Do you believe in unlikelihoods?  

It's unclear how familiar Patrick Mahomes is with the underdog story of 'Average Joes' in the movie 'Dodgeball', but reflecting on his first three seasons as a starter in the NFL, it's fair to assume his answer to the question posed by fictitious ESPN anchor Cotton McKnight would be an emphatic yes. 

Since the Kansas City Chiefs installed Mahomes as the starter in 2018, he has turned achieving the unlikely into an art form. 

From a league MVP award in his first season, three double-digit playoff comebacks and a Super Bowl MVP in his second, Mahomes has defined himself as a quarterback for whom the seemingly impossible always appears well within his grasp.

On Sunday, he will attempt to become the first quarterback to win back-to-back Super Bowls since his Tampa Bay Buccaneers counterpart Tom Brady achieved the feat at the end of the 2004 season. 

It would be a fitting way to cap arguably the most remarkable three-season spell by any quarterback in NFL history, and here we examine the numbers behind his stratospheric rise.

Pre-draft concerns prove inaccurate

When Mahomes entered the NFL Draft, he was viewed as a prospect with phenomenal upside but one whose unorthodox, gunslinging style risked inefficiency and turnovers at the highest level. 

The Chiefs were undeterred by such concerns, however, taking a significant gamble in trading up from 27th in the first round to select the former Texas Tech standout with the 10th overall pick.

It is a move that has been overwhelmingly justified, with any doubts over his accuracy completely quashed.

Mahomes ranks first in completions all-time among quarterbacks in their first three full seasons (which is defined as a campaign where a quarterback attempts at least 100 passes). He has connected on 1,092 of his passes, doing so at a completion percentage of 66.1 that, using the same criteria, puts him sixth all-time. 

Only five quarterbacks have hit their team-mates more consistently in their first three full seasons, but there are none that have done a better job of avoiding turnovers and putting the ball in the end zone.

Prolific and protective of the ball

First in passing yards among quarterbacks in their first three full seasons with 13,868, Mahomes also leads the way in touchdown passes. 

He has 114 TD throws through the air while being intercepted on just 23 occasions during that same span. That disparity gives him the all-time lead with a touchdown to interception ratio of 4.96.

What is even more impressive is that Mahomes has largely succeeded in taking care of the ball despite being very aggressive in pushing it downfield. 

His yards per attempt average of 8.39 is fifth all-time among signal-callers in their first three full seasons, while for his career he is the all-time leader in adjusted net yards per attempt (8.49). 

The combination of Mahomes' high yards per attempt, impressive completion percentage and unmatched TD-INT ratio has left him without an equal in the most widely used measure of quarterback performance.

Unprecedented early success

Passer rating is viewed by many as an imperfect metric when it comes to analysing quarterbacks, but the fact Mahomes is the all-time leader with a rating of 109.3 across his first three full seasons is illustrative of the utter dominance he has enjoyed to this point. 

Mahomes also boasts the highest career passer rating in the regular season (108.7) and the postseason (109.8) and it is his incredible level of performance in the playoffs that has ensured he will be the first quarterback in the NFL to start multiple Super Bowls aged 25 or younger. 

Should the Chiefs prevail, the 25-year-old will break Brady's record and become the youngest starting quarterback to win multiple Super Bowls, Brady having claimed his second at the age of 26. 

It was a scenario few envisaged when he left Texas Tech, but the Chiefs had the foresight to understand he was a talent that could elevate them to the league's elite.

The devastating impact and speed with which he did so was what took the league by surprise, yet few are now shocked by the exploits of a player who makes the amazing look startlingly routine. 

There is perhaps no greater sign of the aura Mahomes has quickly established than the fact he and the Chiefs are favoured to deny the man regarded as the greatest quarterback ever a seventh Lombardi Trophy. 

Super Bowl LV will not be an underdog story for Mahomes and there are unlikely to be many rubbing their eyes in disbelief on Sunday if, as he has done so often, he delivers yet another tale of the unexpected.

Kansas City Chiefs head coach Andy Reid believes Patrick Mahomes can be as influential as LeBron James and impact the world.

Los Angeles Lakers star James has helped lead the fight for racial equality and social justice.

Reid believes Mahomes, who is preparing for the Chiefs' Super Bowl LV clash against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, can be as influential as the four-time NBA champion and four-time MVP.

