Five Super Bowl Matchups Fans Would Love to See

Ansh Suchdeve and Connor Easterday

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(Photo by: Jae C. Hong/AP)

The NFL season is well underway, and we decided to come up with the five best Super Bowl matchups that fans would love to see for this season. These selections are based solely on who we feel the fans would want to see battling it out in Super Bowl 54. Before we begin, we would like to put out a disclaimer that a single team is only permitted to be featured on this list twice at most.

5. Browns-Bears

(Photo by: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

In this game, two young quarterbacks (Baker Mayfield and Mitchell Trubisky) would face off, and neither signal-caller would be the deciding factor. Defenses would rule the day, as the star-studded Chicago defense would hypothetically matchup well with the Cleveland offense. It would be interesting to see how Baker Mayfield would react to the Bears ruthless front seven, with the likes of Khalil Mack, Roquan Smith, and Akiem Hicks. Bears defensive play-caller, Gary Kubiak, would not let Mayfield rest. Kubiak would apply pressure on nearly every play, using creative blitz packages with Khalil Mack lined up as an edge rusher. The Browns offensive line ranks 20th in the league, according to Pro Football Focus. This would make it an even tougher task for Cleveland to contain the ferocious pass rush of Chicago. However, the Browns offense is no easy feat, as they added superstar wideout Odell Beckham Jr. in a trade with the New York Giants this past offseason. They also will have an elite running back duo with Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Chubb averaged a league-high 4.5 yards after contact per rush last season, according to Pro Football Focus. Overall, this would be a test for how a young offense would fare against a seasoned defense.

Ansh Suchdeve’s Prediction: Browns 24, Bears 17.

Connor Easterday’s Prediction: Bears 23, Browns 20.

 

4. Ravens-Seahawks

(Photo by: Rob Carr/Getty Images)

This matchup would feature two of the most mobile quarterbacks in the NFL, Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson. On the other side of the ball, Baltimore has one of the most well-coached and proven defenses in the league, despite losing linebackers C.J. Mosley and Za’Darius Smith in the offseason. Seattle’s defense, on the other hand, is much less experienced. However, with the addition of former-Texans edge rusher Jadeveon Clowney, they may prove to be much stiffer competition — he generated 21 QB hits in the 2018 season. Moreover, Seattle ran the ball more than any other team last year, on 52.44% of plays, according to Team Rankings. This may prove to be ineffective versus Baltimore’s stout rush defense, as they only allowed 83.3 total rushing yards per game (on average) in the 2018 season, which accounted for third-best in the league. Not to mention, Baltimore signed former Seahawks safety Earl Thomas to a four-year deal in the offseason, and he has proven to be a generational talent over this decade. Furthermore, Seattle’s defense is nothing to write home about, however it is well-coached and has playoff experience. Ultimately, these are two teams with years of playoff history and coaches who have won the Super Bowl, and it very well may come down to which coach out-schemes the other.

Ansh Suchdeve’s Prediction: Seahawks 27, Ravens 24.

Connor Easterday’s Prediction: Ravens 24, Seahawks 21

 

3. Chiefs-Packers

(Photo by: Scott Winters/Icon Sportswire

One emerging star versus one soon-to-be Hall of Fame candidate would headline this contest. This game would be symbolic for many reasons; though, fans would mainly tune in for the powerhouse Chiefs’ offense (featuring Patrick Mahomes, Tyreek Hill, and Travis Kelce) facing off against two-time NFL MVP Aaron Rodgers and stud pass catcher Davante Adams. Interestingly, these two teams are scheduled to face off in week eight of the regular season, which could be a preview of this contest (if both teams reach the Super Bowl). Statistically speaking, Packers lead back, Aaron Jones, led the league in Y/ATT (yards per attempt) with five, last season. Both quarterbacks have historic seasons under their belt. Mahomes, just last year, threw for 50 touchdowns compared to 12 interceptions. Meanwhile, Rodgers passed for 45 touchdowns compared to six interceptions en route to winning the 2011 NFL MVP award. Defensively, the Packers have a fresh look this season. Green Bay acquired edge rushers Za’Darius Smith, Preston Smith, along with safety Adrian Amos in free agency. In the draft, they added Darnell Savage, a steam missile of a safety who can play multiple positions. These additions will give the Packers a chance against the Chiefs’ seemingly unstoppable offense. However, at the end of the day, this contest would come down to the arms of Mahomes and Rodgers carrying their respective teams to victory.

