The NFL season is finally coming to a close and we're celebrating the biggest day on the sports calendar by providing some Super Bowl 54 betting predictions for 49ers vs. Chiefs in Miami on February 2 at Hard Rock Stadium!
Super Bowl Sunday has become far more than a game, it's really a spectacle that commands the attention of millions around the world. But take away the two weeks of hype, the extra commercial breaks, and the halftime show, and it's about two teams with decades-long traditions in the sport battling for the title in the NFL's 100th season.
The Kansas City Chiefs (12-4) advanced after appearing the AFC title game for the second consecutive season while the San Francisco 49ers (13-3) ran through the NFC and are looking to complete a phenomenal turnaround after going 4-12 in 2018. Now let's get to the odds and make our pick for who wins the Super Bowl this year!
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49ers vs. Chiefs Picks: Kansas City Slight Favorites On Super Bowl 54 Betting Line
The AFC champion Chiefs opened as 1.5-point favorites over the NFC champion 49ers at nearly all NJ betting sites including SugarHouse, which rewards players with up to $250 FREE with your first deposit using a SugarHouse Sportsbook promo code!
With the game being played at a neutral site and between two fairly evenly-matched teams, it's no surprise that the Super Bowl 2020 betting line would feature a small spread. At just 1.5 points, it's very likely the number won't even come into play and whichever team covers the ML will cover the number as well. Also check out our Super Bowl prop bet predictions if you are interesting in making those types of fun wagers as well.
Super Bowl 2020 Preview: Where To Lean With Your 49ers vs. Chiefs Betting Picks
All Super Bowl predictions are difficult since we're normally talking about two of the best teams in the league but this game feels especially difficult to call, hence the tiny spread. San Francisco dominated the trenches on both sides to get here while the Chiefs relied on an explosive offense to erase a couple of slow starts. So after two weeks off, what does that mean for our Super Bowl LIV pick?
Super Bowl 54 Preview: Keys To 49ers vs. Chiefs
Both teams come into this game with obvious strengths and it's set up a few very interesting matchups on both sides of the ball. To help break things down, we've listed a few keys to Super Bowl 2020 that will help decide the winner of the game:
Chiefs' Offense vs. 49ers' Defense
This matchup features two of the brightest assistant coaches in football this season with Chiefs OC Eric Bienemy and 49ers DC Robert Saleh, both of which are expected to be NFL head coaches at some point.
For the Niners, it's about dominating on the defensive line and getting pressure without having to blitz extra players. After registering the fifth-most sacks during the regular season, this defense has produced nine more in two playoff games, with three coming from the soon-to-be defensive rookie of the year in Nick Bosa. Pressuring all-world QB Patrick Mahomes is likely the only way to reproduce the success of this postseason thus far.
Bienemy's offense won't be like facing the Vikings and Packers, however, two offenses whose success depends on running the ball. Kansas City doesn't need the running game to put up points (although it helps) thanks to Mahomes' ability to make all the throws in the book.
For what it's worth, the Chiefs did top 100 yards on the ground n both playoff games, but Mahomes finding weapons like Travis Kelce and Tyreek Hill is what obviously gives the 49ers a ton to think about here.
49ers' Offense vs. Chiefs Defense
The 49ers rushed for 285 yards on Green Bay, with 220 of them and four touchdowns coming from Raheem Mostert's incredible performance. Regardless of the situation, the 49ers ran it down the Packers' throat.
A repeat of this puts Kansas City in an awful position because the offense will be on the sideline, and Kyle Shanahan knows that. The Niners ran it 42 times in the NFC title game and help the ball for nearly 40 minutes against Minnesota, which is the recipe they need vs. KC in an area of the game in which they have a big advantage.
To the Chiefs' credit, they were up for the task against Tennessee, holding Derrick Henry to just 69 yards on the ground. The situation in the 2020 Super Bowl isn't much different against another team you know wants to establish the run game. This is still a flawed defense, but DVOA metrics from Football Outsiders do show a steady progression this season.
If Kansas City does sell out to stop the run, the question becomes whether Shanahan lets Jimmy Garoppolo let it rip, which we assume he would. Whether that leads to success against an improved defensive backfield for the Chiefs is another question.
Success In The Red Zone
This can be said for any game, but this one especially. Kansas City can't afford to leave points on the table and settle for field goals, and San Francisco can't really afford to get into the run-and-gun shootout that the Chiefs have won two straight weeks. The 49ers are also going to need some points of their own and may need the passing game in order to do it.
Perhaps surprisingly, the Chiefs may have an advantage here. The vaunted San Francisco defense (though currently in amazing form) struggled during the regular season in opponent red zone scoring percentage, ranking 25th in the NFL. On the other side, Kansas City was in the top 10. The Chiefs also finished a higher percentage of red zone drives with touchdowns, so whichever defense bends and doesn't break could be the difference.
Coaching Battle Between Kyle Shanahan and Andy Reid
Storylines involving the coaches are an annual favorite of the mainstream media going into the Super Bowl, but this matchup is especially interesting as both men are looking to fight off some demons.
Andy Reid is a future Hall of Fame coach with a so-so playoff history looking to cement his legacy with a title. Kyle Shanahan is the young, hotshot coach of the year candidate who previously was the offensive coordinator for the Falcons' gut-wrenching defeat in Super Bowl 51 against the Patriots.
