Category: World

Super Bowl 54 in Numbers: Kansas City Chiefs Vs. San Francisco 49ers

Super Bowl 54 will take place on Sunday, February 2, between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers, at Hard Rock Stadium in Miami, Florida.

By: Riley Gillespie-Wilson

The stage is set for Super Bowl 54 between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers. The Chiefs’ high-flying offence, which generated the second-most passing yards per-game in the playoffs, will have a tough test in a 49ers defence that gave up the fewest passing-yards per-game in the regular season this year. That’s not to say the 49ers offense is anything to sneeze at, either. They were actually the fourth-ranked offense this season, while the Chiefs were the sixth. 

The 49ers won the last meeting between the two teams, 27-17, but that was an August 24 preseason meeting. Clearly, there’s a lot more on the line this time around. All in all, fans have agreed this has the makings to be one great Super Bowl. Why? Let’s go by the numbers. 

25: 49ers coach Kyle Shannahan has been known throughout his career as an offensive guru. However, his defense gave up just 25 yards per-drive this season. (including playoffs) That’s the second-best in the NFL behind only a New England Patriots unit that stifled offenses all year long. The 49ers’ defense has simply had an incredibly easy time getting the opponent off the field this season. 

125.2: The 49ers ‘D’ will have a handful in facing Patrick Mahomes, though. 2018 MVP Mahomes clearly likes to throw the deep ball, and he’s very, very good at it. He completed 36 of 69 passes of 20 yards or more this season, connecting on a league-leading 15 majors and just two interceptions. That gave him a league-leading 125.2 passer rating on these throws. For comparison’s sake, the league average on the deep ball was just 85.7. Mahomes has a plethora of weapons at his disposal, and Tyreek Hill’s lightning-like speed opens up the lengthy strike for him. 

36.4: Mahomes may want to avoid one cornerback on the vaunted 49ers defence. Richard Sherman has given opposing quarterbacks nightmares all season long. QB’s targeting Sherman have just a 36.4 passer rating in the regular season and playoffs combined. Crazily enough, that rating is lower than a quarterback gets for throwing an incompletion on every throw. (39.6) That’s just a bonkers stat. Sherman will likely be tasked with covering the speedster Hill, which will put that impressive rating to the test, as Hill racked up the 15th most receiving yards this season, but the fourth most yards per-reception. 

3.2: Speaking of Hill, he is lethally quick. He averaged 3.2 yards of separation from his primary defender at the time of the catch this year. That’s tied for the tenth-biggest gap among receivers this season. Apparently, though, Hill was only warming up in the regular season. He increased that digit to 3.5 in the AFC Championship game against the Tennessee Titans. 

80: Sherman isn’t the only cog in the 49ers defence Mahomes and company will have to lookout for. Rookie Nick Bosa was the first 49ers rookie voted into the Pro Bowl since 2007, (Patrick Willis) and for good reason. Bosa’s 80 quarterback pressures were the most by a rookie pass rusher since Pro Football Focus started tracking them in 2006. Bosa had the sixth-most quarterback pressures among edge-defenders this season. He will be a threat to bring down Patrick Mahomes in this game, if the Chiefs struggle to contain him, like most offensive lines did this season. 

.815: Football fans around the world are debating whether Chiefs head coach Andy Reid needs this win to cement his legacy. One thing is for sure: he’s in a good position to do so. When Reid rests, Reid wins. His teams are 22-5, (an .815 win percentage) during the regular season and playoffs, immediately following a week off. Whether it’s just the rest, good film study, a little bit of both, or something else entirely, Reid sure knows how to make the most of a bye week. 

38.9%: If the Chiefs can get past the stifling coverage of Sherman and into the red-zone, there’s one man in particular they’ll be looking for. Including the playoffs, Travis Kelce’s 24 red-zone targets rank second in the league, and 14 of Kansas City’s 36 targets (38.9%) in goal-to-go yardage have landed in Kelce’s hands. That’s the highest ratio in the NFL. 

Whether it’s Reid’s bye-week magic, Tyreek Hill’s separation speed, Richard Sherman’s lockdown coverage, or another factor that decides Super Bowl 54, the numbers dictate this being one spectacular game. The one number not mentioned: 1: the number of chances each team gets at this game. One tilt for all the marbles. Super Bowl 54. 

TWEET: Beyond the players, and the halftime show, there are the defining digits. Super Bowl 54 by the numbers.

Offense or Defense Wins Championships? Chiefs, 49ers, Super Bowl 54 Preview

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Last years MVP Patrick Mahomes Flexing after his Chiefs dispatch of the Titans

By: Austin Maki

  The National Football League will wrap up its 100th season in Miami Florida Sunday night with Super Bowl 54. The Kansas City Chiefs will play the San Francisco 49ers for the first time in the history of the big game.  This will be the 11th time Miami has hosted the Super Bowl, the most for any city.

