Super Bowl 2023: Unknown bosses who could be important against the Eagles in pursuit of the Lombardi Trophy

With the NFL’s top two – Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles – heading into Super Bowl LVII, it’s going to be a dream showdown on Sunday. The game will also feature some of the biggest names in the nfl, including the league’s two All-Pro quarterbacks, first-team Patrick Mahomes and second-team Jalen Hurts. The duel between Chiefs and Eagles is full of top talent.

However, championships are not always won by the expected heroes.

No one would think it would be Chiefs running back Damien Williams scoring the go-ahead and the clinching touchdowns in the Chiefs’ Super LIV win over the San Francisco 49ers to end the 2019 season. unknowns and Super Bowl LVII will likely provide the same kinds of surprises.

With that in mind, here are five Chiefs who could emerge as surprise keys to victory on Super Bowl Sunday:

Some of the element of surprise is gone from the former Green Bay Packer as he had season-highs in receiving yards (116) and receptions (six) in the AFC Championship, but the first-year boss could still earn the label unknown as he now has as many receiving touchdowns in the postseason (two) as he did in the regular season. If Valdes-Scantling makes an impact on Sunday, it will likely be Patrick Mahomes’ deep ball reception, as he has led the NFL in yards per reception since joining the league in 2018, averaging 17.2 yards per reception. MVS is a huge threat, as 76.2% of his receptions were for a first down or a touchdown, third most in the NFL behind only Dolphins wide receiver Jaylen Waddle (80%) and Browns wide receiver Amari Cooper (78.2%) .

First-Team All-Pro defensive tackle Chris Jones and defensive end Frank Clark get the shine as the guys rack up sacks and pressures, but this defense won’t hold together without Nick Bolton, whose 180 tackles this season were the second most in the entire NFL, just four behind the league lead. He’s the glue on Steve Spagnuolo’s defense, having played 98% of defensive snaps this season. Their shine could come with the Eagles facing fourth with the game on the line because Philadelphia, thanks to quarterback Jalen Hurts, is the best stealth quarterback team in the NFL. They went 31/35 on QB sneaks, the most conversions and tries in the NFL. No other team has attempted more than 20 or converted more than 17. Bolton, being able to make a tackle to end Hurts possession, can turn the game around.

Playing the Eagles will be the ultimate test of the Chiefs’ defensive front, as Philadelphia has the NFL’s best offensive linea group that Aaron Rodgers called “Oone of the best of the last 20 years.” For Kansas City to emerge victorious, the Chiefs need their defensive line to shock the world. As discussed above, Jones and Clark are the Chiefs’ pass rush stars, but rookie George Karlaftis, the 30th overall pick in the O The 2022 NFL Draft will likely need to play like a Pro Bowler. He’s shown some promise as of late, recording at least half a sack in seven of the last nine games, and he’s just one of two rookies to have at least six sacks (6.0 ) and eight tackles-for-loss (eight) this season, joining second overall pick and Detroit Lions defensive end Aidan Hutchinson Karlaftis has also displayed better skills in that area, with at least one tackle-for-loss in eight of the last nine games.

The Chiefs’ generally reliable kicker had the worst season of his career, scoring less than 88% of his first-team goals, converting 18 of 24 attempts in the regular season, good for a rate of 75%. However, he has displayed an ability to bounce back in critical moments, making all 10 of his shots during this year’s playoffs, a perfect 5-5 on field goals and extra points, including the game-winning 45-yarder. with three seconds left in the AFC Championship Game to send Kansas City back to the Super Bowl. Due to his struggles this regular season, he deserves to be included as an under-the-radar X-factor. The Chiefs’ two playoff wins have come by one possession, so Butker has a very real chance of being called up to make the difference on Super Bowl Sunday.

McDuffie, the Chiefs’ 21st overall pick in the 2022 NFL Draft, has suffered a hamstring injury that has seen him miss six games this season. However, his 51% completion percentage allowed in the regular season was ranked fifth among rookies with 25 or more passes thrown. He still doesn’t have an interception in his career, so if he shows up for the first time, he could turn Kansas City’s big game around. The Chiefs secondary will have to play a near-perfect game to slow down AJ Brown, Dallas Goedert and DeVonta Smith, putting McDuffie in a pivotal role on Super Bowl Sunday.

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