"Yeah, absolutely. I think he's got a way about him where he understands people and they are interested in things he has to say, or back, and believe in," he told a news conference on Tuesday.

"So, I think that presents yourself with a good combination to whatever platform that you want to support or take, that you have that ability."

Mahomes, 25, has already won a Super Bowl to go with a Super Bowl MVP and NFL MVP honours.

The quarterback said James was one of the athletes he had modelled himself on.

"There's a lot of great athletes that are doing things the right way. LeBron is one of them. He's someone that I can talk to and get advice from but there's others too," Mahomes said.

"There's a ton of people that are using their voice to make a difference in this world.

"I try and take from them and kind of use my own voice in my own way to make an impact in my community."

Bruce Arians said he envisioned a trip to the Super Bowl after the Tampa Bay Buccaneers signed "missing piece" Tom Brady.

The Buccaneers are preparing for their first Super Bowl since 2003 as they look ahead to facing the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday.

Brady, meanwhile, will be playing his 10th Super Bowl and looking for his seventh win. No other player has even featured in the game seven times.

Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians said the Super Bowl was on his mind after the team landed Brady.

"I thought that was the missing piece and then Jason [Licht, general manager] did such a great job of adding pieces as we went along [with] Rob [Gronkowski], Leonard [Fournette], Antonio [Brown] and other guys. Ross Cockrell has been one of the best pickups we've had the entire season," he told a news conference on Tuesday.

"So yeah, I thought it was possible and that was our goal, because I knew how good of a football team we had and what we were missing.

"We were missing that belief that we were good enough."

The Buccaneers will be the first team to play a Super Bowl at their home stadium.

They are the fifth team all-time to win three road games in a single postseason, and three of the four before them won the Super Bowl.

Asked about Brady's passion for winning, Arians said the quarterback's approach impacted the whole team.

"I think the great quarterbacks all have it. They have the ability to will themselves on other people to make sure that everybody has bought in to the cause," he said.

"The cause is a ring – putting a championship in your trophy case. Tom brings that attitude every single day and it permeates through the entire locker room."

It's the man who has defined the last two decades in the NFL versus the man most likely to cast a considerable shadow over the 2020s in Super Bowl LV: Tom Brady will look to add to his remarkable legacy against a quarterback well placed to live up to it in Patrick Mahomes.

There are, of course, several other subplots to consider in the first Super Bowl to see a team play in its home stadium. Yet the overriding narrative in Sunday's matchup between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium surrounds the two men under center and the significant contrast between them.

At 43, Brady is the man who continues to defy the odds, casting himself free from the shackles of the Patriots' talent-starved offense to find new life with Tampa, proving he can still methodically dissect defenses and, when necessary, hit members of his star-studded cast of receivers with the deep pass.

It is Mahomes, however, who will be expected to provide the explosiveness in this battle of old versus still relatively new. Like Brady, Mahomes can carve teams up from the pocket, but what makes him so difficult to defend is his ability to connect on otherworldly passes when throwing off-platform and when on the run, taking a flair for improvisation to levels never before seen in the NFL.

The stage is set for a fascinating battle between two players who have each left indelible marks on the game, but how do their numbers stack up? Ahead of a potentially captivating end to a season like no other, we compared the data on the two men who will be centre stage as the destination of the Lombardi Trophy is decided.

Brady's wide lead

Given his significantly greater experience, his scarcely believable longevity and unparalleled success, it is no surprise that the counting stats overwhelmingly favour Brady.

Brady has 47 game-winning drives in the fourth quarter in the regular season compared to seven for Mahomes. In the postseason, Brady's advantage in that area is 14-1.

The New England Patriots legend has 33 playoff wins to seven for Mahomes, who should rapidly improve on that tally if his early career success continues.

Brady has racked up 44 touchdown throws of 50 yards or more, with Mahomes having put up 12 across his three regular seasons as a starter.

However, Mahomes already has half as many 400-yard regular-season games as the 10 Brady has in his career. He is a third of the way there in terms of drawing level in games with at least four touchdown passes, Mahomes having produced 11 such performances with Brady on 33.

And there are several other areas in which Mahomes has already closed the gap.

Mahomes' early-career magic

Illustrative of the incredibly high level of play Mahomes has reached and maintained during his time as a starter is his passer rating, which has never dipped below 105 in those three seasons. To put that into context, Brady has had a passer rating of 105 or above just four times in his career (2007, 2010, 2011, 2016).

