Bleed the Bookie: Super Bowl Madness!
Mike McKittrick (@McKittrickM)
As promised, this is truly a special week. With so many different things to look at, I felt as if everybody would be cheated out of something fun and, hopefully, profitable should I have only done one blog. That's the main reason why I decided it was best to do one blog specifically for non-player props and one blog for player props and predictions. For the final time this season, let's Bleed the Bookie!
Kansas City vs San Francisco is a matchup that, at the beginning of the season, not many people would have predicted. However, the Niners proved that they are not a team that rolls over and dies throughout the season, going 13-3 in the regular season to lock up the #1 seed throughout the playoffs. In the playoffs, they rolled over both NFC North opponents in the Minnesota Vikings and the Green Bay Packers to make it to the big dance. The Chiefs, on the other hand, were expected to be in the big game from the start of the season. A powerhouse offense that added experience to their defensive core, Kansas City went 12-4 in the regular season to clinch a first-round bye. They then proceeded to put up a staggering 51 points against the Houston Texans after trailing 24-0, then defeated the Tennessee Titans to clinch the AFC Championship.
This is a game that had me torn all week long. As much as I love Kansas City and my head tells me this is Andy Reid's time to win a ring, I feel like San Francisco is overlooked here. They have the best run defenses in the league and Damien Williams isn't exactly a go-to back. Richard Sherman vs Tyreek Hill will be interesting, but Mahomes has been tending to not target Hill as much. Hill has only had one game of over 10 receptions and 100 yards since week 10, and only eight catches on eleven targets for 108 yards in two playoff games. He does, however, have two touchdowns, both coming in the AFC championship, so that is something the Chiefs can look to. Kelce has been the go-to guy all season. Another 1,000-yard season and he has not slowed down in the playoffs either. He is the #1 red zone target for Mahomes and has been one of the most consistent Tight Ends over the last four years.
As good as the Kansas City offense is, The San Francisco offense if just as electric. They may not have the big-name receiver that Kansas City has, but they are a team that everybody pitches in when called upon. Raheem Mostert, the undrafted savior for the Niners, has been nothing short of phenomenal for this team. He averaged over five yards per carry in the regular season, and hasn't slowed down in the postseason with over 250 yards on the ground and four touchdowns in two games. The biggest benefactor of the run game, however, is George Kittle. Shannahan is one of the best coaches in the league at utilizing the play-action pass, and Kittle has shined in this aspect. He leads all tight ends in receiving yards this season, and I feel that the best has yet to come in his young career. Look for him to have a day on Sunday and give San Francisco a great Chance to win this game.
Kansas City is currently -1.5 (-115) and -128 ML while the 49ers are +1.5 (-105) and +112 on the ML. Personally, I always take the ML in tight games like this, I never really see the value in taking the spread on the off chance it is a one-point game and you lose value. Part of me wants to say the Niners. They've been the best team in football in the playoffs, controlling every game from kickoff. In addition to that, it was found while doing research that it was predicted by the Simpsons that the 49ers would win the Super Bowl in Miami. Anybody who knows the Simpsons knows the conspiracy theories based around how eerily accurate their show is when it comes to aspects that nobody would think would happen, including the details. However, I have said from the start of the postseason I like the AFC to win the Super Bowl this year, and I am going to double down here. I already placed my future bet during Conference Championship weekend on the Chiefs to win the big game to hedge out my Titans bet, and I think the ability of Patrick Mahomes to extend plays and move the chains will be the difference here. I'll take the Chiefs ML here.
I previously mentioned how good Kittle and Kelce have been in the playoffs and this season, and I think they have good games today. Starting with Kelce, he has two props I am interested in, but the one I personally bet is o6.5 catches at +112. He has been the consistent target for Mahomes and with Sherman patrolling the secondary, I like Kelce over 6.5 catches, especially for plus-money. Secondly, George Kittle also has been very valuable in the passing game, and Kansas City has allowed the fourth-most receptions in the league against tight ends. The bet I like here is over 74.5 receiving yards. I feel as if 8 catches for 80 yards is absolutely in the realm of possibility here. If San Francisco can establish the run, look for them to bait the Chiefs with stacking the box then hitting Kittle over the middle for a big gain. I will like the over here at -112.
Finally, the MVP ballot. I feel as if there are only a couple of real options here. Nick Bosa can have a big game, a sack and a half and 5 total tackles, maybe a forced fumble. Jimmy Garroppolo has shown in the past he can let the ball fly in order to get the Niners a big win. But my issue here is that I do not think San Francisco wins this game. That leaves one option: Patrick Mahomes. He's been lights out since the playoffs have started, and is one win away from his first ring. If they get the win on Sunday, he will be the reason. Patrick Mahomes, at +100, will be your playoff MVP.
My Pick Recap:
Chiefs ML (-128) for one unit
Kelce over 6.5 receptions (+112) for one unit
Kittle over 74.5 Receiving yards (-112) for one unit
Mahomes Super Bowl MVP (+100) for one unit