The Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs square off in Super Bowl LV for the NFL title Sunday; the match will showcase a young talented leader against the most decorated veteran in league history.
After winning their first Super Bowl victory in 50 years, defending champions Chiefs and star quarterback Patrick Mahomes will try to grab the first back-to-back NFL title since the New England Patriots did in 2004 and 2005.
The Patriots, led by quarterback Tom Brady for 20 seasons, managed to win six titles during two decades. This Super Bowl will be Brady’s fifth appearance in the big game in the last seven years.
Besides winning the Super Bowl Most Valuable Player (MVP) a record four times, Brady also has three NFL MVPs and two NFL Offensive Player of the Year awards under his belt, in addition to leading the NFL in passing touchdowns for four seasons and passing yards in three of them.
Brady, 43, left the Patriots and joined the Buccaneers last March and carried Tampa Bay this season for a shot at the Lombardi Trophy.
Sunday will mark the tenth Super Bowl in Brady’s career, a record for any player in the NFL when he leads the Buccaneers on their home field at the Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, where the game will kick off at 6.30 p.m. EDT (1130GMT).
Despite a capacity of 65,618, the stadium will be at one-third due to coronavirus restrictions with 14,500 fans and 7,500 vaccinated health care workers who the NFL invites.
Sarah Thomas, 47, will be the first woman to officiate a Super Bowl after becoming the first full-time female official in NFL history in 2015.
Tampa Bay will become the first team to play and host the Super Bowl, as they will try to grab the Lombardi Trophy for the second time since January 2003.
Unlike Brady, a pocket passer with high accuracy, Mahomes, 25, is known for his natural athletic skills and scrambling ability that can confuse defenses with a running game and play-action passes.
The Texas-native is regarded as the game’s future and may become a Hall of Famer after earning MVP and Offensive Player of the Year honors in 2018 while leading the league in passing touchdowns.
While he is the second-youngest quarterback after Ben Roethlisberger to win a Super Bowl, he also became the youngest Super Bowl MVP last year.
Mahomes led Kansas City to a 14-2 record during this year’s regular season, finishing atop the American Football Conference.
In a close game on Nov. 30, the Chiefs managed to beat the Buccaneers 27-24, with Mahomes throwing for 462 yards and three touchdowns. Star receiver Tyreek Hill had 269 yards in that game.
Brady’s 345 yards and three touchdowns, combined with tight end Rob Gronkowski’s 106 yards, were not enough for Tampa Bay.
The Buccaneers went 11-5 to finish fourth in the National Football Conference and earned a wild-card spot in the playoffs.
Since losing to Kansas City in November, they managed to win seven consecutive games, the longest in franchise history, including three games in playoffs.
On the other hand, the Chiefs led the regular season with 6,653 total yards, while the Buccaneers ranked seventh with 6,145.
Mahomes ranked second with 4,740 passing yards during the regular season, while Brady was third with 4,633 yards.
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