This is the first Super Bowl appearance for the Chiefs in 50 years. The last time Kansas City made it this far, it was 1970, when the Chiefs topped the Minnesota Vikings in Super Bowl IV for their first — and only — Lombardi Trophy. A win would end the second-longest Lombardi Trophy drought among teams that have already won a Super Bowl. Only the New York Jets (51 years) have endured a longer stretch in between titles.

The 49ers on the other hand are one of the most successful organizations in the history of the NFL. This will be there seventh Super Bowl appearance. San Francisco went to five Super Bowls between 1981-1994 and won all five of them, then returned to the big game in 2012, loosing the Baltimore Ravens. With a win the 49ers would tie the Patriots and Steelers for the most Super Bowls wins at 6.

There is always hype going into a Super Bowl, and 54 is proving no exception. The game presents clashing styles, and philosophies, both steams strength match the other weakness.

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Andy Reid Celebrating first AFC championship

 It’s a matchup that sees Veteran head coach Andy Reid, taking his second team to a Super Bowl (Eagles 2004) against the third youngest head coach in the NFL Kyle Shanahan. Mike Shanahan, Kyle’s father, won the super bowl in 1997 and 98 with the Denver Broncos. If the 49ers were to win, they would become the first father son duo to win separate Super Bowls. 

On the field, the 49ers greatest strength is its defense, which ranks first in the playoffs and second in the regular season, as well as first in total pass defense. Overseen by Defensive Coordinator Robert Saleh, they’ve allowed just 15 points per game in the postseason after surrendering just over 19 per game in the regular season. It starts up front, led by rookie pass rusher Nick Bosa, who has logged three sacks in the playoffs alone. Fellow D-linemen and pro bowlers Arik Armstead and DeForest Buckner combine to give the Niners one of the most fearsome front fours in the league.

And they will have to be going against last year’s MVP (and presumptive favourite to win Super Bowl MVP) Patrick Mahomes and the fearsome Kansas City offense. While their regular-season numbers weren’t always gaudy, the Chiefs eclipsed 35 points in both of their playoff games and have three different players among the best at their position: Mahomes, wide receiver Tyreek Hill and tight end Travis Kelce. In the AFC Championship game, Mahomes also showcased his legs, leading Kansas City in rushing. He is a true duel threat. While the Chiefs can run the ball here and there, but their chief mission (no pun intended) is to beat you through the air. To show how good this guy has been in his first 2 years, The Chiefs have never lost a game by more than seven points with Mahomes as their starter.

The 49ers on the other hand thrive keeping the ball on the ground. San Francisco led all playoff teams in rushing yards after ranking second among running teams in the regular season. The 49ers have used a rotation of running backs all year but in the NFC championship game it was all about Raheem Mostert. Mostert totaled 220 yards and four touchdowns that night dominating from start to finish. Where questions are being asked is third year starter Jimmy Garoppolo appearing in his third super bowl, but first as a starter. He only threw 8 passes against the Packers though, and questions have been asked about whether he can rise to the occasion.

The last unit we must look at is the Kansas City Chiefs defence. It is last for a reason, the less said the better about a unit that at best could be described as average.  However they have been much better in the post season holding Derick Henry to 69 yards in the AFC championship game. Defensive backs Bashaud Breeland and Tyrann Mathieu figure to play a key role on defense for the Chiefs. Both veterans have had a knack for being around the ball this year, particularly in the postseason.

What sets these two teams apart, is San Francisco’s defence. The Niners rank dead last in passing yards allowed and sixth in total sacks. If the front seven can establish dominance early against Kansas City’s questionable offensive line, this game – and their sixth Lombardi – is theirs for the taking. What the 49ers don’t have though is Patrick Mahomes, a generational special talent. It is impossible to predict or anticipate what he will do. This Super Bowl won’t provide the final answer but could shed some light on the one of sports greatest debates. What wins a championship Offence or Defence.

Nationals Defeat Astros In Game Seven To Win 2019 World Series

APTOPIX World Series Nationals Astros Baseball

The Washington Nationals celebrating on the field after clinching the World Series title.

By: Raegan Subban

Entering the 2019 MLB season the Washington Nationals were far from favorites to win the World Series. They lost arguably their best player, Bryce Harper, in the offseason to the Philadelphia Phillies. 

With a 19-31 record after the month of May, it wasn’t looking good for the Nats to even make the postseason.

However, after breaking into the 2019 Major League Baseball postseason as a wildcard team, the Nationals defied the odds and won it all. Washington defeated the Houston Astros in the 2019 World Series to win for the first time in franchise history.

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Athletes & Activism

The 3 Most Influential Athletes who took a stand for Social Justice.

Several African-American athletes who have advocated heavily for social justice

Whether it be the Black Lives Matter movement, protests against the Vietnam war, protests against racial discrimination and most recently, tensions between China and the NBA, sports athletes have been very effective at causing social change. 

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