Now we know. Super Bowl LVII will feature the Philadelphia Eagles and the Kansas City Chiefs.
The Eagles advanced easily, trouncing the San Francisco 49ers 31-7, while the Chiefs needed late-game heroics from their defense and quarterback Patrick Mahomes to edge the Cincinnati Bengals, 23-20.
The Super Bowl, Feb. 12 at 6:30 p.m. ET at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Ariz., will pit K.C.’s top-ranked offense against Philly’s defense, ranked second overall during the regular season. When possession changes, the Eagles will roll out the No. 3 regular-season offense to face the Chiefs 11th ranked defense.
The stats would seem to give the Eagles an edge, and Vegas agreed, making them slight favorites.
In three prior Super Bowl trips, the Eagles have won once, defeating the New England Patriots in 2018 at Minnesota. The Chiefs won the following year, beating the San Francisco 49ers for the franchise’s second Super Bowl victory.
Each team shares a history with coach Andy Reid, who coached the Eagles for 14 years and has now led the Chiefs for 10.
It’s been a strong stretch for Philadelphia sports; the surprising Phillies reached the World Series this fall, losing in six games to the Houston Astros, while the Sixers currently sit second in the NBA’s Eastern Conference. The Eagles will keep the run going with their fourth trip to the title game.
“You see this city and what kind of passion the fans have for this team,” Eagles coach Nick Sirianni said after the convincing NFC championship victory. “We’re very appreciative of these fans. Just listen to them.”
The Chiefs lost to Green Bay in the inaugural Super Bowl, then won Super Bowl IV in 1970. It took them 50 years to return, but they made back-to-back trips in 2019 and 2020, losing the second to Tampa Bay.
“We were banged up, but they pushed through,” Reid told CBS about his team’s victory over the Bengals. “They sucked it up and our fans helped guide us through. We appreciate the energy.”
The Owner’s Box
Jeffery Lurie, 71, purchased the Eagles in 1994 and has presided over the greatest era in club history. A businessman and film producer who’s worth $4.4 billion, he grew up in Boston, the type of sports nut who held Patriots season tickets from the club’s inception in the AFL in 1960. It’s the third time since he’s owned the team the Eagles have gone to the Super Bowl, having also lost to the Patriots in 2005 with Reid at the helm.
“We’ve got to do this more often,” Lurie said as he was handed the George Halas trophy for winning the NFC.
The Hunt family has owned the Chiefs since the team joined the original AFL in 1960. They are football lifers. Clark Hunt, whose net worth is $2 billion, joined the franchise as chairman in 2005 and took over a year later when his father, Lamar, died. Among his three siblings, Clark became de facto owner and, at 57, remains in that position. With Mahomes, the Chiefs have enjoyed their most successful run since the days of QB Len Dawson and coach Hank Stram. They’ve now hosted the last five AFC title games at Arrowhead Stadium.
“Congratulations to all the players and coaches for bringing home another Lamar Hunt trophy,” Clark Hunt said, after accepting the trophy named after his father for the third time in the past four years.
The NFL salary cap, $208.2 million this past season, creates competitive parity between teams playing in larger and smaller markets and of disparate values.
The league’s most valuable team, the Dallas Cowboys, who are worth $7.6 billion in Sportico’s 2022 valuations, made the playoffs but lost after one win, again.
Meanwhile, their NFC East rivals in Philly reached the ultimate game while ranked ninth in value at $4.7 billion. The AFC-winning Chiefs are ranked 20th at $3.54 billion.
Once the game starts, none of those numbers will matter.