Thursday, February 4, 2021

NFL Weekly Predictions: Super Bowl LV

By Jeffrey Boswell

Note: the quotes in this article are fictional.

Tampa Bay vs. Kansas City (-3)

Tom Brady outgunned Aaron Rodgers at Lambeau Field, leading the Buccaneers to a 31-26 win. Brady will be appearing in his 10th Super Bowl, and first with an NFC team.

"Tampa," Brady said, "here we come. Or better yet, 'Here we are.' We're the first team to play the Super Bowl in its home stadium. That's something else I can rub in the face of the Patriots. And speaking of 'rubbing,' Robert Kraft should know that Jupiter, Florida is less than 185 miles from Tampa. For him, that's handy information.

"In regards to the Packers, let's be clear, there's no way a Tom Brady-quarterbacked team would settle for a field goal down 8 points. Heck, even six is not enough for me. Winning my seventh Super Bowl would add another level of greatness to my legacy. An extra 'point' if you will.

"This will be my first Super Bowl facing an AFC team. Oh, the lengths I'll go to avoid the New York Giants.

"And speaking of the Giants, what's this I hear about my Super Bowl nemesis Eli Manning hawking Frank's RedHot? I've heard many NFL players say, 'I'll put that 'D' in anything'; this is the first time I've heard one say, 'I'll put that 'S' on everything.'

"If we beat the Chiefs, it may go down as the greatest playoff run by an NFL quarterback in history. It will mean I completed the 'Drew Brees/Aaron Rodgers/Patrick Mahomes' gauntlet. If you want to get technical, it will mean I completed the 'Taylor Heinicke/Drew Brees/Aaron Rodgers/Patrick Mahomes' gauntlet."

The Chiefs defended their AFC title with a commanding 38-24 win over the Bills at Arrowhead Stadium. Patrick Mahomes passed for 325 yards and 3 TD's, and Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce combined for 290 yards receiving.

"We were clearly the better team," Mahomes said. "Seriously, I think the Bills were just overmatched. In other words, they didn't bring enough to the 'table,' as opposed to the Bills Mafia, who always bring enough to the table, with 'enough' being 'weight,' because the table always collapses under it.

"Josh Allen may have been overwhelmed by the gravity of the situation. How else can you explain a QB taking multiple sacks for losses of 10 yards or greater? I certainly don't think we can count on Brady getting the 'jitters.' Brady rarely 'shakes,' and when he does, it's after congratulating you on a season that was great, and also over.

"Andy Reid is looking forward to matching wits with Bruce Arian. Those two have a lot in common. They both love innovative offense, they're both rather portly, and neither has ever spoken of 'biting someone's kneecaps.' If you're talking about 'biting kneecaps,' you're either recalling your days as an Oakland Raiders in the 1970s, overdosing on Molly, or Dan Campbell. Personally, I'd rather be either of the first two."

The Buccaneers win the opening coin toss, and despite the taunts of Chiefs captains, refuse to say the word "defer." Tampa drives to the Kansas City 39, where Brady converts a sneak on fourth down to avoid the dreaded field goal. The Bucs later cash in with a Brady TD pass to Cameron Brate.

The Chiefs respond immediately, as Mahomes connects with Le'Veon Bell on a 11-yard TD pass. K.C. eschews the extra point kick and goes for the two-point conversion, succeeding on Mahomes' run. It's 8-7 Chiefs, and the precedent is set: whichever team kicks the most, whether that be field goals, extra points, or punts, will lose the game.

The Weeknd takes the field for the halftime show, and immediately addresses the COVID-19 situation with 2015's "Can't Feel My Face," and addresses one of Donald Trump's solutions to it, with 2019's "Blinding Lights."

The Weeknd then honors Josh Gordon with his version of Britney Spears' "Oops! I Did It Again."

Then, the Texans Deshaun Watson joins the Weeknd for a rendition of Johnny Paycheck's "Take This Job and Shove It."

Matthew Stafford and Jared Goff then join The Weeknd via Zoom for a take on Bob Dylan's "Most Likely You Go Your Way and I'll Go Mine."

Finally, The Weeknd welcomes Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion onstage for a song about Matt LaFleur and field goals, called "WAP (What a Pussy)."

In the second half, neither team leads by more than seven points, and ultimately, a tipped Mahomes's pass results in a Bucs interception, sealing Tampa's storybook ending.

Buccaneers win, 33-31.

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