When the Eagles and Patriots square off on Sunday in Super Bowl LII, it’ll have a familiar feel to it. That’s because both teams faced each other in Super Bowl XXXIX thirteen years ago, a game that the Patriots won 20-17.

Back then, the Eagles were led by the combination of quarterback Donovan McNabb and coach Andy Reid. Thirteen years later, it’ll be Nick Foles (who Reid drafted) under center and Doug Pederson (who McNabb replaced in Philly) coaching the Eagles on the sidelines.

The Eagles opened up as underdogs to the Patriots, even though they were the No. 1 seed in the NFC and just took care of the Falcons and hammered the Vikings. Specifically, the Eagles opened as 5-point underdogs, and the number would have been larger had Philly not blasted Minnesota 38-7 in the NFC Championship game

It looked briefly as if the Jaguars would upset the Patriots, who were trailing by 10 points in the fourth quarter. The Patriots would do what the Patriots do and rally for a 24-20 victory. Had the Patriots had an easier time beating the Jaguars, the line would be even bigger.

These teams present a fascinating matchup even though they are very different. Let’s get to the details and biggest storylines from Super Bowl LII. 

Find out what SportsLine’s advanced computer model has to say about the final score of Super Bowl LII.  

How to Watch Super Bowl LII

Date: Feb. 4, 2018
Time: 6:30 p.m. ET
Where: U.S. Bank Stadium, Minneapolis, MN
TV: NBC (check local channels)
Stream: fuboTV (Try for free)
Announcers: Al Michaels (play-by-play), Cris Collinsworth (analyst), Michele Tafoya (sideline reporter)

Who will sing the national anthem?

Pop singer Pink will be in charge of either wrecking or helping your over/under anthem prop bets.

Who will perform at halftime?

Justin Timberlake will handle Super Bowl LII halftime duties! The former NSYNC star, who has morphed into one of the most diverse and dynamic performers in music and television today, is gonna blow the roof (metaphorically) off the sucker. Timberlake hasn’t been on the stage for the Super Bowl since his famous wardrobe malfunction with Janet Jackson after the 2003 season. More than a decade later, he returns. Expect songs you know, songs you don’t and maybe a wild cover too.

Will the Patriots get Gronk back?

Rob Gronkowski suffered a concussion during the AFC Championship Game and left before halftime, never to return. It is impossible to know for certain if Gronk will be cleared in time for the Super Bowl, but if you’re a betting man or woman, you should wager heavily on Gronk being on the field. He has two weeks to clear the concussion protocol and this is the Patriots final game of the season. New England isn’t in charge of his decision — independent doctors are, but it would be a stunner if he wasn’t on the field for this one.

Will Tom Brady’s hand be OK?

Yeah it will. Brady wasn’t performing open-heart surgery guys. Just ask Bill Belichick. The Pats quarterback got roughly 10 stitches — although there’s now a rumor it was 12, which would be very on brand of TB12 — in his hand after a collision with Rex Burkhead in practice. Brady has two weeks to heal his hand and get ready, and let’s not pretend like it affected him during the win over the Jaguars. The Patriots defense early on against Jacksonville, not Brady, was the problem. Brady was dynamic down the stretch and he will be fine. 

Was Nick Foles the regular season MVP?

I see you just tuned into the NFL on Sunday. No he was not! In fact, he wasn’t even the Eagles starting quarterback to begin the season. That was Carson Wentz, who probably would have won MVP, except he tore his ACL late in the year (Brady is going to win now). Foles nearly quit football a few years ago, but came back to Philly (where he was drafted), backed up Wentz and stepped in late in the season. He just happened to have the game of his life on Sunday against the Vikings defense, throwing for 352 yards and three touchdowns. That performance against a dangerous defense like the Vikings should give Eagles fans hope against the Patriots, although two weeks for Bill Belichick to prepare is a problem for anyone. Credit Doug Pederson for doing a heck of a job with the offense and the play-calling after losing his starting MVP-caliber quarterback and his starting star left tackle (Jason Peters). The Eagles offense is explosive and can put the hammer down when it gets a lead thanks to Jay Ajayi and LeGarrette Blount.


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