Similarly, Mahomes has averaged at least eight yards per attempt in each of his years as a starter while Brady has achieved that feat only three occasions (2007, 2011, 2016).

Mahomes is level with Brady with two games of at least 450 passing yards and they also each have a pair of games with six touchdown passes.

Owing to his superior athleticism, Mahomes has surpassed Brady for playoff rushing yards. Brady has rushed for 135 yards in the postseason – his lack of a playoff touchdown on the ground perhaps surprising for arguably the greatest exponent of the quarterback sneak.

Mahomes has 173 yards on the ground in the playoffs and four touchdowns, including one in last year's Super Bowl LIV win over the San Francisco 49ers. He will undoubtedly be expected to have an impact as a runner on Sunday and it is clear where he has the advantage as a thrower.

Deep ball to close the gap?

It speaks to Mahomes' astonishing skill set that he is already established as one of the best downfield throwers in NFL history.

Looking at their respective air yards per attempt averages, there doesn't appear to be much to choose between Brady and Mahomes in aggressiveness in pushing the ball deep. Brady averages 8.25 air yards for his career, with Mahomes slightly ahead on 8.44.

The divide comes in a comparison of their success in going downfield.

Indeed, on passes of 20 air yards or more, Brady has a completion percentage of 32.6 per cent, those completions resulting in 14,206 yards, 116 touchdowns, 62 interceptions and a passer rating of 86.

In his short time in the league, Mahomes has connected on 41.6 per cent of such throws for 3,258 yards, 40 touchdowns, 10 interceptions and a 109.6 passer rating.

Mahomes' superiority as a deep passer is further reflected by his and Brady's performance in adjusted net yards per pass attempt (ANY/A), which is better used as a measure of overall team effectiveness in the passing game but is inflated by the long gains that have become a staple for the Chiefs with Mahomes under center.

Astoundingly, in his relatively short time as a starting quarterback, Mahomes has claimed the all-time lead in adjusted net yards per attempt among signal-callers with at least 1,500 throws. He has averaged 8.49 ANY/A in his career, with Aaron Rodgers (7.42) a distant second and Brady even further back on 7.10.

Mahomes' best season in the context of ANY/A was his MVP campaign of 2018 when he averaged 8.89 yards. In his decorated career, Brady only came close to matching that in 2007, when he put up 8.88 ANY/A as a record-breaking Patriots offense steamrolled its way to an unbeaten regular season.

Beyond that, Brady has only one other regular season that was superior to Mahomes' efforts in 2019 (8.38) and 2020 (8.33), which came in 2016 when he finished with 8.81 ANY/A en route to a fifth Super Bowl title.

Mahomes has yet to deliver a repeat effort as impressive as his 2018 campaign, but rarely has Brady succeeded in matching the downfield exploits of his counterpart.

A win away from becoming the first quarterback to claim back-to-back Super Bowls since Brady did so at the end of the 2004 season, Mahomes has a long way to go to replicate the achievements of the player whose six rings are the most in NFL history.

However, his evident advantage as a deep-ball thrower could be what makes the difference in Mahomes and Kansas City defeating the Bucs on their own turf and narrowing the gap for the quarterback viewed as the best bet to eventually knock Brady off the top of the mountain.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady is aiming to surpass "idol" Michael Jordan by winning his seventh Super Bowl ring.

No player has won more Super Bowl titles or appeared in more NFL showpieces than six-time champion Brady, who will lead the Buccaneers against reigning champions the Kansas City Chiefs in Super Bowl LV on Sunday.

Chicago Bulls and NBA great Jordan also won six championship rings during his Hall of Fame basketball career.

As Brady stands on the cusp of a seventh Lombardi trophy, the 43-year-old superstar told reporters on Monday: "Michael [Jordan] is one of my sports idols.

"I think he's pretty incredible and for me it's just about being a part of great teams.

"To have the opportunity to play in this game means a lot to me. It's a lot of commitment and sacrifice by a lot of guys.

"Obviously we're one game away from the ultimate goal in this sport. I've been a part of that ultimate goal six other times so they are all different and have all meant something a little different to me. They've all been unique in their own way. 

"It would be cool to accomplish it this time, I don't compare them to the other times, those were all magical moment of my life and no one can ever take those away from me.

