SB Pick and More

Posted: February 10th, 2023 | Author: | Filed under: Philadelphia Eagles | Comments Off on SB Pick and More

We’re getting closer to the game, but it still feels ages away. I don’t remember it being that way for Super Bowl LII, but that was different. The Eagles hadn’t been in the big game in so long that I soaked up every possible moment. I’ve done some of that this week, but now I’m ready for them to play.

I want to know if this team is as good as I think.


In my game preview I talked about how the Eagles would have to consider matching up with the Chiefs 12 and 13 personnel looks. KC also has to figure out how they want to play the Eagles when they use 12 personnel (2 TEs). If the Chiefs stay in Nickel or Dime, the Eagles will run on them. If the Chiefs go base, the Eagles will throw.

KC can go with the Nickel/Dime looks and then mix in run blitzes. That is risky, but can also lead to some bad plays for the Eagles. If they can’t read the blitz pre-snap, they are vulnerable. If they do read, the defense is in trouble.

Lots of intrigue for both coaching staffs.


It will be interesting to see how the game starts. Andy Reid is great with gameplans so the Chiefs may come out and move the ball really well to start the game. Don’t panic if that happens. Opening drives tend to favor the offense since they practice those plays over and over. The defense has to react at what’s coming at them.

I expect Steve Spagnuolo to be aggressive early. He will want to test Jalen Hurts and see what works and what doesn’t. Spags won’t be afraid to take chances.


The Chiefs will want to blitz, while also playing zone and keeping safeties back. There will be areas to attack. It will be up to Hurts to make good reads and good decisions. His blockers need to give him enough time to make those plays.


It can be easy to start hearing about Spags gameplans and worry about the Eagles. He’s won a couple of Super Bowls and has had some big moments. Still, the Eagles have great offensive coaches. Let’s make sure we give them proper credit. They were third in the NFL in scoring and have the same number of 30-point games as KC (regular and postseason combined).

The Eagles staff has been masterful this year at coming up with great wrinkles that have left defensive coaches and players scratching their heads. The Eagles staff isn’t new to Spags. They’ll have some ideas on how to attack his defense.


DeVonta Smith returned 2 punts this year. He was good at that in college and has plenty of experience. In theory, this isn’t huge, but you’d rather have the guy who did it all season. If Covey is out, it will be interesting to see what the Eagles do with that roster spot.


The Eagles also went 3-0 against the Coach of the Year.

I’m not taking anything away from them. They all had great seasons. They just didn’t have great games against the Eagles.

And that’s not an accident. The Eagles seem to relish big challenges. It brings out the best in them.

Mahomes will be the biggest challenge of them all. I’m genuinely excited to see what they do. He might shred the defense and have a great game, but this group is good enough to make plays and beat him.


The Chiefs know they have to protect Mahomes. The OL won’t be able to do that alone. They will have extra blockers stay in and protect on some plays. They will have RBs and TEs chip at times. Reid knows he must have Mahomes to win this game.

The blocking will affect what options Mahomes has. He won’t always have five guys immediately going out on pass routes. That gives an advantage to the Eagles, but Mahomes is creative enough to buy time and let someone get open. The Eagles must stay plastered to receivers and the pass rush must get pressure.



I’m going to skip the obvious names (QBs and stars).

Kenny Gainwell has 195 total yards and a rushing TD in postseason play this year. He had 89 yards and a TD against KC in the 2021 regular season. Miles Sanders is still the primary RB, but Gainwell is hot and will play on some passing downs. He is an X-factor for the Eagles offense.

Josh Sweat had a breakout season, finishing with 11 sacks and 23 QB hits. He led the team with 15 TFLs. I’m assuming the Chiefs will focus most of their help on the right side, where Haason Reddick has a clear advantage over Andrew Wylie. That means Sweat will see LT Orlando Brown one-on-one a lot. Sweat should win that battle.

Isiah Pacheco / Jerick McKinnon could be huge for the Chiefs offense. The Eagles will focus on Kelce. The Chiefs receivers are solid, but hardly special. Reid may see that getting the ball to his RBs in space is a good way to attack the Eagles D. They combined for 69 catches during the season. They were 7-76 in the AFC title game. Reid knows how to get the ball to RBs in the passing game and he’s got the horses to make that work.

Frank Clark has 2.5 sacks in the first two playoff games. He feasted on mediocre OTs. This will be much tougher on him. Clark does have a good dip move and that could give Jordan Mailata a hard time. Mailata is a tall LT and can struggle when pass rushers are able to go low against him. I think backup DL Mike Danna could be tough. Spags will use him at DT and DE as a rusher. Danna is small, but quick and active. He had 5 sacks this year while coming off the bench.



Imagine the Eagles hold a lead late in the game. Reid sees his team driving, but a critical situation pops up and he’s got no timeouts left. The Eagles win in part because of Big Red’s game management.

What if the Chiefs win the game because they suddenly turn into a running team. That would be torture for Eagles fans. Losing to Reid would be tough, but losing to him because he went all in on the run game would be maddening.

What if the Eagles defense goes nuts and sacks Mahomes 10 to 12 times because Reid stuck with the pass despite blocking struggles. It would be fun to watch, but also might bring up PTSD issues for Eagles fans remembering Osi Umenyiora from 2007.

What if the Eagles OL just dominates and the Eagles win in large part because of that? The OL was an issue for the Eagles for most of the 80’s and 90’s. There were some good years (1980, 1992 for sure), but the Eagles struggled to build an OL that could play well and stay together. That all changed when Reid came to town. He signed Jon Runyan and began a real focus on the OL that has lasted ever since. He just might have helped create the monster that will cost him a Super Bowl win.


Eagles 27
Chiefs 24

The Eagles are too good on the line of scrimmage. Mahomes is a great QB and will make some plays, but he isn’t enough to overcome the Eagles firepower.

Great line here.

The Eagles have the better roster. And on Sunday night they’ll have the Lombardi Trophy.


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