Column: Chiefs will batter Tom Brady and Bucs in Super Bowl LV blowout
In an abomination spanning more than two decades, this Super Bowl prediction column has been wrong about XV times.
Sixteen out of 21 years, I have picked the wrong team. Eleven consecutive years, I struck out. Three straight times I picked the Buffalo Bills.
I have been wrong on so many occasions, gamblers have actually emailed me during Super Bowl week to ask for a preview of my pick so they could bet the other team.
As annual Super Bowl prediction columns go, you’re reading the worst of all time, the WOAT.
However, during all these years, there is one thing I have gotten right, and it involves the GOAT.
I know when Tom Brady is about to get deflated.
Everything you need to know about the 2021 Super Bowl between the Chiefs and Buccaneers, including start time, location, TV channel and halftime show.
I correctly picked the New York Giants to pull off the monumental upset of Brady’s New England Patriots in 2008. I accurately predicted that the Philadelphia Eagles would swoop to stun Brady and the Patriots in 2018.
I have sensed when the greatest Super Bowl quarterback is on the precipice of defeat, so believe me when I tell you, it’s about to happen again.
On Sunday in Super Bowl LV at Tampa’s Raymond James Stadium, against the relentless Kansas City Chiefs, Brady will burden his Tampa Bay Buccaneers with a backyard battering.
It will be Brady bamboozled by the only defensive coordinator who has ever consistently contained him. It will be Brady chased around, collapsed upon, and forced into doing what he does worst.
It will be Brady, finally beloved, but soundly beaten.
It will be Kansas City 45, Bucs 17.
The dominant narrative here is a simple one. Brady was the 27th ranked passer in the NFL this season when under pressure. And nobody knows how to apply pressure on a quarterback like Chiefs’ defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo.
The harassment that led to five sacks of Brady in that 2008 Super Bowl? Drawn up by Spagnuolo. The two interceptions thrown by Brady that led to the Bucs’ loss to Kansas City earlier this season? Once again, Spagnuolo.
Against every other defensive coordinator in his 21-year career, Brady has a record of 261-77. Against Spagnuolo, he is 2-3.
Breaking down how the Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers will match up on the field in Super Bowl LV on Sunday.
A Chiefs defense led up front by Chris Jones and Frank Clark, and anchored deep by Tyrann Mathieu, brought pressure on 35% of quarterback drop-backs this season. That’s the highest rate of any NFL team in the last 10 seasons.
So you know the Chiefs will be coming after Brady, and you figure there’s little he will be able to do about it. Witness their earlier meeting this season, when Brady was only four-for-nine passing when pressured.
And forget about beating the Chiefs deep. The Chiefs have a league-leading nine interceptions on passes thrown 20 or more yards downfield. Brady completed just four such passes in their first meeting. One was for a touchdown, but another was intercepted.
Brady’s inspiration brought the Bucs to this point, but it will be his frustration that finishes them. Super Bowls are about matchups, and even for the greatest quarterback ever, this is one lousy matchup.
One could argue that a similar fate awaits brilliant Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes, as he is playing behind an offensive line missing its injured Pro Bowl left tackle Eric Fisher. That jury-rigged group will feature two undrafted free agents, two seventh-round draft picks and one guy who was signed at midseason.
With the overpowering Jason Pierre-Paul and Shaq Barrett rushing from the edges, it would seem Mahomes would get pounded as much as his 18-years-older counterpart.
One difference. Mahomes can move, create, improvise. Brady cannot.
Mahomes is the league’s highest-ranked quarterback when under pressure. Against a blitz, he ranks first in passer rating, touchdown-to-interception ratio, and yards per attempt.
Complete coverage of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 31-9 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl 2021.
In last year’s Super Bowl against the San Francisco 49ers, Mahomes was pressured 20 times, the second most against a quarterback whose team won the game.
Mahomes was the MVP then, and he’ll be the MVP now. Brady is the GOAT, but he’ll spend Sunday bleating for his life.
Kansas City wins big, Brady loses big, one dynasty is fostered, another dynasty fades.
Best day Bill Belichick has had all year.
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