"Hopefully we can finish this season strong and win a Super Bowl. That's why we're here, that's why we're playing, to make for a really magical season for us."

Brady – who will go head-to-head with reigning Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes in Super Bowl LV on home soil – has more playoff wins since turning 35 (17) than any other quarterback has in his entire career, per Stats Perform.

Tampa Bay's Brady became the third player all-time with three-plus touchdown passes and three-plus interceptions in a conference championship game, joining Joe Montana (1981 NFC Championship) and Mark Malone (1984 AFC Championship), after the Buccaneers topped the Green Bay Packers in the NFC decider.

The 31-26 win in Green Bay was also the fourth time Brady has thrown three-plus interceptions in a playoff game, and his teams are 3-1 in those matchups (most such wins all-time) – his sides are 0-9 when he has three-plus interceptions in a regular-season game.

It was the 20th occasion Brady has led his team to 30-plus points in a postseason game – no other player has even half that total (second is Troy Aikman with nine). Brady's teams are 18-2 in those games.

Brady will feature in his 10th Super Bowl – the next most by a player is six by Mike Lodish and Stephen Gostkowski, after the Buccaneers became the fifth team all-time to win three road games in a single postseason.

Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes said young athletes are "crazy" if they do not look up to Tampa Bay Buccaneers superstar Tom Brady ahead of his 10th Super Bowl appearance.

No player has won more Super Bowl titles or appeared in more NFL showpieces than six-time champion Brady, who will lead the Buccaneers against Mahomes and reigning champions the Chiefs in Super Bowl LV on Sunday.

Brady has defied 'Father Time' – the evergreen 43-year-old guiding the Buccaneers to their first Super Bowl since 2003, and his first with the franchise since arriving from the New England Patriots at the start of the season.

Mahomes – the Super Bowl MVP last season – hailed the future Hall of Famer ahead of the pair's blockbuster showdown in Tampa.

"If you're a young athlete and you play any sport and you don't look up to guys like Tom Brady then you're crazy," Mahomes – the 2018 NFL MVP – told reporters on Monday.

"The guy that has had success year in and year out, continues to make himself better and not be satisfied with where he's at… he's the type of greatness that you strive to be like and be towards as you grow up.

"For me, I grew up watching him play and he's still here playing and he's still at the top of the game. For me, I just need to watch him and watch the things that he does on and off the field in order to figure out the best way to make me the best player possible."

"The way he's able to dissect defenses before the snap is something I truly admire," Mahomes added. "I'm trying to get to that level. The way he's able to move within the pocket and be able to reset his feet and be completely calm and still make the throw right on the money no matter who's around him is something I can continue to work on.

"As I continue in my career, I'm just going to try to do whatever I can to watch the tape on him because he's doing it the right way. You can tell by how many Super Bowl championships he has and the rings on his fingers."

Mahomes joined Kurt Warner, Brady and Russell Wilson as the only quarterbacks to reach the Super Bowl twice in their first four NFL seasons after the Chiefs took down the Buffalo Bills in the AFC Championship Game.

If the Chiefs are victorious, Mahomes will join Brady as the only QBs to win it twice in that span.

As Brady left the door open to prolonging his career beyond the age of 45, the 25-year-old Mahomes said: "I want to play as long as they let me. In order to do that, I have to take care of my body as much as I take care of everything else on the field.

"If you want to play this sport for a long time, how physical as it is, you have to invest as much time into your body as you do anything else. I've learned more and more in my young career so far about what I can do to keep myself available and healthy and try to be in the best nutritional state I can be in. I feel like I can be better."

Tampa Bay Buccaneers superstar Tom Brady said he will "definitely consider" playing in the NFL beyond the age of 45.

Brady is preparing to make his 10th Super Bowl appearance as the Buccaneers face reigning champions the Kansas City Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa on Sunday.

The evergreen 43-year-old quarterback has defied 'Father Time' to lead the Buccaneers to their first Super Bowl since 2003, and his first with the franchise since arriving from the New England Patriots at the start of the season.

As Brady eyes a record-extending seventh Lombardi trophy, the future Hall of Famer is open to extending his career.

"Definitely. I'd definitely consider that," Brady said on Monday. "It's a physical sport. Just the perspective I have on that is you never know when that moment is.

