Super Bowl LVIII Preview: A Look Back at Super Bowl LIV (Can History Create Betting Value?)

What can we learn the last time these two teams met in the Super Bowl, and what are the key changes since then? Is there a betting edge available?

Super Bowl LIV - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs
Super Bowl LIV - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs / Al Bello/GettyImages
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With the 'Big Game' upon us, we have a rare situation ahead of the Chiefs vs. 49ers Super Bowl as the team faced with a similar group of chracters on the field for both teams.

I think by looking back at the last Super Bowl between these two teams, we can learn a few thing from it, and we can evaluate the changes each team has made since then in order to get a clearer picture of who might win the big game.

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Super Bowl LIV Review: Kansas City Chiefs 31 San Francisco 49ers 20.

The game was played just four years ago. The Chiefs were a 1.5-point favorite in that meeting, Patrick Mahomes' first Super Bowl appearance.

The final Super Bowl score was not indicative of how close the game actually was.  Some would argue the 49ers should have won.  The 49ers led 20-10 after three quarters and seemed to have the game in hand after a fourth quarter interception by Patrick Mahomes. 

Up 10, with the ball, and less than 12 minutes remaining in the game, who could ask for anything more if you were the 49ers?  But 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan went into ‘play not to lose’ mode and got ambushed 21-0 in the final 6:13 of the fourth.  How did it happen?

That Mahomes interception ended a long 12-play drive and gave the 49ers a chance to ice the game.  However, due in part to some conservative play calling, the Chiefs got a stop. Mahomes drove KC 10 plays and 83 yards for a touchdown to cut the deficit to 20-17 with only six minutes left. 

Once again, Shanahan ran on first down, and after a couple of short incompletions, it was three and out. 

Mahomes once again drove KC to a quick seven play 65-yard drive in less than three minutes to give the Chiefs the lead 24-20.  Needing a touchdown, Shanahan, for the fourth consecutive time, ran on first down on a drive that eventually stalled on their own 42. Two plays later, KC sealed it with a Damien Williams long touchdown run.

Both Mahomes and Jimmy Garoppolo did not play particularly well as each had two interceptions and a passer rating below 80. Both teams ran it well: KC ran 29 times for 144 yards (4.4 average), and SF ran 22 times for 141 yards (6.4 average).

What has changed since Super Bowl 54? 

Category

KC

SF

Edge Now?

Head Coach

N

N

KC

OC

Y

N

KC

DC

N

Y

KC

QB

N

Y

KC

RB star

Y

Y

SF

WR star

Y

N

SF

TE

N

N

EVEN

OL

Y

Y

EVEN

DE star

N

N

EVEN

LB star

Y

N

SF

CB/S stars

Y

Y

EVEN

K

N

Y

KC

Super Bowl Prediction and Pick

The first two factors I look at in any NFL game are head coach and quarterback. 

I have to say, I trust Andy Reid over Kyle Shanahan and Patrick Mahomes over Brock Purdy.  The KC crew are proven winners while the SF crew are still hoping. 

The changes since the last Super Bowl favor SF in two respects.  The 49ers acquisition of Christian McCaffrey and the loss of Tyreek Hill for the Chiefs.  However, the Chiefs have made vast improvements on defense, the best its been in the Mahomes era.

And should the game come down to a field goal attempt, I’d sure rather have Harrison Butker kick it than rookie Jake Moody.

The Preliminary Pick:

CHIEFS +1.5

Next week, we will add post-season statistics, our best bet game selection, and score prediction.

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.