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Chiefs vs. Buccaneers: Historic Head-to-Head Record and Super Bowl 55 Pick

Joe Tansey@JTansey90Featured ColumnistJanuary 31, 2021

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Tyreek Hill (10) reacts as he beats Tampa Bay Buccaneers strong safety Antoine Winfield Jr. (31) on a 75-yard touchown reception during the first half of an NFL football game Sunday, Nov. 29, 2020, in Tampa, Fla. (AP Photo/Mark LoMoglio)
Mark LoMoglio/Associated Press

The Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers have played each other five times in the last 20 years. 

On February 7, the Chiefs and Bucs will face each other for the second time in a single season in Super Bowl 55. 

Tampa Bay holds a slight edge over Kansas City in the all-time head-to-head series, but the Chiefs won the Week 12 affair at Raymond James Stadium.

The all-time series between Patrick Mahomes and Tom Brady is also close, as the two quarterbacks split their four meetings against each other. 

Mahomes captured the last two showdowns with Brady and he has a chance to replicate his last victory to clinch back-to-back Super Bowl crowns.

          

Head-to-Head Record

Tampa Bay owns a 7-6 advantage in the all-time series against Kansas City.

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The Chiefs won the last meeting in Week 12 by a 27-24 score. That ended a five-game franchise losing streak to Tampa Bay. 

That contest was the first matchup between Mahomes and Brady that did not feature the New England Patriots. 

Brady won the first two games against Mahomes, including the 2019 AFC Championship Game, but he lost the last two, one with New England and the other with Tampa Bay.

          

Super Bowl 55 Pick

Kansas City 34, Tampa Bay 27

Tampa Bay will make history on Sunday as the first team to play in the Super Bowl in its home stadium. 

But there may not be an advantage in play for the Bucs since there will be a limited capacity of fans and Kansas City already won in Tampa in the regular season. 

Kansas City earned a 20-7 halftime lead on November 29 thanks to the connection between Mahomes and Tyreek Hill.

Hill had touchdown catches of 75 and 44 yards in the first quarter and he iced the victory with a 20-yard scoring catch in the third quarter. 

Even if the Bucs contain Hill, they are not guaranteed to slow down the Chiefs offense since Travis Kelce can hurt them across the middle. 

Kelce caught all eight of his targets for 82 yards in Week 12 and he enters the Super Bowl on a six-game scoring streak.

Tampa Bay's best defensive strategy should be to contain Hill and Kelce from breaking plays of 20 or more yards. 

Since Kansas City's top two targets are thrown to at a high rate, they are going to record a handful of catches and good chunk of receiving yards, but if Tampa Bay limits the big plays, unlike Week 12, it can stay within one possession. 

If Hill and Kelce get close to a third straight set of 100-yard performances, Tampa Bay has to find a way to match that. 

Any counter to Kansas City's high-powered offense begins with Brady being near perfect in the pocket, which he has not been against playoff qualifiers. 

All five of Brady's multi-interception performances occurred against the best teams in each conference. He was picked off three times in Week 9 by the New Orleans Saints and by the Green Bay Packers in the NFC Championship Game. 

Kansas City was one of three opponents to intercept Brady twice in a single contest. The Saints and Los Angeles Rams were the others. The Chiefs' starting defense forced a turnover in all but one game this season. 

In addition to avoiding turnovers, Brady needs to pick out his top wide receivers more to get close to the totals expected from Hill and Kelce. 

Tampa Bay had a single 100-yard receiver in the last two games. Chris Godwin had 110 receiving yards in the NFC Championship Game. 

Mike Evans has a touchdown catch in each of the last two contests, but he only had 54 yards off four catches in the wins over the Saints and Packers. 

If those totals remain in the same range on Super Bowl Sunday, the Bucs may come up a score or two short, even with a six-time champion leading their offense.

       

Follow Joe on Twitter, @JTansey90.

Statistics obtained from Pro Football Reference.

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