"Just because it's a contact sport. There's a lot of training that goes into it. And it has to be 100 percent commitment from myself to keep doing it."

Brady added: "I think I'll know when it's time. I don't know when that time will come. But I think I'll know. And I'll understand that I gave everything I could to give to this game.

"You put a lot into it. I don't think I could ever go at this game half-ass. I've gotta put everything into it. When I put it all out there, [when] I feel like I can't do it anymore, I don't feel like I can commit to the team in the way that the team needs me, then I think that's when it's probably time to walk away."

Brady – who will go head-to-head with reigning Super Bowl MVP Patrick Mahomes in Super Bowl LV on home soil – now has more playoff wins since turning 35 (17) than any other quarterback has in his entire career, per Stats Perform.

Tampa Bay's Brady became the third player all-time with three-plus touchdown passes and three-plus interceptions in a conference championship game, joining Joe Montana (1981 NFC Championship) and Mark Malone (1984 AFC Championship), after the Buccaneers topped the Green Bay Packers in the NFC decider.

The 31-26 win in Green Bay was also the fourth time Brady has thrown three-plus interceptions in a playoff game, and his teams are 3-1 in those matchups (most such wins all-time) – his sides are 0-9 when he has three-plus interceptions in a regular-season game.

It was the 20th occasion Brady has led his team to 30-plus points in a postseason game – no other player has even half that total (second is Troy Aikman with nine). Brady's teams are 18-2 in those games.

Brady will feature in his 10th Super Bowl – the next most by a player is six by Mike Lodish and Stephen Gostkowski, after the Buccaneers became the fifth team all-time to win three road games in a single postseason.

As Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers attempt to do what only one team managed to do in the regular season and defeat Patrick Mahomes, the six-time Super Bowl champion warned future foes that the Kansas City Chiefs star is only going to get better. 

Brady and the Bucs face Mahomes and the Chiefs in a mouth-watering Super Bowl LV matchup in Tampa on Sunday. 

Mahomes is trying to cap a spectacular start to his career as an NFL starter with a second successive Lombardi Trophy, having led the Chiefs back from a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit against the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LIV last year. 

That game saw him add a Super Bowl MVP to the regular-season MVP award he won in his first year as a starter with the Chiefs. 

His incredible achievements have many believing Mahomes is on his way to potentially dethroning Brady as the greatest quarterback of all time. 

And Brady expects Mahomes - who was rested in Week 17 when Kansas City were beaten by the Los Angeles Chargers - to build further on an astonishing three seasons in the years to come. 

Asked about Mahomes' progress from their meeting in the AFC Championship game in January 2019, when Brady's New England Patriots knocked off the Chiefs, the 43-year-old replied: "I think he's only elevated from that point on. 

"That year he was the MVP of the league, last year he came back and got off to a great start, dealt with some injuries, I know he separated his kneecap, that's a pretty tough injury, but fought through that, didn't have the same statistical year as he had in 2018, but goes on to win Super Bowl MVP.

"That's an amazing accomplishment to win MVP in 18, win the Super Bowl in 19 and then this year, to have the kind of year he's had, which is probably more similar to the year he had in 2018. I just think he's going to keep improving.

"I don't know him that well, I know quite a few people that do know him and they say great things about Pat. The times that I've been around him I've really enjoyed. 

"He's got a great maturity, great leader, got great charisma. It always speaks a lot when the players he plays with say great things about him. He's got a great relationship with his receivers, I think that always says a lot.

"I think there's a lot of things that make him a great player, obviously his physical skill set. I think he's got the ability to focus when the moments are the biggest and deliver for his team, that's probably the mark of any great athlete is coming through in the clutch and I think he's off to a great start in his career doing that."

Bruce Arians believes if there was a player who could match Tom Brady's incredible NFL career, it would be Patrick Mahomes.

Mahomes and Brady are preparing to go head-to-head when the Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers meet in Super Bowl LV on February 7.

Brady, 43, will play in his 10th Super Bowl and aim to win it for a seventh time. No other player has even played in seven, with Mike Lodish and Stephen Gostkowski having featured in six.

He is also a four-time Super Bowl MVP and three-time NFL MVP, honours Mahomes has won once previously.

Buccaneers head coach Arians said Mahomes, 25, was capable of matching Brady.

"I think there's so much that goes into that. There's 21 others guy on your team," he told a news conference on Thursday.

