Although there's a two-week delay between the conference championship round and the big game, the 2018 Super Bowl is nearly upon us. Whether you're a casual fan or a diehard, you may already be wondering what's going to happen. So, in that spirit, here are nine Super Bowl predictions you might be interested in.
On Sunday, Feb. 4, the Philadelphia Eagles and New England Patriots will take to the field at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minnesota, competing for the greatest prize in professional football, the Vince Lombardi trophy. It's a classic match-up of underdog versus, well, overdog ― the Eagles have never won a Super Bowl, with their last NFL championship coming in 1960, years before the start of the Super Bowl era. In other words, it's been quite a long time.
Their team is also being led by backup quarterback Nick Foles, following a season-ending leg injury to starting quarterback Carson Wentz last December. By contrast, the Patriots have won two of the previous four Super Bowls, and are led by Tom Brady, who's won five Super Bowls throughout his 15 seasons as the team's starting quarterback. In short, a whole lot of people would tell you this game won't be close, and that the Patriots are bound for victory. But not everybody is making the same predictions.
1. Trump Tweets During The Game
Trump is known to be chummy with Patriots owner Bob Kraft and coach Bill Belichick, as well as Brady himself. And in fact, this is actually something you can place a bet on, if you're the gambling type ― the over/under line for the number Trump tweets during the game is currently set at 3.5.
2. Beyonce Shows Up During The Halftime Show
It wouldn't be the first time, right? Beyonce memorably appeared as a surprise guest during the Coldplay-headlined Super Bowl halftime show back in 2016, a game won by the Denver Broncos. As it stands now, oddsmakers have put it at 6/1 odds that she makes a surprise appearance.
3. The Eagles Score A Dramatic Upset
As The Sporting News detailed on Thursday, the Eagles were considered underdogs in both of their playoff victories so far, including last week's crushing 38-7 victory over the Minnesota Vikings. But that didn't stop them, and there's no reason it has to next Sunday.
4. The Patriots Win In A Rout
An MVP candidate (and very likely the winner) at the age of 40, Brady is widely viewed as one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time, if not the greatest. And as he's shown countless times throughout his career, his teams are capable of putting up big numbers. For what it's worth, however, Tecmo Bowl disagrees with this prediction.
5. It Ends Up Being A Close Game
Despite all of New England's various bonafides, its track record in Super Bowls has been far narrower than you might assume. As CBS Sports noted this week, the Patriots have never won a Super Bowl by more than six points, meaning the games are typically loaded full of tension and dramatics.
6. Tom Brady Leads A Comeback
Brady has led seven fourth-quarter comebacks in playoff games, the most in league history. That includes last year's Super Bowl, when the Patriots surmounted a 28 to 3 deficit to defeat the Atlanta Falcons by a final score of 34 to 28. In short, as The Philadelphia Inquirer noted this week, Brady has a tendency to make comebacks seem routine, which could spell late-game heartbreak for the Eagles.
7. Nick Foles Becomes The First Backup To Win It All Since ... Tom Brady
Foles is aiming to join some pretty rare company. And, as The Washington Post noted this week, it could happen ― New England has not been good at limiting passing from opposing quarterbacks this season.
8. The Opening Coin Flip Lands On Tails
Of course, a coin flip is the very definition of a 50-50 chance, and yet, the majority of Super Bowl coin flips have turned up tails. Specifically, the coin flip has landed on tails 53 percent of the time ― likely not indicative of anything statistically significant, but a fun data point all the same.
9. Whoever Wins, The City Of Philadelphia Will Lose It
Prior to the Eagles' last game against the Minnesota Vikings, the Philadelphia police preemptively put cooking grease on light poles to keep people from climbing up them in a moment of triumph, or as the case may be, defeat.
Long story short, the reaction of many Eagles fans who spilled into the streets following the victory made it clear why local authorities are bracing for a chaotic scene, whether the team wins or loses. Of course, it still remains to be seen what'll end up happening Sunday night.