49ers: Super Bowl LIV game breakdown and prediction

49ers, Super Bowl LIV (Photo by Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images)
49ers, Super Bowl LIV (Photo by Cliff Hawkins/Getty Images) /

The San Francisco 49ers will meet the powerhouse Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LIV on Sunday. Let’s take one final look at the game and give a last-minute prediction.

The biggest event in sports, Super Bowl LIV, gets underway on Sunday and the San Francisco 49ers find themselves 60 minutes away from their first championship since 1994.

How will they match-up against the electric Kansas City Chiefs offense and a 24-year-old MVP quarterback who many believe is the best in the game at this very moment? Let’s take a look at this game and make a prediction.

In the age of new-school offense, heavy passing game plans, and regressing offensive line play, we see the Chiefs as the prototypical “future” of what the NFL is heading towards with more of a spread offense look.

The game is getting younger and faster and better athletes are playing the quarterback position. Patrick Mahomes embodies that sentiment to a tee.

He has one of the best arms ever seen on a football field and has arguably surpassed the great Aaron Rodgers as the greatest talent the NFL has witnessed.

And his team is a perfect fit for him as it’s loaded with elite athletes in the receiving core and an offensive guru head coach in

Andy Reid

who’s still evolving in his play-calling even after two decades of being a head coach in this league.

The Chiefs run a high-powered offense that had the ability to explode at any time as we saw in their Divisional Round game against the Houston Texans where they rallied back from 24-0 to outscore their opponents 51-7 from thereon.

Mahomeboy and the Chiefs are hot at the exact right time to be. I find it highly unlikely anybody can completely halt Mahomes, Travis Kelce, and Tyreek Hill from putting up at least a 20-spot on the scoreboard.

Then again, we are talking about the 2019 49ers here — the number one pass defense in all of football this season with a pass rush stacked with first-rounders and the least-targeted cornerback in the game in Richard Sherman.

As we look at the Chiefs and their new-age style of play, we must also take pause to appreciate the feeling of nostalgia for smashmouth football the 49ers are playing this year.

This Niners team runs the ball down your throat better than any team in football right now. And it’s not Derrick Henry pounding you downhill.

It’s crafted Kyle Shanahan runs and smoke-and-mirrors misdirection with the usage of the wide receivers in motion and the lead blocking of the best fullback in the game in Kyle Juszczyk and/or the extra man on the line in the form of the best blocking tight end in the game in George Kittle.

The 49ers are a power running team at the core, but they dress up their play-calling so garishly that it appears to be on the level of innovation that the Baltimore Ravens ran this year with Lamar Jackson at the quarterback position.

Offense wins games, but defense wins championships. And along with defense comes the ability to run the ball and play physical football on offense. The 49ers are built to win a championship and I think they get it done in this game 31-27.

Historically, Andy Reid in championship games isn’t too good of a mix. And although the Chiefs have played much better on defense the second half of the season, they still don’t hold a candle to what the 49ers are able to do on that side of the ball.

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The way I think this game will go is that it’ll be slow-paced in the first half and Mahomes will have a lot of problems trying to move the ball on the Niners.

San Francisco will go into the break with a slight lead but come the second half, Mahomes will start to find his groove and this game will become a Mahomes versus Jimmy Garoppolo showdown.

But even though Mahomes is the second coming, I actually think it will be Garoppolo who takes the day. He’s a quarterback that’s been very overlooked this year since his team runs the ball as much as anybody in the league.

Even in the NFC Championship Game, Garoppolo threw the ball only eight times as Raheem Mostert carried the day on the ground.

Garoppolo has had his share of down moments this year. He’s turned the ball over a bunch of times and has been viewed as the weak link of this mighty Niners team — I know I certainly viewed him as that.

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But you know what, if Jimmy G is your weak link, you’re doing very good.

We saw what he did in the two Arizona Cardinals games, the second Los Angeles Rams game, and the Saints game in New Orleans.

Don’t lose sight of the fact that Garoppolo can carry this team when he’s called upon to do so and that the 49ers have found multiple ways to beat teams this year outside of their bread and butter “run-heavy, lean-on-the-defense” game plan.

Between the two quarterbacks featured in Super Bowl LIV, Mahomes is definitely the better of the two, and it may very well be his time to start a string of Super Bowls. But I think it’s going to be the overall better team and Garoppolo hoisting that Lombardi Trophy on Sunday night.

Once again, offense wins games but defense wins championships. I’ll take the better all-around team that plays tougher, hard-nosed football, and has not one but TWO Shanahans in the driver’s seat orchestrating the play-calling.

It just feels like this is the 49ers’ game to win. It just seems like the Chiefs, though they’ve gotten crazy hot, have caught a lot of breaks en route to this Super Bowl with Tom Brady and Lamar Jackson both being upset early.

Next. 49ers: Positional analysis of the Super Bowl LIV matchup with the Chiefs. dark

I’ll reiterate. 31-27, 49ers take Super Bowl LIV on the back of a strong first half from their defense and a masterful second-half performance from Jimmy Garoppolo.