"If it was a throwing contest, hell yeah, he'd go get it, but there's a lot of things that happen in different seasons and what Tom has done is historic.

"But there's no doubt that if there was a player who could do it, it would be Patrick."

Mahomes goes into the Super Bowl having won 25 of his past 26 starts (including the postseason). Brady (2003-04) and Jim McMahon (1984-87) are the only other quarterbacks to win 25 of 26 at any points in their careers, and both went 26 of 27.

While the Chiefs are aiming for back-to-back championships, the Buccaneers are in the Super Bowl for the first time since the end of the 2002 season.

Along with Brady, Tampa Bay also landed Rob Gronkowski ahead of this season, and Arians hailed the duo's impact.

"I didn't know about Gronk's work ethic, it's unbelievable. He comes in early, stays late, is great, but he's Gronk so he's got that great personality to go with his work ethic," he said.

"You knew Tom was a great leader. With COVID I don't go in the locker room very much, but those two guys brought something extremely special because they've been there and done it and when young players see that, they listen and you see two totally different personalities doing it the same way."

Tom Brady said his first season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers had been "magical" as he prepares for Super Bowl LV.

Brady has led the Buccaneers into the showpiece for the first time since the end of the 2002 season, and the quarterback will line up in his 10th Super Bowl when Tampa Bay face the Kansas City Chiefs on February 7.

While the Buccaneers have that huge game ahead, the 43-year-old said his first campaign with Tampa Bay had been special.

"As it's played out, I've just thought, 'Wow, this has really been a magical year'," Brady told a news conference on Thursday.

"For me as a player to switch teams, that takes a lot and to move my family and to go to a different conference and then to keep building the way we did and develop a rapport with the guys that we have here, so much about football is about the relationships you get with your team-mates, your coaches.

"It's certainly the fact that we're still playing feels really good for me and understand we've put a lot into it and hopefully we can go finish the job, that would be the best part about the season is winning the last game, it's always been a goal, win the last game of the year.

"We've got an opportunity to do it, it's certainly not going to be easy, it's going to take everything we've got, we're going up against a great, championship-level team and it's going to take our best."

Brady will be aiming for his seventh Super Bowl win. No other player has even played in the game seven times (Mike Lodish and Stephen Gostkowski have featured in six).

While Brady is preparing for his 10th Super Bowl, Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians will lead a team in the showpiece for the first time.

Brady was full of praise for the 68-year-old, who is in his second season in charge of Tampa Bay.

"He's a great man, he's a great leader, he's a great person, he's a great friend, he's very loyal, he's just got a great way about communicating effectively with everybody around here and everybody has a great affection for him for the person he is," he said.

"There's nobody that ever would say anything bad about BA. He's so endearing to everybody and I think everyone wants to win for him and I think that's what you want to do for a coach, you want to get out there and you want to win for him.

"He puts a lot into it, expects a lot out of it, has high expectations for us every day in practice and just really excited for him to be recognised in the way that he is.

"I know he's two-time coach of the year, but just done an amazing job this year with the team in really adverse situations and just love playing for him."

Bruce Arians says there is no chance he will retire after Super Bowl LV if the Tampa Bay Buccaneers dethrone the Kansas City Chiefs.

The Buccaneers beat the Green Bay Packers 31-26 in the NFC Championship Game last weekend to set up a showdown with the defending champions a week on Sunday.

Tampa will be the first side to have home advantage for the Super Bowl in NFL history when they do battle with the Chiefs.

Arians quit in 2017 after five seasons with the Arizona Cardinals due to medical concerns, but returned two years later to take over as Buccaneers head coach.

The wily 68-year-old says he has no intention of walking away if he lifts the Vince Lombardi Trophy for the first time next week, providing owners the Glazer family are happy for him to stay on.

"Hell no. I'm going for two," Arians told 95.3 WDAE when asked if he might sign off on a high note.

"There's no doubt. If the Glazers will have me back, I'll be back."

The legendary Tom Brady has showed age is no barrier by inspiring the Buccaneers' run to the Super Bowl in his first season with the franchise.

Asked what he would have told general manager Jason Licht if he had told him Tampa would play in a Super Bowl with Brady as quarterback when he took over as head coach, Arians quipped: "What are you smoking or drinking? And get me some."

In the win over the Packers, Brady became the third player all-time with three-plus touchdown passes and three-plus interceptions in a conference championship game.

