It was a long and strange trip for both the San Francisco 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs during the 2023 season, but both teams managed to be the last two standing and will compete against each other in Super Bowl LVIII.
The final game of the season between the 49ers and Chiefs is to be played on Feb. 11 at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. It’s the first time in NFL history that the Super Bowl will be held in the city, and it’s a rematch of Super Bowl LIV.
The 49ers got to the Super Bowl thanks to a 17-point comeback victory over the Detroit Lions in the NFC Championship. San Francisco won the game, 34-31. But it was far from pretty, and it came with questions about the defense’s effort.
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San Francisco will need to be on its A-plus game to be able to top Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs. The Chiefs topped the Baltimore Ravens in the AFC Championship.
The Chiefs started the 2023 season with high expectations, but the offense was just off all year long. Mahomes never found a consistent rhythm with his weapons until the playoffs. That’s when Travis Kelce, Rashee Rice and Isiah Pacheco really came alive to set themselves apart.
The defense has also been a bright spot during the season. Chris Jones, L’Jarius Sneed and others stepped up to make Kansas City a top-five defense in the NFL.
Now, it’s got one giant task to do: Somehow contain Christian McCaffrey, Deebo Samuel and Brock Purdy to win the Super Bowl.
Can Mahomes pick up the third ring of his career? Can the 49ers end their Super Bowl drought? Will Brock Purdy mystify critics of his game? All those questions will be answered Sunday.
Read below for what else you need to know.
When is the Super Bowl?
Super Bowl LVIII takes place on Sunday, Feb. 11. Kickoff will likely happen at 6:30 p.m. ET. The game is broadcast on CBS.
Where is the Super Bowl?
The teams in Super Bowl LVIII will compete for the Vince Lombardi Trophy at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas – the home of the Las Vegas Raiders. It will be the first time the stadium will host the big game.
Who will sing the national anthem at the Super Bowl?
Reba McEntire will sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” before the game.
McEntire is included in a pregame entertainment lineup that includes Post Malone and Andra Day. Malone will sing “America the Beautiful.” Day will sing “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” also known as the Black national anthem.
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The pregame entertainment will also feature American Sign Language performances. Actor Daniel Durant will perform the national anthem in ASL. Actress Anjel Piñero will sign “America the Beautiful.” Actor Shaheem Sanchez will perform “Lift Every Voice and Sing.”
Who is performing at halftime?
Usher was confirmed as the Super Bowl headline back in September. Usher has also been considering guests for possible collaborations onstage. Some of his top songs include features from Alicia Keys, Pitbull, Lil Jon and Ludacris.
“It’s an honor of a lifetime to finally check a Super Bowl performance off my bucket list. I can’t wait to bring the world a show unlike anything else they’ve seen from me before,” Usher said, per Variety. “Thank you to the fans and everyone who made this opportunity happen. I’ll see you real soon.”
DPS will produce the Apple Music Super Bowl Halftime Show with Roc Nation and Jesse Collins.
Sanchez will perform the ASL rendition of the show.
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History on the line
The NFL has not seen a back-to-back Super Bowl champion since the 2003 and 2004 New England Patriots. With comparisons between Mahomes and Tom Brady beginning to ramp up, Mahomes could add another accolade to his already impressive resume – back-to-back champion.
Mahomes and the Chiefs defeated the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LVII last year.