If you ask the panel of experts convened by the National Football League’s official site, the competitors in Super Bowl LVI are likeliest to be a repeat of two years prior when the K.C. Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers faced off in the biggest game of the year.
If that’s true, then Chiefs Kingdom has to feel good about that matchup considering they won their first championship in 50 years last time around and they’re even more loaded for another run in 2021.
NFL.com recently listed their votes for Super Bowl favorites for the 2021 season, and the Chiefs came out at the very top with 11 votes. Next up were the Niners with five total votes. Coming in third (in a three-way tie) were the Buffalo Bills, the L.A. Rams, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers with three votes apiece.
The Chiefs and 49ers earned the most predictive votes to win Super Bowl LVI.
The entries here are very interesting, although not as much so for the Chiefs. After all, Chiefs Kingdom is used to hearing by now that their favorite team is the odds-on favorite to win it all this year. That’s also likely to be the case going forward for the next few years since the team’s Super Bowl window is wide open with Patrick Mahomes at the helm and Andy Reid calling the shots.
As for the 49ers, it’s not even clear who their starting quarterback will be at season’s end, and projecting them to do so well is to place high expectations on Trey Lance’s shoulders. The Niners have offensive playmakers and a stout defense, but the most important position on the field is the one most unsettled, so it will be interesting to see if these lofty ideals are actualized.
The Bills deserve respect and they get some here from voters, but unfortunately for them, the road to even competing in the Super Bowl runs through the Chiefs atop the AFC. As for the Rams, it will be a major plot point this season to see if Matthew Stafford is the answer to the Rams’ woes and if he performs that much better than Jared Goff. It’s also notable that the Bucs only garnered three votes despite being the defending champs and returning all 22 starters.
As for the rest of the list, three more teams were picked to win the Super Bowl by the panel of experts and it gets worse as it goes on. The Green Bay Packers were up next and the only other team with multiple believers. From there, the Cleveland Browns were named by former Browns tackle Joe Thomas (of course). But then there’s the Las Vegas Raiders—yes, the Raiders—with a single vote, gifted by a member of the Carr family. Of course.