NFL Playoffs 2020: Ranking the best possible Super Bowl LIV matchups, with a huge rematch at No. 1
What would be the most watchable Super Bowl this year? We ranked them from 16 to 1
With eight teams left in the NFL playoffs, that means there are still 16 possible Super Bowls that could take place this year, and since some of those potential Super Bowls would likely end up being slightly more exciting than others, we've decided to rank all 16.
Not only did we rank all 16 possible Super Bowls, but we also included the odds that the game will happen. For instance, if you're one of the 11 people out there rooting for a Vikings-Texans Super Bowl this year, I have some bad news for you: Oddsmakers are only giving that game an 90-to-1 chance of happening, which means they don't really think there's a chance that those two teams will be meeting in Miami next month.
By the way, if you still haven't marked your calendar for the Super Bowl, you should go ahead and do that now: The game will be kicking off from South Florida on Feb. 2 and will be televised by Fox.
So what's the best potential matchup for Super Bowl LIV?
Let's get to the rankings and find out.
Best Super Bowl matchups
Odds of game happening (via DraftKings)
Odds of happening: 90-to-1
The biggest upside to this game would be that years of NFL misery would finally come to an end for at least one of these cities. Of the eight teams currently left in the playoffs, there are only three teams that have yet to win a Super Bowl, and these are two of them. The Vikings have the way more depressing Super Bowl history, as they've gone 0-4 in the NFL's biggest game, with their last loss coming during the 1976 season (the Vikings went to four of the first 11 Super Bowls, but they haven't been back since then). As for the Texans, they'd probably be happy just making it to the AFC Championship Game, and that's because they've never even made it that far. Since their expansion season in 2002, the Texans have never made it past the divisional round.
15. Vikings vs. Titans
Odds of happening: 90-to-1
I'm not sure anyone outside of Minneapolis or Nashville would be interested in watching this game, but I have to say, it would be kind of fitting if the NFL's 100th season were to end with these two teams playing in the Super Bowl, and I think this random guy on Twitter agrees with me.
If this game were to happen, it would mark the first time in NFL history that two No. 6 seeds both made it to the big game. Since the NFL playoffs were expanded in 1990, there have only been two teams that have gone into the postseason as a sixth seed and went on to win the Super Bowl (2005 Steelers, 2010 Packers). If the Titans and Vikings were to play in the big game, that means this bonkers NFL season would end with one more No. 6 seed winning it all.
14. Packers vs. Texans
Odds of happening: 50-to-1
Aaron Rodgers might not be in his prime anymore, but it would still be exciting to watch a quarterback duel between Rodgers and Deshaun Watson. The Texans secondary has been struggling all season, which means it wouldn't be surprising to see this game turn into a shootout. Based on that alone, that would make this a watchable game, so no Francesca, it is not crazy to want this game.
J.J. Watt would also probably be excited for this game since he went to college in Wisconsin.
13. 49ers vs. Titans
Odds of happening: 24-to-1
I'm not sure if Ryan Tannehill is the kind of guy who likes to rub things in to other people when they're wrong about something, but if he is, I have to think he'd highly enjoy playing in the Super Bowl this year -- you know, since it's being held in Miami. With the AFC being the home team this year, there's a good chance that the Titans would be practicing at the Dolphins' training facility, which I'm guessing would be kind of fun for Tannehill, who spent eight years in Miami to Tennessee in March. The week leading up to the game would definitely be all about Tannehill, who would likely spend seven straight days answering questions about his time in Miami, and if he's smart, he'd also spend seven straight days gloating about how good of a position he's now in. On the 49ers' end, Kyle Shanahan would probably spend the week doing his best to avoid any questions about the last time he was in the Super Bowl. You know, back in 2016, when he was the offensive coordinator for a Falcons team that blew a ... You know what, I'm not even going to bring it up.
12. Seahawks vs. Titans
Odds of happening: 75-to-1
If these two teams were to meet in the Super Bowl, it would actually give us something we almost never see in the NFL's biggest game: Two quarterbacks from the same draft class duking it out against each other. Both Russell Wilson and Ryan Tannehill were selected in the 2012 NFL Draft, with Tannehill going eighth overall to the Dolphins and Wilson going in the third round to the Seahawks. The last time we saw two quarterbacks from the same draft class face each other in a Super Bowl came 36 years ago when Jim Plunkett's Raiders beat Joe Theismann's Redskins 38-9 in Super Bowl XVIII. Those quarterbacks were both selected in the 1971 NFL Draft.
