Online USA sportsbooks favor the Kansas City Chiefs by one point over the San Francisco 49ers on Super Bowl LIV. However, that’s on paper. On the field, that’s a different thing. One key for Kansas City is the ability to put on the field the same men that brung them to the dance. And, barring any unforeseen event, that will be the case. The Chiefs were beset by a few illnesses last week that kept some players from practicing.
Those illnesses are a thing of the past, though, and won’t keep those same players from playing the big game. “I don’t have any injuries to give you, I think we’re healthy and ready to go,” head coach Andy Reid said. “[We] had a good workout yesterday, and we’ll go back out today and get some things done.”
A calf injury limited defensive tackle Chris Jones all of last week in practice but he is expected to be good to go against the 49ers Sunday. Jones played just 23 snaps in the AFC Championship game but should be closer to his average of 46 from the regular season.
Tight end Travis Kelce was sick last week and nursing a knee injury; he will also be ready to go. Safety Jordan Lucas missed practice as well last week but is now in good health. Kansas City are as in one piece as they could be expected to be for the last and most important game of the season. Injuries to Patrick Mahomes, Frank Clark, Jones and others resulted in a rough midseason patch. That their starters are all up and running goes a long way at the best online sportsbooks.
Super Bowl LIV: Chiefs vs. 49ers Odds by MyBookie.ag
|49ers||+1 (-105)||54½ (-110)||EV|
|Chiefs||-1 (-115)||54½ (-110)||-120|
Of course, the Chiefs have shown to have a strong Plan B in case of injuries. Which is something online USA sportsbooks shouldn’t overlook either. For example, rookie wide receiver Mecole Hardman started in two of the four games that Tyreek Hill missed early on in the season. And posted 246 yards and two TDs. Hardman finished the season with 26 receptions for 538 yards and six touchdowns.
Additionally, he averaged 20.7 yards per catch. Matt Moore may not have had so strong a showing. But, subbing for an injured Mahomes, he had a much greater responsibility. And he successfully held the fort during Mahomes’s absence. Moore passed for over 260 yards and at least one TD in each of his two starts. Moreover, he didn’t turn the ball over once.
And speaking of Mahomes, he’s certainly the reason online USA sportsbooks favor KC. Two points is a small difference but it is a difference, and Mahomes makes that difference. Sure, it’s a team effort and whatnot, but the Chiefs as a team are built around Mahomes. He didn’t have as big numbers as his rookie season, but that can hardly be called a regression. Especially when he got the team to the Super Bowl the second time around. Furthermore, Mahomes has stepped up his game in the postseason, when it really counts. He has 615 passing yards, eight TDs and no picks in two games these playoffs.
Compared to 573, three, and zero, respectively, in as many games the previous postseason.
The point is, all things considered, that Mahomes doesn’t have the same pressure to score as he did last season. You know, when the Chiefs had one of the worst defenses in the league. Now the defense doesn’t allow as many yards and points. Which means the offense doesn’t gain as many yards or score as many points either. And that’s a good thing, because it results in precious equilibrium.