The Super Bowl matchup is set. The Philadelphia Eagles defeated the San Francisco 49ers 31-7 before the Kansas City Chiefs knocked off the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20 to set the stage for this highly intriguing championship game. It's a classic setup between the best roster in the NFL in the Eagles against the best quarterback in the NFL in Patrick Mahomes. Super Bowl Odds point in favor of the Eagles as they are under a field goal favorite in the spread.
Mahomes is set to win his second MVP award as he led the NFL in passing yards, touchdowns, and QBR. He was also the highest rated quarterback by EPA. It goes without saying that he's the best quarterback the Eagles have faced this season, and their defense has shown some cracks at times. It stems from their miscommunication on the back end, particularly when they're in their traditional zone defense.
We saw it in Week 16 when Dak Prescott completed 24 of 24 passes for 300 yards against the Eagles' zone defense per Next Gen Stats. The Eagles surrendered 40 total points in that game, allowing the Cowboys to finish eight of their ten drives with points. That type of defense would prove incredibly problematic against Mahomes as the bread and butter of the Chiefs' offense is finding gaps in zone defense and Mahomes delivering accurate passes with touch and precision.
On the other side of the ball, the Chiefs could be in trouble against Philly's rushing offense. Kansas City ranked just 21st in adjusted line yards on defense while the Eagles were sixth in the same metric on offense. Overall, the Chiefs were 16th in run defense EPA and 17th in DVOA. We've seen their run defense get gashed repeatedly at times this season.
In the NFC Championship, the Eagles gained 148 rushing yards on the 49ers who ranked second in both run defense EPA and DVOA, so they should have plenty of success against the Chiefs' mediocre run defense. I'm intrigued by the Chiefs' defensive personnel choices here. They've used dime personal on 30% or more of plays in four of their last five games compared to 3 of their first 14, per Next Gen Stats.
That dime personnel package has helped them rank second in defensive success rate against the pass in the playoffs, but it leaves them more vulnerable against the run. If they play with extra defensive backs against the Eagles, we can certainly expect them to take advantage. However, if they go with heavier personnel, Jalen Hurts has elite pass-catchers to help him take advantage of Kansas City's pass defense.
Overall, you're looking at two of the best teams in the NFL this season. They were both top five in overall DVOA. The Eagles are more balanced, ranking top six on offense and defense, but the Chiefs ranked first in offensive DVOA by a sizable margin. We're set for a fascinating Super Bowl, and you can find full coverage for the big game on our site and YouTube channel.
Get updated Eagles Super Bowl Odds and Chiefs Super Bowl Odds throughout kickoff.