Before the start of every NFL season, we like to project the next five Super Bowl matchups and champions. We were way off on our prediction of the Buffalo Bills defeating the Green Bay Packers in last year’s Super Bowl – and we certainly don’t feel good about picking the Los Angeles Rams to represent the NFC in Super Bowl 58.
A new season means a fresh slate, meaning we’re going to give it another go in predicting the next five Super Bowl showdowns and winners. So let’s dive into it, starting with next February’s showdown in Las Vegas…
Super Bowl 58: Cincinnati Bengals vs. San Francisco 49ers
We were oh-so-close to getting this Super Bowl showdown in each of the last two years. The 49ers, of course, have lost each of the last two NFC Championship Games — while the Bengals fell just short of a second straight Super Bowl last season.
Given the star-studded talent and grade-A coaching on both sides, you know it’s only a matter of time until the January bounces finally go their respective ways. And the crystal ball tells us that they’ll finally get the overdue serendipity this upcoming season.
The Bengals have a top-three quarterback in the game in Joe Burrow…and the league’s best receiving trio in Ja’Marr Chase, Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd. Throw in the arrival of Pro Bowl offensive tackle Orlando Brown Jr. to fix up the leaky o-line, and you have an offense that might be even better than the 2021 and 2022 juggernauts.
Yes, the Kansas City Chiefs remain the class of the AFC. But need we remind you that Burrow is 3-1 against Patrick Mahomes…and it was almost 4-0. And as dangerous as the Buffalo Bills are, the last two years tell us that the Bengals are more built for crunch time than Josh Allen’s squad.
Also, KC didn’t have the best offseason, having lost two key receivers in JuJu Smith-Schuster and Mecole Hardman. Would you take KC’s corps of great unknowns…or the Bengals 3-headed monster? That’s what we thought.
And then in the NFC, you have a loaded 49ers team that could have won the Super Bowl last year if Brock Purdy didn’t tear his UCL in the conference title game.
Purdy might have football’s deepest set of weapons: The league’s best all-around running back in Christian McCaffrey, a top-three tight end in George Kittle and two 1,000-yard wideouts in Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk. Playing with Trent Williams, the game’s best offensive lineman, doesn’t hurt either.
Oh, and the 49ers only had the NFL’s best total defense and scoring defense last year. And they added one of the game’s premier defensive tackles in Javon Hargrave, who played a vital role in the Philadelphia Eagles’ NFC Championship-winning campaign last year.
It’s neck-and-neck between the 49ers and Eagles for the best team in the NFC. But the 49ers have the slight edge on defense, and the Eagles still haven’t experienced what San Fran’s offense is capable of at full strength.
Oh and an extra fun note: These two teams play at Levi’s Stadium in Week 8 in a late afternoon tilt. Tune in for what could be a dazzling Super Bowl 58 preview!
So, last year’s Conference Championship losers get some nice comeuppance and punch their tickets to Super Bowl 58 in Las Vegas. Who’s taking it home?
Winner: Cincinnati Bengals
The 49ers shattered the Bengals’ hearts in those two unforgettable Super Bowl showdowns back in the ‘80s. Fast forward to the year 2024, and it’s time for the Bengals to finally complete the mission and end decades of pain.
With an elite QB against an elite defense, you just know this game is going down to the wire. But as recent history has shown, the team with the better QB in the big game almost-always emerges victorious.
Like their Super Bowl 56 loss against the Los Angeles Rams, the Bengals will find themselves in a tight defensive battle that comes down to the very wire. This time, Burrow does to the 49ers what he couldn’t do to LA: Break their hearts with a game-winning TD drive in the final minute.
Final Score: Bengals 24, 49ers 23
Super Bowl 59: Kansas City Chiefs vs. Philadelphia Eagles
You know how in Hollywood, when a movie does so well…they do multiple sequels? Star Wars, Back to the Future, Terminator, et al? Yeah, well we know the NFL isn’t scripted so it’s easier said than done, but we’d be over-the-moon for a rematch of Super Bowl 57.
We’re still bitter that the Chiefs-Eagles game essentially ended on a tacky defensive holding call on James Bradberry. The refs are usually good at letting them play in the Super Bowl, but oh they just HAD TO decide the game in what was shaping up to be a top-five all-time Super Bowl showdown.
Anywho, the Crystal Ball told us that the dream Super Bowl rematch will happen at the Caesars Superdome in New Orleans on Feb. 9, 2025. So circle your calendars.
Since Patrick Mahomes took over as the starting QB in KC in 2018, the Chiefs have played in five conference title games and three Super Bowls. Basic math says his Chiefs will be back there very shortly — be it in 2024 or 2025.
Mahomes and Andy Reid are this era’s Tom Brady and Bill Belichick — where they won’t go more than two seasons without playing in a Super Bowl. Mahomes is the best QB in the game, and Reid has dethroned Belichick for the title of the league’s best head coach.
Do we really need to say more?
The Eagles have a top-five QB in Jalen Hurts, the league’s second-best receiving duo in DeVonta Smith and AJ Brown, the league’s best offensive line and the league’s best front seven. So…we’re not really sure how much more hyping they need, either.
Hurts’ performance in Super Bowl 57 proved that he can handle the pressure with no issue. Not his fault that Philly’s stout defense forgot to show up in that game.
Soon enough, you’ll see the Hurts-led Eagles back in the Super Bowl. So, who’s getting their hands on the trophy?
Winner: Philadelphia Eagles
If we’re being honest, the Chiefs played a near-perfect game on offense and still barely beat the Eagles in Super Bowl 57. And if you compare the star power and roster depth, Philly is considerably better.
Mahomes is the great equalizer for Kansas City. But something tells us his o-line won’t yield zero sacks again against that Philly front seven. Especially if Jalen Carter and Jordan Davis are established stars by then.