Also, if this Super Bowl happens, please give this person all the credit for speaking it into existence.
(Note: A Titans-Vikings game would also give us two quarterbacks from the same class since Kirk Cousins was also drafted in 2012).
11. 49ers vs. Texans
Odds of happening: 24-to-1
If the 49ers end up in the Super Bowl this year, it's pretty much a guarantee that the one highlight that will definitely be shown multiple times in the week leading up to the game is Joe Montana's game-winning touchdown pass to John Taylor in Super Bowl XXIII.
The iconic throw happened at the same stadium in Miami where Super Bowl LIV is being played. As for the actual game, remember to give the guy below credit for his prediction if the 49ers end up winning by five points.
Although this game doesn't sound exciting on paper -- because it screams 49ers blowout -- Deshaun Watson has a way to make any game exciting, so it would definitely be worth watching. Also, the 49ers could potentially set the record for most Super Bowls won in the same stadium. Besides Super Bowl XXIII, the 49ers also won Super Bowl XXIX in Miami.
10. Packers vs. Titans
Odds of happening: 50-to-1
This game would likely make Matt LaFleur the star of Super Bowl week, and that's because he spent the entire 2018 season with the Titans. Before taking the coaching job in Green Bay, LaFleur spent one year as Tennessee's offensive coordinator. Although the Titans didn't make the playoffs, they did finish the season 9-7. The Packers might even have an advantage in this game, and that's because LaFleur would have intimate knowledge of the Titans' personnel and coaching staff.
The guy below has been waiting patiently for a Packers-Titans Super Bowl, so for his sake, let's all hope it happens.
One other note about LaFleur: This game would mark his first time coaching in a Super Bowl since 2016, when he was the QB coach for a Falcons team that blew a 28 to ... You know what, once again, I'm not even going to bring it up. I don't want to rub it in to Falcons fans, because I'm pretty sure they're still not over that loss.
9. Vikings vs. Ravens
Odds of happening: 11-to-1
Half of America is cheering for this Super Bowl to happen, and apparently, it's only because they want to see the NFL's only two purple teams duke it out on the NFL's biggest stage. Seriously, I'm not kidding about people wanting this game to happen because of this whole purple thing.
"Purple Rain" on a loop? I like that idea, and you know what, I kind of agree with these people. I think I would find an all-purple Super Bowl aesthetically pleasing. The best part about this game is that we could get Mike Shanahan to do the coin toss since the two quarterbacks he drafted in 2012 with the Redskins -- Kirk Cousins and Robert Griffin -- would both be in uniform.
8. Vikings vs. Chiefs
Odds of happening: 18-to-1
With the NFL celebrating its 100th anniversary this season, it would be kind of fitting to end the year with a rematch of a Super Bowl that took place exactly 50 years ago. Back in Super Bowl IV, the Chiefs beat the Vikings 23-7. That being said, this game isn't higher up the list because we've already seen these two teams play in 2019. Back in Week 9, the Vikings couldn't even beat a Chiefs team that was being quarterbacked by Matt Moore, so I'm not sure how much of a chance I'd give Minnesota to beat a Chiefs team that has Patrick Mahomes. On a personal note, Vikings-Chiefs was my preseason prediction for Super Bowl LIV, so I'll be in a corner somewhere quietly hoping that this game happens so I can rub it in to everyone who made fun of my pick on Twitter.
7. Seahawks vs. Texans
Odds of happening: 75-to-1
This ranking might feel too high for a game involving the Texans, but I've decided that any game involving Russell Wilson and Deshaun Watson has to rank in the top 10 here. If you want a game filled with fundamental football, this definitely isn't for you, but if you want a game where bad offensive line play gets bailed out by two magician like quarterbacks, then you need to be rooting for Texans-Seahawks to happen like the guy below.
Sure, there will probably be 23 total sacks in this game, and every offensive play will break down -- only to be saved by whichever quarterback has the ball -- and the final score will probably be something like 32-26, because Seahawks games always seem to end in scores that have never happened, but despite all that, it will definitely be highly entertaining, so I'm all-in on a Houston-Seattle Super Bowl.
6. Packers vs. Ravens
Odds of happening: 5.5-to-1
It's almost fitting that this game is being played in Miami, because Miami (of Ohio) would be one of the big winners if the Ravens get to the Super Bowl. Ravens coach John Harbaugh was a graduate of Miami, which means the school would have produced at least one Super Bowl coach in two straight seasons (Sean McVay also went to Miami). This game would also reunite Packers coach Matt LaFleur with Robert Griffin III. LaFleur was the QB coach in Washington during RG3's first two years in the league (2012-13). Oh, and I think I forgot the most important part here: We'd be getting Aaron Rodgers vs. Lamar Jackson.
