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3 players who could make or break the Chiefs’ Super Bowl chances

Kansas City will need the best from these three.

NFL: AFC Divisional Round-Jacksonville Jaguars at Kansas City Chiefs Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

Super Bowl LVII is close enough to where you can start setting up your furniture to make room for everyone that is coming over, but not so close that you lay out your outfit. Don’t be that person, please.

When The Big Game™️ ultimately happens this Sunday we are all going to be rooting for a great back-and-forth contest. It stands to reason that we will get this seeing as how the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs have been the two best teams in the NFL all season, but sometimes football taketh away.

On Friday morning Brandon Gowton, Stephen Serda, and I previewed the game on the latest edition of The SB Nation NFL Show and we agreed that the game should indeed be quite the spectacle. We could not reach a consensus on who we think is going to win on Sunday, but if my opinion means anything to you I think it will be the Chiefs of Kansas City (aka the artists formerly known as the Dallas Texans which means this sort of counts for Dallas...says the longtime Dallas Cowboys fan).

If Kansas City is indeed able to come out on top, it will obviously be because Patrick Mahomes did Patrick Mahomes things, but he has friends that he can rely on as well.

Here are three Chiefs who could make or break Kansas City’s chances to win Super Bowl LVII.

TE Travis Kelce

I’m avoiding listing Patrick Mahomes here because it is incredibly obvious that he is going to be a player to watch, but we can’t also exclude tight end Travis Kelce.

There is an argument to be made that Kelce is the best pass-catching option in the NFL, especially with Mahomes as the quarterback throwing him the ball. You can rest assured that the primary focus of what Philadelphia is going to do defensively is going to be based around the idea of mitigating the impact that Kelce can have.

None of this is to say or imply that the Chiefs don’t have other playmakers on the offensive side of the ball because they obviously do, but Philly has to force those options into play by devoting the bulk of their attention to Travis. The Chiefs success isn’t totally dependent on Kelce, but when he is on things are generally working out very well for them.

DT Chris Jones

Did you know that Chris Jones did not have a single playoff sack until the AFC Championship Game two weeks ago? I couldn’t believe that.

We all know that Jalen Hurts is incredibly mobile and with this being the Super Bowl, the Eagles are likely not going to leave anything in the tank in that sense. What Jalen is going to be able to do from a mobility standpoint is going to largely be influenced by how much of a problem Chris Jones can be along the defensive line.

This is an obvious challenge because the Eagles have the best offensive line in the NFL. If Chris Jones can cause havoc, even without filling up the stat sheet, then that can go a long way towards stifling what Philly wants to do offensively.

RB Jerick McKinnon

While Travis Kelce gets all of the attention, there is an emergency option of sorts for the Chiefs that they called upon many times over the last few weeks of the regular season, and that is running back Jerick McKinnon.

Thanks to the stout Eagles pass rush, Patrick Mahomes is going to have to get rid of the ball quickly throughout this game. While Andy Reid and Co. will be working on creating opportunities for him to attack the entire field, there are likely going to at least be a handful of times where Mahomes has to dump it down underneath. This is an area that Jerick McKinnon thrived in as the regular season wound down and one that could be a difference-maker.

There are usually players who show up and have tremendous Super Bowl performances that nobody saw coming. McKinnon is a classic answer to that sort of call.