San Francisco is committed to running the ball and playing defense while winning in the trenches. Kansas City wants to give its Pro Bowl quarterback some time to find one of his seemingly infinite number of weapons. How each coach and their respective staffs handle the strengths of its opponent is going to play a major role, since it's unlikely one coach will allow the other to win by doing all of the exact same things that got them here.
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Super Bowl 54 Prediction: Why Chiefs Beat 49ers In Miami
Let me go ahead and say I was wrong about San Francisco, which carved through Green Bay with even more ease than Minnesota in a convincing NFC championship performance. The 49ers have won in dominant fashion and are probably the only team capable of slowing Kansas City's offense as it's currently running.
That said, the Chiefs are the Super Bowl 2020 betting pick as slight favorites. Whoever said defense wins championships may have been right, but they didn't face a fully-stocked Patrick Mahomes offense, either. We are taking the best player on the field to make a few special plays and help AFC champion Kansas City win its first title since Super Bowl IV.
Commonly-trusted metrics from Football Outsiders measures weighted DVOA, which once broken down reveals the 49ers' pass defense has actually come back to earth after it's torrid start to the season. We mentioned the likes of Kelce and Hill, but the Chiefs' offense is built for Mahomes to spread the ball around through the air in the event that San Francisco keys on both players.
Mahomes found eight receivers against Houston and six in the AFC title game as he topped 600 yards and accounted for eight passing touchdowns. He's also run for 106 yards and found the endzone thanks to his mobility, something the 49ers haven't dealt with so far this postseason.
Kansas City's defensive approach to Derrick Henry proves a belief that Raheem Mostert and the running game won't have the type of success we saw in the NFC championship game. Though Garoppolo is a threat under center that Ryan Tannehill isn't, the Chiefs' best bet on defense is for force Jimmy G to beat them.
The Chiefs have also started each of the past two games sluggish, and we are betting it doesn't happen a third time in the same postseason.
Pick: Kansas City Chiefs ML -128, -1.5 Points (-110) - Make Super Bowl 54 Picks At SugarHouse!
Super Bowl Over Under Predictions: Will 49ers vs. Chiefs Game Reach The High Total?
In addition to the moneyline and total, 2020 Super Bowl totals predictions are also very popular for the big game. After huge offensive performances from both teams this postseason, the total is set at 54 points at most PA betting sites. This total and countless prop bets are available if you sign up in Pennsylvania with a SugarHouse PA promo code, which can also help you claim $250 FREE!
The over may seem like a lock to some but if you remember what happened last season, you may have to rethink your strategy. The Patriots and Rams both had explosive offenses and allowed points on defense, which led to a total that surpassed 56 points for Super Bowl 53. The game ended 13-3 and bettors were shocked as the under was an unbelievable easy win.
Super Bowl 53 also reinforced a trend that recent matchups with high totals tend to be lower-scoring games than previously expected. Four games have gone to kickoff with a total of at least 50 points in the past 10 years, and three of those have wound up falling short of the total. Each went under by at least 8.5 points as well.
This year's game will have more scoring than last year's for sure, but don't expect it to be the shootout of the century. First consider that both teams are coming off a bye and won't have played a real game in two weeks, then think about the game plans.
San Francisco is still going to run the ball to keep the Kansas City offense off the field and control the game. The Chiefs' offense moves quickly, but it also is going to need to give its own defense a breather and may opt to slow down as the game moves along. Even if it doesn't, the 49ers' defense isn't likely to allow so many big plays that this one reaches an inflated total based on earlier games this postseason.
For these reasons, take the under and not the over as part of your Super Bowl 54 best bets.
Pick: Under 54 Points (-110) - Place Super Bowl 54 Bets At SugarHouse!
Super Bowl 2020 Betting: How Do Super Bowl Squares Work?
It's common for viewers of the Super Bowl to look for alternative ways to get invested in the game other than traditional sports betting, and that's where Super Bowl squares come into play. This is a fun and interactive way to get everyone at your Super Bowl party involved with a rooting interest in the biggest game of the year, and you can still win monetary prizes for very little cost!
If you're wondering how Super Bowl squares work, take a look at our step-by-step description of how these pools operate:
Step 1 - Our printable Super Bowl squares template version is a 10-by-10 grid with 100 individual boxes. Assign the two Super Bowl teams to the blank grid, the first team on the top and the second one on the side of the template.
Step 2 - You will need to assign a price per square. This will determine the prize pool. Start with $1 per square up to as much as your participants are willing to pay to get in on the action, and allow players to buy multiple squares to fill out the board.
Step 3- Once the entry fee is determined, decide on your payouts. Most pools declare winners for the score at the end of the first three quarters in addition to the final whistle, though some pay out at just halftime and at the end of the game. Prizes for the winners vary depending on your setup but usually, the first and third quarters will have matching payouts with an increase for halftime and an even larger boost for the final score of the game.
Step 4- Long before the game kicks off, the players will write their names down in the boxes of their choosing until the entire grid is full. Let each player pick whichever square they want, so long as it hasn't been chosen by another player.
Step 5- Use a random number generator to pick numbers from 0 to 9 and list them at the edges of the grid to cover all columns and rows, which will assign a digit for each team to each of the 100 boxes.
Step 6- Gather as many people as you can together to watch the big game in Miami. This is meant to be a fun and interactive game, so it's best enjoyed in a larger group, especially if everyone has a scoring outcome to root for.
For more advice and helpful information that could help you win some money on the last game of the NFL football season, visit our Super Bowl betting guide!