, 49ers 24


Rocky Magaña (@RockyMagana)

Over the course of a season, nothing matters more than talent. But the Super Bowl is an entirely different monster. Everything takes longer. The coin flip, halftime and TV timeouts are just some examples. There is a game within the game — and the only way to prepare for it is actually playing in it. So the Super Bowl is one time where experience matters more than talent. I’ll take the Chiefs’ defense over the 49ers’ defense all day long. San Francisco has the offensive weapons, but Kansas City has Patrick Mahomes. The 49ers spent the week complaining about practice fields and accepting regular-season awards, while the Chiefs were hunkered down, focusing on the real goal. I predict that history will repeat itself. 49ers’ head coach (and nepo-baby) Kyle Shanahan’s team will once again fold in the second half of the Super Bowl.

Chiefs 23, 49ers 17


Jared Sapp (@TrumanChief)

I (happily) looked like a fool after predicting Baltimore would win the AFC Championship. I will not be doing that again. I believe the Chiefs’ defense is the most talented unit in the game — and I trust that Patrick Mahomes will be able to do the things that Brock Purdy can’t. Between the two teams, Kansas City seems much more focused on its business — and I think the team’s experience will show. Twice this postseason, the 49ers have been fortunate to come back from self-imposed deficits. Against the Ravens, the Chiefs showed that against Steve Spagnuolo’s crew, that is a terrible strategy.

Chiefs 24, 49ers 20


Stephen Serda (@StephenSerda)

There is zero doubt that on Sunday, San Francisco will bring more star power. Even an offense led by Patrick Mahomes doesn’t quite stand up to the stature of an offense featuring Christian McCaffrey, George Kittle, Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk. But even after acknowledging the 49ers’ star power, I still find it hard to believe the Chiefs won’t be able to power across another Super Bowl finish line. Throughout this postseason, San Francisco has played down to its competition — while Kansas City has stepped up on every stage. So at the end of the day, I’m not betting against Mahomes, head coach Andy Reid and Steve Spagnuolo’s defense. With the extra preparation, I’m confident the Chiefs will get the best on both sides of the ball as they complete their back-to-back Super Bowl run.

Chiefs 27, 49ers 21


Matt Stagner (@stagdsp)

I can’t imagine a scenario where we should feel more confident about our favorite team heading into a playoff game. Kansas City has been the tougher, more professional team in the postseason. Still, it somehow arrived in Las Vegas as both an underdog and a villain. The Chiefs have practiced in pads. They’ve soaked up all the boos. They have the best defense and the best quarterback. They’ve figured out exactly how to win; they will surely have a stellar game plan for the season’s final showdown. The vibes are immaculate — and compared to the 2022 Eagles or the 2023 Ravens, the matchup feels pretty favorable. The buildup has been epic — and the story of this season could be one for the ages. There’s nothing left to do but enjoy watching Andy Reid, Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce, Harrison Butker, Chris Jones, Rashee Rice and Isiah Pacheco continue their march into history.

Chiefs 27, 49ers 21


Pete Sweeney (@pgsween)

For several reasons, I continue to find it strange that the Chiefs remain the underdogs — which kind of makes me worry about what I’m not seeing. But what I do see is an elite Kansas City defense that has found a way to be opponent-proof, along with a Chiefs offense that broke through during the first half of the AFC Championship — and will be up against a 49ers defense that hasn’t looked all that good in a while. I also see a two-time MVP quarterback up against the last pick of the draft. Again... how are the Chiefs the underdogs in this game? Knock on wood if you must, but I think Kansas City has already beaten two better opponents in their houses.

Chiefs 30, 49ers 17


Prop bets

Head on over to DraftKings Sportsbook and take...everything Patrick Mahomes.

  • Super Bowl MVP (+125)
  • Over 260.5 passing yards (-115)
  • Over 1.5 passing touchdowns (-166)

Arrowhead Pride readers pick

READER RECORD: 183-98-3

Poll

Which team wins 49ers (14-5) at Chiefs (14-6)?

This poll is closed

  • 10%
    Chiefs in a blowout (14 or more points)
    (153 votes)
  • 41%
    Chiefs in an easy win (8-13 points)
    (609 votes)
  • 38%
    Chiefs in a close game (7 or fewer points)
    (562 votes)
  • 5%
    49ers in a close game
    (79 votes)
  • 2%
    49ers in an easy win
    (34 votes)
  • 1%
    49ers in a blowout
    (22 votes)
1459 votes total Vote Now

Reader Record by Week

Predictions W-L-T
Week 1 picks 10-6-0
Week 2 picks 12-4-0
Week 3 picks 10-6-0
Week 4 picks 11-5-0
Week 5 picks 8-6-0
Week 6 picks 10-5-0
Week 7 picks 5-8-0
Week 8 picks 11-5-0
Week 9 picks 11-3-0
Week 10 picks 9-5-0
Week 11 picks 8-6-0
Week 12 picks 11-4-1
Week 13 picks 10-3-0
Week 14 picks 6-9-0
Week 15 picks 11-5-0
Week 16 picks 10-4-2
Week 17 picks 12-4-0
Week 18 picks 10-6-0
Week 19 picks 3-3-0
Week 20 picks 4-0-0
Week 21 picks 1-1-0
Total 183-98-3
(0.6496)

AP Staff Record

TW LW Staffer W L T Pct
1 3 John Dixon 184 100 0 0.6479
2 1 Stephen Serda 182 99 0 0.6477
3 2 Rocky Magaña 173 95 0 0.6455
4 4 Ron Kopp Jr. 179 102 0 0.6370
5 5 Pete Sweeney 126 75 0 0.6269
6 6 Matt Stagner 176 106 0 0.6241
7 7 Jared Sapp 176 108 0 0.6197
8 8 Kramer Sansone 171 111 0 0.6064
9 9 Nate Christensen 170 114 0 0.5986
10 10 Dakota Watson 168 115 0 0.5936
11 11 Ashley Justice 166 118 0 0.5845
12 12 Maurice Elston 102 80 0 0.5604

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