When the Kansas City Chiefs traveled to Tampa in week twelve, they put on an offensive clinic in the first quarter and were able to come away with a 27-24 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Since then, the Bucs haven’t lost a game. On top of that, they got back one of their best defensive players.
Vita Vea missed that game in week twelve due to an injury suffered in week five. Now, the Kansas City Chiefs and Patrick Mahomes have a very big body to account for and have to plan for the impact he makes when he’s on the field.
On Vea’s first snap back from injury, he collapsed the interior of the Packers’ offensive line and set up a sack of Aaron Rodgers by Jason Pierre-Paul. With the Chiefs missing their two starting offensive tackles, Bucs fans are looking for more of that kind of production with Vea on the field.
I asked Mahomes what kind of impact Vea will make for the Bucs defense and what the Chiefs are looking to do to help neutralize his impact in Super Bowl LV;
“He’s a guy that you gotta know where he’s at on every single play. He’s obviously super disruptive in the run game but he’s just as good as a pass rusher. You don’t see guys like that playing that position that can rush the passer that much.
He’s a special talent. I have to know where he is every single play in order to not let him disrupt the entire game.”
Vea can certainly disrupt things and with a forecast calling for a 75% chance of rain, the speed of Kansas City’s offense could be somewhat neutralized. If this turns into a run-heavy game for each side, Vea’s presence will certainly play a big role in the Bucs’ ability to upset the Chiefs.