Predicting Super Bowl LII

Design+by+Alejandra+Gonzalez

Design by Alejandra Gonzalez

The Prospector Staff

With the NFL’s biggest game left remaining, The Prospector staff weighs in on who they think will win the 52nd Super Bowl.

Super Bowl LII (Philadelphia Eagles vs. New England Patriots, Minneapolis, MN, 4:30 PM MST, NBC)

Jeremy Carranco

Philadelphia Eagles 31 | New England Patriots 17

It’s hard to pick against Tom Brady and Bill Belichick, who are now eyeing their sixth Lombardi trophy. New England has also been the most consistent and successful NFL franchise in nearly the past two decades and it’s all in part to the success of future Hall of Famer Tom Brady. However, the Eagles defense has been impressive in the postseason, holding Matt Ryan’s Falcons to just 10 points and the Minnesota Vikings to seven in the NFC title game. Backup quarterback Nick Foles has been a surprise for a Philadelphia team that was concerned heading into the playoffs following the season ending injury (ACL) of Carson Wentz in Week 14. Foles has completed 49 of his 63 postseason passes for a combined yardage mark of 598, proving the Eagles have been getting it done on both sides of the ball as of late. Looking back at the Patriots, I haven’t been all that impressed with their offense during this run and their defense has some question marks heading into Sunday. It seems like The Eagles key will mostly fall on the defensive line, with Fletcher Cox, Timmy Jernigan, Brandon Graham, Vinny Curry, Chris Long and Derek Barnett forming a rotation that cannot be matched in football right now.

Eddie Velazquez

Philadelphia Eagles 20 | New England Patriots 17

On Feb. 3, 2002, the St. Louis Rams were coming off of one of their best statistical seasons. To put this into perspective, the high-powered offense was deemed “the greatest show on turf” due to its explosiveness and torrential scoring on opposing defenses. Enter stage the New England Patriots, who enjoyed a modest, over-achieving season commanded by backup quarterback, Tom Brady. Thanks to their stingy defense and the genius game planning of master tactician Bill Belichick, they were able to slay the Rams’ dynasty-in-the-making, effectively ensuring St. Louis never made it to the Super Bowl again.
Fast forward 16 years later, a Philadelphia Eagles team led by an afterthought of a backup quarterback, a stingy defense and a brilliant offensive coach are coming into the Metrodome with just one objective in mind; delivering a mistake-free performance in what seems an all-too-familiar changing of the guard scenario for New England.

The key to this matchup will lie in defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz’s ability to play man-to-man coverage and still deliver pressure to Brady. The New York Giants were able to beat the Patriots twice in the Super Bowl by applying pressure to the G.O.A.T in 43 percent of his offensive snaps, according to Pro Football Focus (PFF). Schwartz has just the personnel to do so thanks to his heavy rotation of pass rushers, who have averaged pressure on 44 percent of the opposing offenses’ snaps, per PFF.

Daniel Mendez

Philadelphia Eagles 27 | New England Patriots 24

“I used to pray for times like this, to rhyme like this, so I had to grind like that to shine like this” when Meek Mill’s Dreams and Nightmares gets played on Sunday and as the Eagles get introduced to the hardest rap intro of all time, the song fuels the team up, the fan base and everybody in the city of Philadelphia. Can you imagine what happens on the biggest stage ever? Make it simple Philly about to bing home its first Vince Lombardi trophy and not only do it for themselves and the city but for Meek Mill. “ Gangsters move in silence,” is the best description for this Eagles defense. The defensive line has been unmatched in the battle of the trenches. Fletcher Cox, Timmy Jernigan, Brandon Graham, and Chris Long will look to make Brady’s white jersey dirty. The best way to beat New England is to hit Tom Brady apply pressure make him feel uncomfortable in the pocket. Long who was a Patriot last season will look to put an end to the GOAT. New England behind Bill Belichick and Tom Brady have won their previous Super Bowl in the final minutes of regulation, that Eagles defense prevents that this year. Looking at Malcolm Jenkins to take home Super Bowl MVP. In addition to making the GOAT feel uncomfortable in the pocket you need to have a run game. Philly has that, ex-Patriot Legarrette Blount puts the cheese in the Philly Cheesesteak meanwhile Jay Ajayi is the speed back while Blount is the bruiser. Nick Foles becomes Eli Manning Jr. beats Brady but expect tommy Uggs to go down fighting though. New England hasn’t looked like its dominant self on offense in these playoffs.The underdogs need to attack Brady and don’t take the foot off the gas pedal, do it for Terrell Owens and Donovan McNabb do it for the city of Brotherly love, do it for Meek Milly. Climb those light poles get belligerent and free Meek Mill.

Michaela Román

Philadelphia Eagles 17 | New England Patriots 35

The Patriots are obviously going to win because unfortunately it’s Trump’s America now and that’s just how it goes.

No but really, Brady and Belichick are essentially unstoppable. No one wants to see them win again, myself included, but having Brady as my fantasy quarterback this season was a blessing. Besides their bye week, I never had to worry about swapping him out because I could and will continue to count on him to deliver come Sunday.

Elenie Gonzalez

New England Patriots 31 | Philadelphia Eagles 27

This one is tough for me. As a die hard Cowboys fan, there is absolutely no way I can have the Eagles winning, even if they are that good. As a certified, Patriots hater, I’m tired of seeing them winning the Super Bowl year after year after year. However, as much as I HATE Tom Brady and Belicheat, I mean Belichick, I will never deny that Brady is the GOAT. No one else has been able to do what he has.

Despite minor setbacks and crucial injuries throughout, the Patriots always pull through. The physical health of key players like Gronk, who wasn’t able to play in last year’s Super Bowl matter. Same with Edelman who suffered a season-ending knee injury in the preseason. Overall, it’s a mental thing. We know Gronk is ready to play, and it’s expected that Edelman will suit up. Both teams injury reports are clean and every man is 100% healthy, so it will come down to what they can do on the field.

Brandin Cooks has been a bit of a secret (not-so-secret) weapon for the Pats this year, and will help put up numbers since the Eagles defense will probably focus on stopping Gronk. There’s also Danny Amendola who has shined this postseason with some pretty amazing catches, especially the one that helped secure the Pats spot in Super Bowl LII.

I can keep going but I’ll stop here. Bottom line is that the Pats are the Pats and as much as I wish none of these teams win, in the end there’s no way I could choose Foles over Brady.