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Kansas City, Philadelphia will line up in Super Bowl LVII in Glendale

State Farm Stadium is preparing for Super Bowl LVII, which will feature a matchup between the Kansas City Chiefs and the Philadelphia Eagles. The popular matchup is expected to drive up ticket prices. (Photo by Dylan Nichols/Cronkite News)

PHOENIX – The Kansas City Chiefs and the Philadelphia Eagles officially have a date with destiny.

Each team stamped its ticket to Super Bowl LVII on Sunday as the Eagles beat an injured San Francisco 49ers team 31-7, and Kansas City won in the final seconds against the Cincinnati Bengals, 23-20, thanks to a needless rough penalty that put the Chiefs in game-winning field goal position.

After 26 weeks of training camp, preseason, regular season and playoff games, the stage is finally set for the fourth Arizona Super Bowl in NFL history, with State Farm Stadium in Glendale hosting the first meeting of the No. . 2017.

The high-profile matchup is creating exorbitant ticket prices. The average cost for the cheapest Monday afternoon single ticket between Ticketmaster, SeatGeek, and StubHub was $5,152.

Gamblers also pay close attention to this game. Most sportsbooks view the Eagles as slight favorites, suggesting the likelihood of a close contest. And lots of bets.

“You have two ardent fans in (Kansas City) and (Philadelphia). In the case of Kansas City, their home market of Missouri does not have legal sports betting, so this is the next best thing,” said Christopher Boan of BetArizona.com.

This is also a Super Bowl of firsts.

Several things that have never happened in Super Bowl history will happen on Sunday, February 12 in Glendale.

First, in the first 56 Super Bowls, there have never been two brothers on opposite sides of the field as players. In 2013, John and Jim Harbaugh practiced against each other in Super Bowl XLVII between John’s Ravens and Jim’s 49ers, with the older brother’s Baltimore securing the championship. Most recently, in 2019, Jason and Devin McCourty lined up in the same defensive backfield for the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LIII against the Los Angeles Rams.

Chiefs star tight end Travis Kelce and Eagles All-Pro center Jason Kelce will break the Super Bowl brother barrier for the first time. They combined to play in 320 career games winning two Super Bowl rings and receiving 14 Pro Bowl selections and winning All-Pro honors nine times with 27 playoff games.

Now, they are sure to add another ring to the Kelce family collection. The only question is which brother’s name will be engraved on it after the confetti falls.

Officially done being a Chiefs fan this season!!

— Jason Kelce (@JasonKelce) January 30, 2023

Super Bowl LVII also marks the first time the title game will feature two black starting quarterbacks, possibly during Black History Month. Several black quarterbacks have won Super Bowls in the past, including Washington’s Doug Williams, Seattle’s Russell Wilson, and most recently, Chiefs star Patrick Mahomes. In some classic Super Bowl games, black quarterbacks including Tennessee’s Steve McNair, Philadelphia’s Donovan McNabb, and San Francisco’s Colin Kaepernick have finished just short of a championship.

It’s no secret that Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts and the Chiefs’ Mahomes have staged seasons of Most Valuable Player caliber, with both leading their respective teams to the No. 1 seed in their conferences and, now, the Super Bowl.

In an age where the quarterback position requires a different level of athletic ability than ever before, there may not be a more perfect match in dynamic playmaking and clutch performance.

Look for some firsts beyond the playing field.

Audiences at State Farm Stadium for Super Bowl LVII will be the first to experience an on-site bookmaker for the game. The BetMGM Sportsbook opened directly on North 95th Avenue in September and was the first sports betting facility to open in an NFL stadium.

With two passionate groups of fans coming from different parts of the country for the biggest sporting event of the year, look for as much action in the betting windows as there is on the stadium turf.

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This past February alone, Arizona residents placed just under $500 million in bets on sporting events, the Arizona Department of Gaming reported.

“We are very likely to see higher levels of betting this February as the sector continues to grow,” said Max Hartgraves, public information manager for the ADG.

Even with on-site sports betting, “retail betting is less than 5% of the entire market. The vast majority of bets are placed in the online format,” Hartgraves said.

“No one’s ever done this before, so we’ll learn a lot after Sunday afternoon,” Boan said.

Fans will be able to place their bets on the Eagles (-2) or Chiefs (+130) to win, or they can spice it up by betting on Travis Kelce (+650) or Miles Sanders (+800) to score the first touchdown of the game .

Of course, it’s also a safe bet that those odds will change before kickoff.

After injury reports come out over the next couple of weeks, which Boan described as taking “an eternity in sports betting,” or any stories that come out about players or coaches participating in the game, the numbers can move quickly.

“As the news line moves, the betting line moves too,” Boan said. “The spread isn’t necessarily where (sports betting) thinks the game is going to end, it’s where they think they’re going to get the most people to bet so they have the best shot at making money,”

If a fan is lucky enough to bank a $6,000 bet at the game, they may be able to recoup the money they spent on their single Super Bowl ticket. Even at $5,100 for the cheapest tickets, prices are below Los Angeles’ average low of $5,823. However, club seats and other better seating options could sell for more than $40,000.

It goes without saying that fans are putting a lot of money into it regardless of the outcome.

However, it’s not just the fans who invest a lot of time, money and effort into the big game. Nicki Ewell, Senior Director of Events for the Super Bowl, said planning for an event of this size can take years to coordinate.

From the Super Bowl Experience presented by Lowe’s, which is an interactive soccer theme park for fans throughout the week featuring games, player appearances and more, to meeting the FBI and Homeland Security to keep everyone safe at many events, it’s the staff’s job to get everything done in time for the biggest Sunday of the year.

“It takes hundreds and hundreds of people, a huge village of people, to get together — from vendors to manufacturing partners to local labor — all here,” Ewell said. “It’s working, putting the trust structures together.”

They’re tasked with converting “people into NFL fans,” Ewell said, spanning all 32 teams across the league. The celebration invites the next generation of fans to join in, letting kids 12 and under join the festivities for free all week long.

Gregory Trent Jr., a lifelong Kansas City Chiefs fan, intends to be there with his family.

Trent Jr. was watching the Chiefs-Bengals game at Pub Rock, a favorite bar of local Chiefs followers in Scottsdale, where he grabbed a reporter’s microphone and yelled, “Third generation Chiefs fan! My parents are from Kansas City! My grandmother is from Kansas City! And my daughter will be a Chiefs fan for generations too!

However, not all fans are as passionate as Trent Jr. Casual fans are what the NFL, Ewel and his staff are trying to reach.

“We really want to showcase this event as the crown jewel of our calendar and really give something back to the fans,” Ewell said.

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