Jan 30, 2015; Phoenix, AZ, USA; General view of the Vince Lombardi Trophy and helmets for the Seattle Seahawks and New England Patriots during a press conference for Super Bowl XLIX at the Phoenix Convention Center. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports
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Super Bowl XLIX kicks off on Sunday as the finale to the 2014-15 season and the Seattle Seahawks have a chance to repeat as champions for the first time since their opponent, the New England Patriots, did it a decade ago.
Sunday’s game features Seattle’s top-notch defense against the Patriots explosive offensive in a game that may have similarities from last season’s big game.
However, this year will likely not be the same blowout it was in Super Bowl XLVIII.
Here are some predictions for this year’s Super Bowl:
1. Russell Wilson throws for 225 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
The Patriots have a slightly better run defense than secondary and they have shown that throughout the season.
Because of that, Marshawn Lynch probably won’t break 100 yards on the ground, which means Russell Wilson is going to have to have a much better performance than his four-interception game against the Green Bay Packers two weeks ago.
Wilson stepped up in last year’s Super Bowl, going 18-for-25 for 206 yards and two touchdowns, and I expect him to have very similar numbers against the Patriots.
The NFC title game was a nuance — Wilson almost always plays his best games when they matter most.
The better he plays, the better the offense does and the better chance Seattle has to win on Sunday.
2. Jermaine Kearse leads Seattle receivers with six catches, 80 yards.
Kearse had four catches for 65 yards in last year’s Super Bowl (Baldwin had five for 66), and he will step up on Sunday to help his quarterback out once again.
The Seahawks like to spread the ball around on offense and there could very well be five or six receivers with at least two catches, but Kearse will lead them all.
3. Seahawks defense forces three turnovers.
Seattle has been able to ride their red-hot defense right into the Super Bowl for the second-straight year.
They forced two turnovers in the NFC Championship Game and three turnovers in the NFC Divisional Game.
If Brady feels rushed, he may make a few bad throws that would absolutely be costly against a secondary like Seattle’s.
I’ll say Brady throws two interceptions and the Seahawks recover an additional fumble on Sunday.
4. Seahawks win 30-24.
New England’s offense is going to get on the scoreboard but Seattle will end up with more points at the end of the day.
I expect the Patriots’ points to come on offense exclusively — Brady will likely lead his team to three touchdowns and a field goal will probably get thrown in there when Seattle’s defense comes up with a stop.
On the other side, I think Seattle’s defense can score a touchdown to help make the difference.
Seattle has a defense unlike one the Patriots have faced this year, and as we saw something in last year’s Super Bowl — defense wins championships.
I think on Sunday Seattle will prove that again.