Until last season, the Kansas City Chiefs hadn’t won a Super Bowl since 1970. Their head coach, Andy Reid, who had not won a Super Bowl since first becoming a head coach with the Philadelphia Eagles in 1999––Reid’s Eagles lost to the New England Patriots 24-21 in 2005––finally reached the mountaintop in the Chiefs 31-20 win over the San Francisco 49ers. Now, the Chiefs, led by Reid since 2013, with Patrick Mahomes at quarterback, are preparing to compete in their second consecutive Super Bowl on Sunday in Tampa, Florida.
“Once you’ve been there and experience it, you want to go back,” said Reid last season after the Chiefs big win. His desire has been met. The Chiefs were 14-2 this past regular season, the AFCs No.1 seed, and won a divisional playoff game over the Cleveland Browns 22-17 three weeks ago and then took care of the Buffalo Bills, 38-24, two weeks ago in the AFC Championship Game.
Now the Chiefs will face the 11-5 Tampa Bay Buccaneers, quarterbacked by six-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady, who will be making his tenth appearance overall in the game, nine with the New England Patriots. Coincidentally, the game is being played at Raymond James Stadium, the Buccaneers’ home.
Mahomes and Brady have played against each other once in their careers during the regular season, a 27-24 Chiefs win in Week 12 this past November. Mahomes threw for 462 yards that day, completing 37-of-49 passes with three touchdowns and no interceptions. Brady was also proficient, going 27-41 for 345 yards, with three touchdowns and two interceptions.
It was the fourth time that Mahomes and Brady went head-to-head. The other three took place when Brady was with the Patriots. Their record stands at 2-2. Super Bowl LV (55) will be the rubber match.
Mahomes, 25, grew up watching Brady play “and he’s still here playing, and he’s still at the top of the game,” said the 25 year old. “I need to watch him and watch the things that he does on and off the field, in order to figure out the best way to make me the best player possible.”
If Kansas City wins on Sunday, they will be the first team to win back-to-back Super Bowls since Brady’s Patriots won in 2004 as well as 2005, the year Reid came close. His 15-year journey to get back ended in pure joy for the man many call Big Red. Now he’ll try to even his record against Brady in Super Bowls.