The 2023 NFL playoffs continue this Sunday, and Conference Championship weekend looks quite similar this year as it did in 2022. Three of the four teams that reached last year’s Super Bowl semis are back again this season – the Kansas City Chiefs, San Francisco 49ers and Cincinnati Bengals. The lone change is the top-seeded Philadelphia Eagles replacing the reigning champion Los Angeles Rams. With the NFC and AFC Championship Games rapidly approaching, let’s rank the four potential Super Bowl LVII Matchups:
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Ranking potential Super Bowl LVII Matchups
1. Kansas City Chiefs vs Philadelphia Eagles
Chiefs head coach Andy Reid going up against his former team… yes please! The story writes itself! Reid spent his first 14 seasons as an NFL head coach in Philadelphia, and even led them to their first Super Bowl appearance back in the 2004 season. Reid and the Eagles fell short in that Super Bowl, but the future Hall of Fame head coach got his title in Kansas City 15 years later. How sweet would it be to see Reid and Patrick Mahomes earn their second Lombardi Trophy against the team where Reid made his name.
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2. Kansas City Chiefs vs San Francisco 49ers
This would be a rematch of Super Bowl LIV from the 2019 season, which saw Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs overcome a 10-point 4th-quarter deficit to beat the 49ers 31-20 and bring Kansas City its first Lombardi Trophy. The Chiefs outscored the 49ers 21-0 in the 4th quarter of that Super Bowl win, something you know San Francisco head coach Kyle Shanahan wants to earn redemption for. 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy would become the first rookie to start a Super Bowl, assuming Jimmy Garoppolo isn’t back in the mix – is the moment too big for Mr. Irrelevant? Or will he continue to make history?
Also worth noting – the 49ers have won 12 straight games heading into the NFC Championship (it would be 13 if they reached the Super Bowl). Their last loss came in Week 7, when they fell 44-23 to none other than the Chiefs.
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3. Cincinnati Bengals vs San Francisco 49ers
Cincinnati has been to the Super Bowl on three occasions in franchise history. They are 0-3 in those games, and are one of 12 active NFL franchises who have never won a Super Bowl. Last year, they lost 23-20 to the Rams in Los Angeles. Their other two appearances came in the 1981 and 1988 seasons. Both times, they to lost Bill Walsh’s 49ers in one-possession games. Joe Burrow keeps re-writing Bengals history, and he can cement his status as a Cincinnati legend if he can enact revenge on the 49ers in Super Bowl LVII.
Aside from that, who wouldn’t want to see Burrow, Joe Mixon, Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins take on the NFL’s best defense. And you can’t forget about Brock Purdy, the 49ers’ 3rd string QB to start the season, looking to become the first rookie QB to win the Super Bowl.
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4. Cincinnati Bengals vs Philadelphia Eagles
Philadelphia has been the NFC’s top team all season, and with Jalen Hurts seemingly able to manage his shoulder injury, the Eagles’ offense is back to being one of the most exciting units in the NFL. On the flip side, all Joe Burrow and the Bengals do is show up when the lights are brightest. Can head coach Zac Taylor and Burrow lead Cincinnati to its first Super Bowl title? And you can’t forget the two best wide receiver duos in the game: AJ Brown and DeVonta Smith on one side, Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins on the other.
Conference Championship Round Schedule:
Sunday, January 29
NFC Championship Game:
San Francisco 49ers vs Philadelphia Eagles – 3:00 p.m. ET on Fox
- Where: Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
AFC Championship Game:
Cincinnati Bengals vs Kansas City Chiefs – 6:30 p.m. ET on CBS
- Where: Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri
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