The Kansas City Chiefs will face the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl 58 and will try to become the first team in roughly two decades to win back-to-back Lombardi Trophies. This is a return to the big stage for veteran tight end Travis Kelce and he could win Super Bowl MVP if he has an epic performance in Las Vegas.
But he’s facing an uphill battle on that front as no tight end in NFL history has ever won Super Bowl MVP. The award is overwhelmingly skewed toward quarterbacks as gunslingers of the winning have taken it home 32 times. It’s particularly hard for pass-catchers to get shine from voters as the QBs are normally credited for the success.
For example, in recent history, Rob Gronkowski caught six receptions for 67 yards and two touchdowns in the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ 31-9 rout of the Chiefs in Super Bowl 55. Yet, Tom Brady was still voted on as MVP even with Gronk’s efforts and a dominant performance by their defense.
So how can Kelce win Super Bowl MVP this year?
First off, a baseline requirement is Kansas City winning, as a player from the losing team has won the award just once in the entire history of the game. Next, Patrick Mahomes needs to struggle a bit in this game while he has a dominant effort. So we’re talking about the quarterback turning the ball over multiple times throughout the evening while Kelce delivers a 100+ yard, multi-TD performance. In that scenario, voters may recognize the tight end as being the one who stepped up when the offense needed big plays. But even then, they still may default to Mahomes and cite his ability to overcome early struggles as a reason for giving him the award.
Kelce has +1200 odds to win Super Bowl MVP at DraftKings Sportsbook.
This article can also be found in our Ultimate Guide to Super Bowl 58, presented by Frank’s Red Hot.