Chiefs vs. Buccaneers: Latest Odds and Predictions for Super Bowl 55

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistJanuary 25, 2021

Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce celebrates after catching a 5-yard touchdown pass during the second half of the AFC championship NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills, Sunday, Jan. 24, 2021, in Kansas City, Mo. (AP Photo/Reed Hoffmann)
Reed Hoffmann/Associated Press

The NFL's reigning Super Bowl champion has to get by a familiar foe to repeat at Super Bowl 55. 

The Kansas City Chiefs lost to Tom Brady in the first of their current run of three straight AFC Championship games, and Andy Reid was defeated by the quarterback in the Super Bowl in 2005 as head coach of the Philadelphia Eagles. 

Brady's 10th Super Bowl appearance will be his first as a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who will be the first team in NFL history to play the championship clash inside its home stadium. 

Although the veteran quarterback has five more championships than Mahomes, he enters the February 7 meeting at Raymond James Stadium as the underdog on the spread. 

Kansas City is a slight favorite on the early spread, and the oddsmakers project a high-scoring affair with an over/under in the high 50s.

           

Super Bowl 55 Odds

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Odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

Spread: Kansas City (-3.5)

Over/Under: 57.5

Money Line: Kansas City (-175; bet $175 to win $100); Tampa Bay (+140; bet $100 to win $140)

         

Prediction

Kansas City 34, Tampa Bay 27

The Chiefs and Bucs met in Week 12 at Raymond James Stadium. Kansas City got out to a 20-7 lead before Brady led his team back to what turned out to be a three-point losing margin. 

The 27-24 result from November 29 would have gone under the projected total for Super Bowl Sunday, but there is a chance for both teams to push the combined point total above 60 points. 

Kansas City wracked up 38 points in the AFC Championship Game, while Tampa Bay produced 31 on the road in the NFC Championship Game. 

The Chiefs scored 31 points in Super Bowl 54, and a majority of their top offensive weapons were part of that contest. The only key figure who wasn't there was rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire, who split time with Darrel Williams in the backfield on Sunday. 

No one has the experience to counter Brady, but Mahomes, Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce should not feel the pressure of the moment since they thrived a year ago. 

Hill and Kelce should be the difference-makers for the third consecutive postseason game. Both players recorded over 100 receiving yards against the Cleveland Browns and Buffalo Bills. 

In Week 12, Hill torched the Tampa Bay secondary for 269 yards and three touchdowns, the majority of which occurred during Kansas City's 20-point first half. 

If Mahomes uses Hill to exploit mismatches with Tampa Bay's defensive backs and works well with Kelce across the middle, it could take away the effectiveness of the Buccaneers' pass rush. 

Mahomes' mobility in the pocket could also make it harder for Jason Pierre-Paul, Vita Vea and others to reach the Kansas City quarterback, who was only sacked twice in the first meeting. 

The Super Bowl 54 winner may be forced to cross the 30-point threshold to beat the six-time winner on the other sideline. 

Tampa Bay was held to under 20 points on two occasions this season, and both occurred prior to Week 10. 

While the Bucs should keep the game close, Brady may have trouble picking out Mike Evans in the passing game. 

Evans was held to three receptions in Week 12 and produced a single catch in the divisional round against the New Orleans Saints. 

If the Chiefs can lock down one side of the field and limit Chris Godwin's production on the other flank, they should be able to get a few stops that create an advantage on the scoreboard. 

If Kansas City beats Tampa Bay, it would be the first repeat champion in the NFL since the New England Patriots won Super Bowls 38 and 39. Brady beat the Reid-coached Eagles in the second game. 

         

Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90

Statistics obtained from Pro Football Reference

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