The final countdown to Super Bowl LVIII in Las Vegas is in full swing as the Kansas City Chiefs and San Francisco 49ers gear up to meet at Allegiant Stadium on Sunday.
On Wednesday both teams were pictured taking the field during their respective practices after starting the week with a series of media appearances and press conferences.
Patrick Mahomes, Travis Kelce and the Kansas City Chiefs got their repetitions in at the Las Vegas Raiders’ headquarters. On the other hand, Brock Purdy, Christian McCaffrey and the 49ers practiced at the Fertitta Football Complex.
The defending champions have placed running back Jerick McKinnon and defensive end Charles Omenihu on injury reserve on Wednesday. McKinnon was limited during practice following a sports hernia surgery while Omenihu dealt with knee complications.
All-Pro guard Joe Thuney has been deemed questionable with a pectoral injury and is hopeful for a return on Sunday despite sitting out practice completely.
The Kansas City Chiefs practiced at the Raiders’ headquarters ahead of the Super Bowl
Stars Travis Kelce and Patrick Mahomes look to lead the Chiefs to their second straight title
Kelce had two touchdowns against the Bills and one more against the Ravens in the playoffs
Ahead of Sunday’s game, Kelce praised Mahomes for taking his game to ‘another level’ this past season as they hope to win their second straight title.
‘The one thing about Pat is his competitiveness,’ Kelce said of Mahomes. ‘He’s never satisfied with where he is. He’s always looking forward to how he can keep progressing, keep that steady incline of success going. That’s on and off the field. It’s fun to see him compete and have that desire, year in, year out, day in, day out.’
Super Bowl Sunday will also wrap up Kelce’s first season in his high profile relationship with popstar Taylor Swift. Their romance has been one of the regular talking points this season with Swift attending 12 Chiefs games so far.
The 14-time Grammy winner is expected to be in Las Vegas on Sunday despite having a show in Tokyo the evening prior. While many could see a relationship with someone of Swift’s celebrity as a distraction, Mahomes remained adamant that Kelce is the ‘hardest working guy in the building.’
‘He’s handled it great. I think what I’ve always known about Travis is he loves to follow his dreams outside the building,’ Mahomes said. ‘Obviously, he’s in a great relationship now and he embraces that, but when he gets in the building, it’s all about football.’
Looking to spoil the Chiefs’ party are the 49ers who rallied behind Purdy and McCaffrey to secure a 12-5 record this past season.
Brock Purdy and the San Francisco 49ers will look to spoil the Chiefs’ back-to-back title hopes
Running back Christian McCaffrey leads the 49ers in rushing yards with 1,495 this season
Tight end George Kittle is listed questionable with a toe injury and was limited during practice
The top-seeded NFC team will walk into Sunday’s game with four players listed questionable. Namely, cornerback Ambry Thomas, linebacker Oren Burks, defensive end Arik Armstead and tight end George Kittle.
San Francisco have the momentum of back-to-back playoff wins over Green Bay and Detroit as they are favored by odds makers to leave Sin City victorious.
The Chiefs are making their fourth Super Bowl appearance in five years, two of which they have won. Kansas City defeated a different-looking 49ers team in 2020 before besting the Philadelphia Eagles in 2023.
A win on Sunday would make Kansas City the first back-to-back Super Bowl champions since the New England Patriots in 2003 and 2004.