Dan Wiederer, Chicago Tribune, covers the Chicago Bears.
He joins us now to talk a little bit about the Super Bowl. From somebody who covered the Bears, we're going to get to the Bears in a second here. How do you look at these two teams? We had the Eagles, who were just an incredible blend of run and pass, and the Chiefs that are slinging all over the place with Sweet Georgia Brown playing in the background when Patrick Mahomes is doing things. How do you look at this game?
I did some killing work on 670 to score in Chicago this morning and there are two ways to look at this game. The first way is to see the Philadelphia Eagles as the team that is more complete, that has been more impressive from week one until now. The team that is built from the trenches out in a way that gives them an ability to win every single game they play. And then the other way to look at it is that the best player in the game Sunday is Patrick Mahomes. And this is why I flipped my prediction from two weeks ago saying the Eagles are going to win the Super Bowl.
They're saying the best player in the biggest game usually finds a way to dig deep and make the play that changes it. And so Patrick Mahomes' magic playmaking artistry for me is sort of the pivot point in this game, but I have no problems with anyone who looks at this game and says the Philadelphia Eagles are more solid top to bottom. Have you ever seen two conference championship games at a Super Bowl where the point spread was under a field goal in all three games?
Incredibly close. We had one of the, I think the Bengals and the Chiefs was Pickham, even in Kansas City, and the other game was like a point and a half in Philadelphia. It really, all three games were super competitive, at least we thought would be.
Didn't turn out that way in the first two cases. Could you make the argument that the Chiefs have the best three players in this game in Mahomes, in Travis Kelce, and in Chris Jones? I talked this morning about how nationally underrated Chris Jones' impact on football is. The dude is a monster and he's doing so many different things to really just set a tone for the Chiefs defense that you can't overlook that end of thing. Look like the playmaking prowess is there in the Kansas City Chiefs. They also have Andy Reed, who with extra time to prepare, has a sparkling track record of being able to find answers and provide an answer key to his team for how to attack an opponent.
They've also been to multiple Super Bowls more recently than the Eagles were at their last one in which I think they have eight or nine guys still left on the roster. And so I think the experience of just surfing that wave, which is Superbowl week, you've experienced it. You know what it is. It can be an energy drain. It can be noisy. There can be fatigue.
And when you have experience dealing with it and figuring out how to, how to surf that wave, it's an advantage. And so that's, that's on the pro side of the Kansas City Chiefs on the scouting report for this one on Sunday. Dan Wieder, Chicago Tribune covers the Chicago Bears. I promise I will ask a Bears question about the quarterback coming up before we let Dan go. So what flips this game? What area are you looking at that this basically determines who wins and who loses aside from Mahomes is the best player?
So that's the only one that matters to me. And that's why I changed upon having to make my final prediction because look, I told a story this morning when I was doing work on the 2017 quarterback class coming into the NFL. I was down at Clemson's pro day and I was visiting with Jordan Palmer and he was talking about the Sean Watson, who, as you know, was coming off a national championship, the feet of Alabama. And he said, you know why Clemson beat Alabama? Because of course they did because of course, with the game on the line in the final moment, Sean Watson took them all down the field and did what he does and scored a touchdown. And what happened in the NFL that same season, five weeks later, Tom Brady's in a 25 point hole against the Atlanta Falcons and ends the night holding up the Lombardi trophy because of course, Tom Brady was holding up the Lombardi trophy.
And so that for me is like, that's where I kept getting stuck. And it's like, yeah, like I'm not going to go against Mahomes on this stage. And I've said for two weeks that because Patrick is so gregarious because he has that sort of cartoonish voice.
We don't appreciate the cold blooded killer inside of him. Right. And the, the, the, the reality that when we watch Sunday night football and the chiefs are behind at two minutes to go and the chiefs get the ball, you go, of course they're winning this game. So that to me is the biggest part of this game. Now that said, look, it's going to be all about mistakes. And this Eagles defense has been so damn relentless all year long at creating pressure that if they can get a couple of mistakes and then Jalen hurts can be the guy that he's been most of the year, which is taking care of the football, understanding that six yard games are positive plays, understanding that smart decision-making ultimately elevates offenses, which then ultimately elevates the legacy of quarterbacks. Maybe they can be the team that makes fewer mistakes.
And then in the end has a chance to, to see a victory, which would be the punctuation on what has been a truly impressive season. You know, it's interesting, everybody, people are talking about the Eagles pass rush, the 70 sacks, four different players with more than 10 on the season. And they have the best pass rush, pass rush in the entire league. But the Chiefs are second in that category with 55 sacks and the Eagles have allowed 44 this year. And the Chiefs only 26. Part of that is the style. Part of that is the scheme. Part of that is the quarterback knowing how to get rid of the ball. I think Patrick Mahomes will be fine.
Do you think the spread would be this tight if Mahomes was 100% physically? I never thought I'd care about gardening until I bought a house in the suburbs. But now I find myself in conversations about liquid fertilizer and I wonder, am I the fertilizer guy now? No, no way.
Everyone knows the ratio between phosphorus and nitrogen, right? Yeah, I'm still totally cool. Anyway, when you save with Progressive by bundling your home at auto, that's the easy part of adjusting to the suburbs. Progressive cash flow insurance coverage provided in service by affiliates and third party insurers. I don't know. I don't know. It's an interesting question. I just know that being in Chicago, I always say that growing up, there were two experiences of fandom. As a Chicago Cubs fan, they're biting your fingernail at all times going, what's going to go wrong? And then you were a Bulls fan. And you said, no matter how much stress you felt, no matter how much anxiety pressure built up, you just went, Michael's gay.
And that's the feeling that she's fans. I don't know. Right? Like I'm sure they said that in New England for two decades, like Tommy's got this, he's going to rescue us. And so you look at it through that lens and you go, if Patrick Mahomes plays a good game on Sunday, he's going to have two MVP awards and two Super Bowl rings after five seasons starting in the league.
This is next level legendary stuff. And so who knows what the odds makers do with all that stuff? I just know that my gut is telling me, don't be foolish enough to bet against one of the greatest of all time. 30 seconds before we have to let Dan waiter ago, are the bears trading Justin Fields and drafting a quarter? No, they are keeping Justin Fields and not drafting a quarterback.
No. And I think, listen, Adam, I think the belief in Chicago is that you have to do your due diligence. You have to listen to every phone call that comes your way.
You have to figure out what you believe about this. But ultimately with all the things they asked Justin Fields to do in 2022 to check 97% of the boxes. And so it's your obligation now as an organization that's never had a franchise quarterback, that could be a fuel source for championship runs to see this through and to give Justin Fields 2023 and figure out what he is as a, a NFL passer and then adjust from there.
But it'd be premature right now to cut that cord just in the temptation to try to start over with a Bryce young, a will levels or CJ strategy at Dan Wiederer on Twitter. One of my all time favorites, man. Thank you very much for the time. I will talk to you soon.
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Whisper: medium.en / 2023-02-10 21:15:30 / 2023-02-10 21:19:30 / 4