So who would win if these two teams played?
If I've learned one thing in life, it's that 5-year-olds know everything.
5. Packers vs. Chiefs
Odds of happening: 9-to-1
With the NFL celebrating its 100th anniversary, this would definitely be the most fitting game the league could ask for, and that's because it would be a rematch of the very first Super Bowl. Back in 1966, the season ended with Vince Lombardi and the Packers destroying the Chiefs 35-10 in Super Bowl I. Not only would the NFL get a game that would kind of bring the league's 100th anniversary celebration full circle, but the added bonus is that this year's version of Chiefs-Packers would give us a duel between two former NFL MVPs: Aaron Rodgers and Patrick Mahomes.
4. Seahawks vs. Ravens
Odds of happening: 9.5-to-1
If this Super Bowl happens, the NFL needs to cancel the MVP vote and just give the award to the quarterback who wins the game. These two quarterbacks spent most of the season as the MVP front-runners, and having the year end with both of them on the same field would make Super Bowl LIV a must-watch game. There's a good chance that Wilson and Jackson will end up as the top two vote-getters in the MVP race this year and if that happens, this game would mark the third time this century that the top two vote-getters have faced each other in the Super Bowl. The only two other times it happened came in 2009 (MVP Peyton Manning vs. runner-up Drew Brees) and 2016 (MVP Matt Ryan vs. runner-up Tom Brady). In both cases, the MVP lost in the Super Bowl, so maybe winning the award wouldn't be such a great thing for Lamar Jackson after all.
3. Seahawks vs. Chiefs
Odds of happening: 15-to-1
Russell Wilson vs. Patrick Mahomes. This game needs no other selling points.
The last time these two teams were on the same field together came back in December 2018, and both of these quarterbacks put on a show. In a 38-31 Seahawks win, not only did Wilson and Mahomes both throw three touchdown passes, but they also both finished as the second-leading rusher for their team. Basically, the defenses wouldn't even need to show up for this game because it would be three straight hours of offensive fireworks.
Also, I'm not going to lie, we need this game to happen for this person's well-being.
If the Seahawks were to win the Super Bowl, they'd become the first No. 5 seed to take home the Lombardi Trophy since the Giants in 2007.
2. 49ers vs. Chiefs
Odds of happening: 4.15-to-1
The Super Bowl is on Fox this year, and I have to think that there's nothing they would love more than having Patrick Mahomes going up against one of the NFL's most storied franchises in the 49ers. If this game happened, a win over the Chiefs would give the 49ers their sixth Super Bowl win in franchise history, which would tie the Steelers and Patriots for the most all-time.
As for Mahomes, this would be his biggest test of the year, and that's because he'd be facing a 49ers defense that finished No. 1 against the pass in 2019. During the regular season, the 49ers surrendered just 169.2 pass yards per game, which is a ridiculously low number when you consider that no other team allowed fewer than 180 yards per game. Knowing Mahomes though, he might be able to throw for 169.2 yards in one quarter.
1. 49ers vs. Ravens
Odds of happening: 2.3-to-1
There are roughly 100 reasons why this game is at No. 1, but since I don't have time to write all of them and you don't have time to read all of them, I'm just going to give you the CliffsNotes version of why this is the Super Bowl matchup we should all be hoping for.
For one, it will give us two of the most creative offenses in the NFL. The Ravens and 49ers finished first and second in the NFL in rushing yards this season, and although a game with 71 run plays doesn't sound that exciting, it would be in this case, and that's mainly because Lamar Jackson can make anything exciting. Also, despite all the run plays they usually call, the 49ers offense is equally fun to watch thanks to the creative play-calling from coach Kyle Shanahan.
Another reason we should want this game to happen is because these two teams gave us one of the best regular season games of the 2019 season. Back in Week 13, the Ravens knocked off the 49ers 20-17 after Justin Tucker hit a 49-yard field goal as time expired. Let's also not forget that this game would be a rematch of Super Bowl XLVII, or as most fans remember it, the game where the lights went out at the Superdome.
Anyway, let's take a quick poll, who wants to see a 49ers-Ravens rematch in the Super Bowl?
I could keep going, but I think you get the point. Everyone wants a 49ers-Ravens rematch.
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