Mahomes will keep it close because it’s Mahomes, but the Eagles’ defense steps up with a couple of big stops — while Hurts, Smith and Brown go off to deliver the franchise its second Super Bowl.
Final Score: Eagles 27, Chiefs 23
Super Bowl 60: Buffalo Bills vs. Philadelphia Eagles
Many expected this to be the Super Bowl 57 matchup before the postseason commenced, but the Bills were ousted by Joe Burrow’s Bengals at home in the Divisional Round.
You gotta think if the Bills haven’t reached a Super Bowl within the next two seasons, drastic changes will have been made:..at least in the front office or coaching staff. But Josh Allen, a top-3 QB in the game, will still be here.
Buffalo has a top-five defense in the game, though it’s anybody’s guess if ageing vets like Von Miller, Jordan Poyer, Matt Milano and Micah Hyde will still be here. But they’ll still have core pieces in place here like Tre’Davious White, Kaiir Elam, Ed Oliver and Gregory Rousseau.
We’re also going to go ahead and assume that with the Bills being an annual contender, they’ll have added several big-named veterans to their rosters on discount prices. See the Kansas City Chiefs, where players often take less for the chance to win a ring.
And if you ask us, Josh Allen is this era’s Peyton Manning. At some point, a quarterback that’s just so freaking good and heads-and-shoulders above most of the others is simply due for some postseason luck. The Bills can’t be snake-bitten in the postseason forever…right?! Right?!
And then we just sang the Eagles’ praises on the previous entry…so there’s nothing new to see here. If our calculations are correct, they’ll be the first team to repeat as NFC Champions since the 2013 and 2014 Seattle Seahawks.
BUT…will they be the first team to win back-to-back Super Bowls since the 2003 and ‘04 New England Patriots?
Winner: Buffalo Bills
Bills haters: Get those Buffalo Super Bowl-less jokes out of the way while you can. Because sooner or later, Josh Allen is going to lead this long-suffering franchise and its fanbase to Lombardi Trophy No. 1.
Allen has been a man on a mission, holding up his end of the bargain for the Bills since taking over as the full-time starter in 2019. Allen, like the Indianapolis Colts’ version of Peyton Manning, will eventually break through all the years of heartbreak and lead his franchise to a Super Bowl.
Over a half-century of misery in Buffalo is finally over. Plan the parade, Bills Mafia.
Final Score: Bills 30, Eagles 27
Super Bowl 61: Jacksonville Jaguars vs. San Francisco 49ers
To be perfectly frank, we’d be shocked if this 49ers core didn’t reach multiple Super Bowls over the next half-decade. They’re that loaded from top to bottom — and just about every core player not named Trent Williams and Christian McCaffrey will still be here and/or in their prime.
Truth be told, there are just too many bonafide title contenders in the AFC, all of whom have a young phenom and established franchise QB. And you just have to think that all of Mahomes, Allen, Burrow and T-Law will get at least one bit of the apple.
In what was supposed to be a rebuilding year, the Jaguars won the AFC South last season and reached the elite eight. They’re loaded with playmakers everywhere here: Lawrence, Travis Etienne Jr., Calvin Ridley, Christian Kirk, Tyson Campbell, Josh Allen and Travon Walker, among others.
We’re simply too confident and invested in this Jaguars’ team. Their historic comeback against the Los Angeles Chargers in last season’s AFC Wild Card Round shows just how built this club is for big moments.
So it’ll be the annual powerhouse 49ers against the cats from the Sunshine State. Who’s coming out victorious?
Winner: San Francisco 49ers
If our projections are correct, the 49ers will have endured a second gut-wrenching Super Bowl defeat in the Kyle Shanahan era. Well, third time’s a charm here.
Not many defenses are equipped to neutralize the Jaguars’ high-powered offense, but San Fran is one of them. The likes of Fred Warner and Nick Bosa will still be in their primes here, and the 49ers still figure to be an offensive machine with Purdy, Aiyuk and Samuel et al.
By our calculations, the 49ers’ defense will be just a tad bit better for this showdown — and that will make the difference in what could go down as one of the best Super Bowl games of the 21st century.
Final Score: 49ers 23, Jaguars 21
Super Bowl 62: Carolina Panthers vs. Kansas City Chiefs
The Panthers have lost their only two Super Bowl appearances in franchise history. With Bryce Young finally giving this team an answer at quarterback, the future suddenly looks bright again in Charlotte.
We love the Young-Frank Reich pairing. If Reich can win a Super Bowl with Nick Foles, there’s no telling what he can do with one of the best QB prospects of this generation.
Now, the Panthers are still at least a couple of years away from realistically contending. They still need help all over on defense and have zero established Pro Bowl-level offensive lineman and weapons.
But over time, we trust that they’ll have built up a juggernaut around Young. They’ll add more playmakers and use David Tepper’s deep pockets to recruit a ton of other stars over free agency.
The last thing standing in Carolina’s way for its first Super Bowl title? Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs, who are shooting for dynasty status:
Winner: Kansas City Chiefs
You know how the Brady and Belichick-led Patriots kept destroying other potential dynasties or a franchise’s dream of winning their first championship? Yeah, the Chiefs are going to do similar stuff with Mahomes and Reid.
It’s just hard to go against a team who will have an in-his-prime Mahomes against a Carolina team that won’t have been on the grand stage yet. Mahomes and Reid know what it takes to win more than any other active QB-coach duo.
And this is the year the Chiefs cement dynasty status by claiming their third Super Bowl trophy in less than a decade.
Final Score: Chiefs 34, Panthers 23
Who do you think will face off in the next five Super Bowls, and who will win each matchup?
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