Super Bowl 2021: Location, Point Spread and Picks for Chiefs vs. Bucs

Kristopher Knox@@kris_knoxFeatured ColumnistJanuary 26, 2021

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady (12) exchanges words with Kansas City Chiefs defensive tackle Chris Jones (95) as referee Shawn  Hochuli (83) tries to separate the two during the second half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Jason Behnken)
Jason Behnken/Associated Press

Tom Brady is set to appear in his 10th Super Bowl. Patrick Mahomes is set to appear in his second in three years as a starter. If fans were hoping that Super Bowl LV would bring a matchup between the greatest of all time and the greatest of the foreseeable future, they got their wish.

Of course, the quarterback matchup between Brady and Mahomes isn't the only reason that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs are likely to provide a thrilling game. Both teams feature star-studded rosters and legitimate playmakers on both sides of the ball.

Offensively, we could see a track meet with pass-catchers like Tyreek Hill, Travis Kelce, Mike Evans and Rob Gronkowski running loose in the secondary. We could also see a defensive struggle with standouts like Shaquil Barrett and Chris Jones wreaking havoc in the backfield.

There's no telling exactly what sort of contest Super Bowl LV is going to be—though Las Vegas certainly has its idea of how things will unfold. Here, we'll take a look at the latest line and over/under from DraftKings Sportsbook, along with a look at the top pregame storylines and score predictions.

   

Super Bowl LV

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Where: Raymond James Stadium, Tampa, Florida

When: February 7, 2021

Time: 6:30 p.m. ET

TV and Live Stream: CBS, CBS All Access

Line and Over/Under: KC -3, 56.5

Prediction: Kansas City 33, Tampa Bay 30

   

Charlie Riedel/Associated Press

Kansas City is favored by a field goal here, which isn't a surprise given the results of these teams' regular-season matchup. Kansas City won that game—also in Tampa—by a 27-24 final score. While the Buccaneers are going to enjoy the first-ever Super Bowl home-field advantage, that might not play a huge factor here.

However, it's worth noting that when Tampa fell to the Chiefs in Round 1, it helped spark a late-season surge. The Bucs spent the following week on bye and used that time to refocus and reflect on where the season was headed.

"We lost some close games to some really good teams," head coach Bruce Arians told reporters of the bye-week conversation. "And we have to find a way to win. And it's gonna take everybody. There's things that are gonna happen, but if everybody digs a little bit deeper, we'll figure out ways to win games. And once we get it going, we're gonna be hard to stop."

Tampa hasn't lost a game since falling to Kansas City, despite playing five of its last seven games on the road.

The offense has been clicking for the Buccaneers since then too, which is why we may see a higher-scoring game this time around. Injuries, though, could be a factor for the Chiefs. Left tackle Eric Fisher is out with a torn Achilles he suffered in the AFC title game, while right tackle Mitchell Schwartz has been out since Week 6 with a back injury and is unlikely to return.

"I can't tell you that I'm optimistic about it," Chiefs coach Andy Reid said, per Sam McDowell of the Kansas City Star.

Injuries along the line could hinder Mahomes against a Bucs defensive front that sacked Aaron Rodgers five times this past week.

Of course, it's not as if Brady and the Bucs are likely to have a clean pocket with which to operate. Jones and Dee Ford led a Chiefs pass rush that logged 32 sacks in the regular season and five sacks over the past two weeks of postseason play.

This game could well be won by the quarterback who makes the fewest fatal errors. As good as Brady has been throughout his career, it's hard to pick him against Mahomes in this category. Brady threw three second-half interceptions against the Green Bay Packers last Sunday, and one could argue that Tampa only survived because Green Bay squandered its opportunities.

Mahomes has arguably the NFL's most explosive offense at his disposal, and if Tampa turns the ball over, he's likely to turn those opportunities into touchdowns.

This should be a close game, and it's one that could truly go either way. However, there's a very good chance that February 7 marks the day that Brady officially passes the torch to Mahomes as the best quarterback in football.

                                 


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