It was the 20th occasion Brady has led a team to 30 or more points in a postseason game – no other player has even managed half of that total – and the 43-year-old is set to feature in his 10th Super Bowl, four more than any other player in history.

Kansas City Chiefs offensive tackle Eric Fisher is set to sit out Super Bowl LV against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after suffering a torn Achilles tendon.

Chiefs head coach Andy Reid confirmed the injury a day after the reigning NFL champions topped the Buffalo Bills 38-24 in the AFC Championship Game on Sunday.

Fisher – a two-time Pro Bowler after being selected first in the 2013 NFL Draft – won the Super Bowl with the Chiefs last season as Kansas City claimed their first championship in 50 years.

But the 30-year-old will not feature in back-to-back Super Bowls after being helped off the field against the Bills at Arrowhead Stadium.

Fisher played in all 15 regular-season games this campaign and both playoff matchups for the Chiefs.

Kansas City's offensive-line depth has been tested this season due to injuries and players opting out before the start of training campaign.

Ahead of the February 7 Super Bowl at Raymond Jones Stadium – the home of Tom Brady's Buccaneers – Reid told reporters on Monday: "They're talented guys.

"In some cases we've had some young guys step in and ... we've had some older guys step in. That combination has been able to get us through some games here. Most of all, I think the quarterback trusts them, as do the running backs.''

Should the Chiefs retain their crown, star quarterback Patrick Mahomes would be the youngest starting QB (25) to win multiple Super Bowls, surpassing Brady (26).

Mahomes joined Kurt Warner, Brady and Russell Wilson as the only quarterbacks to reach the Super Bowl twice in their first four NFL seasons, per NFL Research. The reigning Super Bowl MVP will have to beat Brady to join him as the only QBs to win it twice in that span.

 

Josh Allen "didn't perform well enough" for the Buffalo Bills as they missed out on a place in the Super Bowl with a 38-24 loss to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday.

Bills quarterback Allen completed 28 of 48 passes for 287 yards and two touchdowns in the AFC Championship Game, while he rushed for 88 yards on seven carries.

However, an interception at the start of the fourth quarter preceded a Kansas City touchdown on the next drive to put the Chiefs out of sight.

Allen felt he forced things at times and was frustrated the Bills twice settled for field goals despite being within the Chiefs' 10-yard line.

"We didn't execute how we should've. I didn't perform well enough for this team. You're going against the reigning Super Bowl champs, who were 15-1, the number one seed at Arrowhead, if you're not going to have your A game, you're not going to win the game. That's what it was," he said.

"A couple of decisions early on, trying to press in the second half, I got things going a little bit better, but our red zone efficiency settled for field goals and you've got to score touchdowns against these guys. That's basically it.

"In the first half, I thought we moved the ball well, or well enough. We got down into the red zone and couldn't get the ball into the endzone.

"We got down there, threw an interception, a couple of bad decisions on my part. Just the communication aspect of it too. They did a good job of being able to check out their blitzes, not really allow us any time to get back to what we were originally going to run.

"Again, it comes down to decision making and putting the ball where it needed to be and I didn't do that well enough tonight."

Asked if he was pushing to go for touchdowns on the fourth downs inside the Chief's 10-yard line, he added: "I mean, that's the coach's decision. We had three downs to get in there prior and we didn't do our job.

"Like I said, lack of communication, lack of execution down there and it falls on our shoulders."

Buffalo head coach Sean McDermott admitted with the benefit of hindsight that he might have tried his luck in one of those instances.

"I thought about it in both occasions really. Maybe if I had to do it all over again, I would have maybe went for one of them," he said.

"The one before the half for sure. I wanted to get points. We were having trouble coming up with points and I wanted to have something to show for it going into the half, especially knowing they were getting the ball after half.

"I will look back at that and I will re-evaluate, especially the one after the half there. As a team, we will learn from this experience."

There were several confrontations towards the end of the game, with Allen sparking one by throwing the ball at the head of Alex Okafor.

Allen regretted letting his emotions get to him but feels confident Buffalo will not have to experience another 27-year wait to reach this stage again.

"It's going to fuel us, I have no doubt in my mind that we will be back. This is a team that fought hard to the end, a team that loves each other," he said.

"We're still young and we're only going to get better. That's one thing I got from this. We're close."

