2020-21 Super Bowl Predictions (Game, Fantasy, Player Props)…
All I can think of going into this game is – remember when Tom Brady first signed with Tampa Bay and it was intriguing but the cool football thing to say was that fans were getting too overheated about Brady-to-TB and that they were dumb to think they’d even sniff the Super Bowl?
Well, here we are.
I would not bet this game with the utmost confidence because Tampa Bay is good enough, with a few breaks, to win this game. I think Kansas City is going to win…I think if they played this game a hundred times, the Chiefs would win 80+ times (as I think most people would tend to believe about this game outcome)…but anything can happen in the wide-open passing games of 2020-21.
Why I’m pro-Chiefs for a bet here, if I were advising…
1) The Chiefs, top-to-bottom, are better than the Bucs…because 2021 Mahomes is exponentially better than 2021 Brady, and quarterback is everything.
2) Andy Reid’s track record with two weeks to prepare is terrific.
3) I personally believe that Tom Brady was getting a ton of (penalty) calls his way all season, especially down the stretch and through the playoffs – from holding being allowed to protect him to pass interference to save him on downfield passes. An extra 1-2-3 calls or non-calls in a game can change everything. In the Super Bowl, in such a massive high-profile event…I don’t believe there will be a Bucs bias. Patrick Mahomes has as much gravitas as Brady these days.
My biggest hesitation from getting more excited about the Chiefs to win/cover is that they’re down two key O-Linemen.
If you visited me from the future today and told me the Bucs won by 3-7 points on a final drive TD with seconds remaining…I wouldn’t be shocked. Ditto KC winning the same way.
If you visited me from the future today and told me one of the teams won by 15+…I would assume it was KC and not really consider it could be TB pulling that type of win off.
I believe the Chiefs are a better coached team and more likely to play their game and have Tampa Bay self-destruct, than the reverse happening. However, the Bucs defense flashes moments of the most menacing defense in the league – if that unit comes to play, gets a few breaks, you never know. It’s more likely KC plays ‘their game’ than the Bucs do…which is likely what most people would believe going in.
If I were to bet it -- I’d lay the -3.0 and take KC and bet the over for scoring…thinking the rain will neutralize some of the pass rush get off and let these QBs have a hair more time to throw, and that they will both throw at each other and eschew field goals and punts any chance they can.
But I’m not betting the game outcomes because I am way more into player prop betting…and we will get into that in the last segment.
Fantasy Football Predictions:
QB = I’m with Mahomes over Brady…I think Brady could fall flat here and get blown out while having a rough time of it. More likely that happens to Brady than Mahomes – Brady facing playoff teams this season has been a small-scale disaster of lower yardage totals and high turnovers.
RB = Tough to run on Tampa Bay, but if the Chiefs go there a little bit -- I’m thinking Darrel Williams is much more trusted right now than Clyde Edwards-Helaire. Not only as a runner but as a pass blocker.
TB should try to heat up Ronald Jones, but Bruce Arians is stubborn…and he’s in love with Leonard Fournette’s effort right now. So, if I could have any one RB for FF this game…it would be Fournette for the most carries and definitely the most receptions. Brady does not trust RoJo in the passing game, but he does Fournette.
WR = The #1 thing NFL teams plan for is not ‘to win the game’…no, it’s ‘not losing’ or ‘not getting embarrassed on TV’. With that, 100% of the Bucs defenders will follow Tyreek Hill to start the game…and thus everything else on KC could go off, and then the Bucs will adjust and then Tyreek will start to pop.
There is probably more talk in Tampa on ‘how we will stop Tyreek’ than there is ‘how we will take it to KC’.
There will be a window for one of Sammy Watkins or Mecole Hardman to rise up here. I think Hardman is the X-factor for FF output in this game.
TE = Do we even have to discuss the TE play here?
DEF = Definitely the KC-DST. Brady is a turnover machine against better defenses in 2020-21. He has gone full scale Ryan Fitzpatrick – smartly-timed/strategic deep balls on 3rd downs to make big plays or get a P.I. call or go incomplete…and if picked, then it’s like a punt anyway.
PK = Butker, because KC will kick FGs. The Bucs enter the game not wanting to kick a field goal at all, as a plan. KC won’t have the same mindset.
Player Prop Bets:
I have a few prop bets I will play light, for fun…for the long shot nature. But, for profit, I am only betting on ONE specific player prop. I think there exists ONE prop bet that is a guarantee…
Tom Brady to throw an interception 0.5 ‘over’ (-190). I will basically pay the $2 to win $3. Can’t be worse than my GameStop stock purchased last week. Just like the Green Bay game, my best bets were against Brady and especially him to throw a pick. He’s going to do so here…it’s his new style of play. As I mentioned last segment…he’s doing a Ryan Fitzpatrick version of football, which is smart – chuck it deep a lot and hope for the positive (catch or PI) or neutral (incomplete), which is 90%+ likely to occur…and live with a few turnovers throwing deep on 3rd & long, making them like a punt.
You figure Brady is going to have to throw a lot in this game, and he’s going to turn it over…I bet he does 2-3x.
Including the playoffs, Brady has faced 8 playoff teams. His INTs in those 8 games (in chronological order): 2-0-0-3-2-0-0-3.
If you only look at playoff teams he’s faced with a winning record (eliminate CHI and WSH), then: 2-0-3-2-0-3 (10 INTs in six games).
I have two other prop bets of longer shot interest…
#1) There are no odds on it on DraftKings or FanDuel, but if/when/wherever I can get them…I want the (likely) ‘over’ 0.5 carries for both Mecole Hardman (a carry in four of his last 5 games) as well as Tyreek (at least one carry in four of his last 6 games).
#2) The Mecole Hardman props…
Hardman has become more of a limited touch weapon lately…as teams over-cover Tyreek, it only makes sense for a few touches for the speedster Hardman. Now, we know Hardman is a terrible WR in general – but he has ALL the benefits here…Mahomes and all the Tyreek attention.
Hardman has two TDs in his last five games. He has four carries in his last 5 games, two of them 20+ yard jaunts.
I like, not love, Hardman ‘over’ 28.5 yards (-112).
I really like the (+2500) odds on Hardman making the first catch and (+2500) on him being the first player to 10+ rushing yards in the game.
Tyreek is (+2000) for the first player to 10+ rushing yards. I like that too.
I think one of KC’s first 1-2-3 rushing plays will be a jet sweep to either Tyreek or Hardman, or both.
*I was on the Bet The Close (BTC) podcast THU night for recording to be released FRI/SAT, and we discussed several bets from the National Anthem over/under, to an interesting take on the prop of whether the first kickoff would be returned or downed, and many other things – but BTC Chris brought up the prop on Devin White leading the game in total tackles…and the more we talked, the more I liked that prop too.
We’ll post a link to the BTC show when it is available.
Whatever angle you have in this game – just watching the spectacle and/or fantasy playoff cash on the line and/or game and/or player prop bets – good luck and enjoy the day. I will have my Super Bowl recap extravaganza, per usual, published Monday night ET.
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