Ansh Suchdeve’s Prediction: Chiefs 38, Packers 28.

Connor Easterday’s Prediction: Chiefs 34, Packers 27.

 

2. Patriots-Saints

(Photo by: Bill Feig/AP)

Unlike the previous matchups, this game would feature two of the best pocket-passers of all-time with the likes of Tom Brady and Drew Brees. Historically, Brady and Brees each have three wins on the other, dating back to 2001 where Brees was a rookie, while Brady became a full-time starting quarterback in the same season. Brady was quoted with saying “I think so highly of him and everything he’s accomplished” in regards to Drew Brees becoming the all time passing yards leader last season, in an interview with USA Today. Brady and Brees clearly have garnered a friendly rivalry over the years. This time around, both quarterbacks are fully equipped with weapons. Brees, in particular, has an arsenal of pass catchers to choose from. Michael Thomas is one of the most reliable wide receivers in football. Last season, he led the league in receptions and also, when targeted, had an 85% chance of coming down with the ball, according to Pro Football Reference. A significant deciding factor in this game may very well be performance in outdoor stadiums. Brees has played the majority of his games in a dome, which many see as an advantage for quarterbacks. However, when outdoors, Brees is significantly worse. Compared to his 69.6 completion percentage in a dome, Brees has a strikingly lower 64.95 percent outdoors. His Passer Rating goes from 104.2 to 91.2, and his Y/A (yards per attempt) goes from 8.08 to 7.14. Meanwhile, with the addition of superstar wide receiver Antonio Brown, the Patriots offense is just on par with the Saints offense. Brady will also have a handful of weapons to use, with Super Bowl 53 MVP Julian Edelman getting better with age, and a returning Josh Gordon from his self-made mental break that he took late in the 2018-2019 season. In conclusion, this game would be won through the air, making the offenses the focal point in the contest.

Ansh Suchdeve’s Prediction: Patriots 31, Saints 27.

Connor Easterday’s Prediction: Patriots 30, Saints 17.

1. Chiefs-Rams

(Photo by: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

Last season, the Kansas City Chiefs played the Los Angeles Rams on Monday Night Football. Both teams were 9-1 heading into the contest, which happened to be tied for the two best records in the league. The final score was a whopping 54-51 shootout, as the Rams escaped with a victory off a late interception thrown by Patrick Mahomes. A rematch would undoubtedly be the most watched Super Bowl in years– with two high-powered offenses coached by offensive masterminds and plenty of talent on the field. Sean McVay has a great amount of respect for Andy Reid and his offense. Especially the talents of Tyreek Hill. “He is unbelievable. You can see it on the tape but until you see it live and in person, you have even more of an appreciation for what a unique talent he is,” McVay said on his ESPN podcast, The McVay Show. There is no question that this would be a high scoring affair, as Kansas City averaged 35.3 points per game in the 2018 season, while Los Angeles averaged 32.9 PPG (Kansas City ranked first, and Los Angeles ranked second in PPG). Defensively, the Rams have all the right pieces, with Aaron Donald rushing through the middle of the pocket (or lined up on the edge, in some cases), Dante Fowler and Michael Brockers setting the edge as outside linebackers, and Aqib Talib and Marcus Peters back deep locking down the receivers. For Kansas City, defense is a bit of a weak point. However, their secondary isn’t to be overlooked, as Tyrann Mathieu and Kendall Fuller combined for four interceptions in the 2018 season. Overall, this matchup would probably consist of another shootout, likewise in the 2018 regular season tilt.

Ansh Suchdeve’s Prediction: Chiefs 45, Rams 41.

Connor Easterday’s Prediction: Chiefs 38, Rams 28