Patrick Mahomes going up against Tom Brady is a prospect that should lead to a "heck of a football game" at Super Bowl LV, says Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid.

The legendary Brady led the Tampa Bay Buccaneers to the showpiece in his first season with the team as they overcame the Green Bay Packers 31-26 in the NFC Championship Game.

Later on Sunday, superstar quarterback Mahomes guided the Chiefs to a second consecutive Super Bowl in a 38-24 triumph over the Buffalo Bills.

The thought of Brady, considered by many as the greatest QB of all time after winning six rings with New England Patriots, going up against Mahomes is an exciting one, not least for Chiefs coach Reid.

"Yeah, it seems like we've had a couple of those [Mahomes v Brady games] and every one of them is tremendous," Reid told reporters.

"I wouldn't expect this to be different, they got a tremendous team there. Those two have a lot of respect for each other, I remember when Tom came into the locker room after the championship game and spoke to Patrick, and Patrick responded like any young man would respond to the GOAT.

"We look forward to the opportunity to play, I know Pat does with Tom and I'm sure likewise Tom does with Pat. It should be a heck of a football game."

Mahomes completed 29 of 38 passes for 325 yards and three touchdowns against the Bills and joined Kurt Warner, Brady and Russell Wilson as the only quarterbacks to reach the Super Bowl twice in their first four NFL seasons.

If the Chiefs are victorious, Mahomes will join Brady as the only QBs to win it twice in that span.

Asked what such achievements say about Mahomes, Reid replied: "You guys have seen him grow right in front of you.

"You're seeing the steps he's taking. I sit there, and I'm an old guy who's seen a lot of pretty good quarterbacks, and I sit there and think this guy seems to amaze me a little bit more every game.

"I'm proud of the way he handles it most of all. You guys aren't writing stories about this guy has a big head or this and that.

"He's not showing people up. No, he's about the team, he's all in, he works his tail off, he does it the right way, which is important for the longevity of his career and for the success of the Kansas City Chiefs and now for the Super Bowl."

Mahomes entered the game on the back of suffering a concussion in the Divisional Round win over the Cleveland Browns, and with question marks over a nasty-looking toe injury.

Reid added: "Listen, he came out and he practiced and did a great job all week.

"It was a limited basis early with the protocol he had to deal with, he kept positive with it, stayed positive with every part whether that was with the toe or head.

"I thought he and the trainers had a great plan for his toe. It was an amazing looking thing after the last game and how black and blue it was."

Reid said the magnitude of reaching back-to-back Super Bowls had not quite sunk in yet.

"I will [reflect] when I get about two seconds to sit down, I'm gonna sit there and I'm gonna go 'Dog darn, how about that?'" Reid added.

"But we got some work we gotta get done. We understand that, the guys understand that."

Kansas City Chiefs star Patrick Mahomes is excited about the opportunity to face Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Super Bowl LV.

The Chiefs and Buccaneers secured their places in the NFL showpiece with wins over the Buffalo Bills and Green Bay Packers respectively on Sunday.

The battle between quarterbacks Mahomes and Brady is set to be must-watch at Raymond James Stadium on February 7.

And Mahomes, who led the Chiefs to the title last year in an MVP performance, is excited to face Brady with the 43-year-old playing his 10th Super Bowl.

"The Super Bowl is the Super Bowl," Mahomes told a news conference.

"Being able to go up against one of the greatest, if not the greatest, quarterback of all-time in his 150th Super Bowl, I mean, it's going to be a great experience for me.

"To go out there and have a chance to repeat and get to do it against the best, I mean it's something special and I'm excited for the opportunity."

Mahomes went into the AFC Championship Game on the back of a concussion suffered last week and with question marks over a suspected toe injury.

But he completed 29 of 38 passes for 325 yards and three touchdowns in the 38-24 win over the Bills.

Mahomes joined Kurt Warner, Brady and Russell Wilson as the only quarterbacks to reach the Super Bowl twice in their first four NFL seasons.

If the Chiefs are victorious, Mahomes will join Brady as the only QBs to win it twice in that span.

Despite the concerns over his health, Mahomes insisted he felt fit and ready to go ahead of facing the Bills.

"I felt good from the warmups on. We did a good job as far as rehabbing and getting myself ready to go," he said.

"I felt like I was myself out there and we were able to go out there and score points and find a way to win against a really good football team."

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