PHOENIX — The top seeds from both the NFC and AFC will face each other in this year’s Super Bowl when the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs play for the Lombardi Trophy on Sunday at 4:30 p.m. MST at State Farm Stadium in Glendale, Arizona.

Here’s just a few of the storylines from what is expected to be a competitive matchup:

There’s some history in this year’s Super Bowl

History will be made on Sunday when the Eagles and Chiefs play each other.

Kansas City Chiefs coach Andy Reid will become only the fifth head coach to face his former team in the Super Bowl — Reid coached the Eagles from 1999 to 2012 and led them to the Super Bowl once, in the 2004 season. 

“I had 14 great years there, I loved every minute of it. It’s a great organization, and I am still close with the people there,” Reid, who played offensive line at BYU and was a graduate assistant for a year there, said earlier this week. “It’s great to see the kids we drafted that are now veteran players, All-Pro players on that team. I had a chance to give them a hug (Monday) night. Now we go our separate ways, and get ready to play.”  

Sunday’s game also features a pair of firsts: It will be the first time two brothers face each other in the Super Bowl — Kansas City tight end Travis Kelce and Philadelphia center Jason Kelce — and the first time two Black quarterbacks will start against each other in a Super Bowl.

The Chiefs’ Patrick Mahomes is making his third Super Bowl appearance, while the Eagles’ Jalen Hurts is making his Super Bowl debut.

“Think about all the rich history in this game, and to be a part of such a historic moment, it’s special,” Hurts said during Monday’s Super Bowl Opening Night event. “Seven African-American quarterbacks have played in this game (before), and now to go head-to-head, that’s uplifting to the next generation of quarterbacks.

“... The game has evolved, and it continues to evolve before our eyes. It’s a blessing.”

Coincidentally enough, it’s also the first time two Big 12 quarterbacks will face each other in the Super Bowl — Mahomes played at Texas Tech and Hurts at Oklahoma.

Philadelphia Eagles’ Britain Covey walks to practice at the NFL football team’s training facility, Friday, Feb. 3, 2023, in Philadelphia. The Eagles are scheduled to play the Kansas City Chiefs in Sunday’s Super Bowl on Feb. 12, 2023. | Matt Slocum, Associated Press

Another Super Bowl feel-good story for Utah

Last year, former Utah safety Eric Weddle came out of retirement by signing with the Los Angeles Rams for their playoff run and won a Super Bowl for the first time in his 13-year All-Pro career in the process. 

“Certain things had to happen for me to be in this moment, and to finish it off the way we did is just something you hear out of a book, or a story — a fiction fairy tale you only wish that your name would be a part of it,”  Weddle said after the Rams beat the Cincinnati Bengals 23-20 in last year’s Super Bowl.

“Lucky me, it’s about me, and I’m a world champ now.”

Now, there’s another feel-good Utes story this year in Britain Covey.

Covey went undrafted last April after a stellar career as a wide receiver and return specialist for Kyle Whittingham’s program, though he found his way onto the Eagles’ active roster this season as a return specialist, primarily at punt returner.

This all comes after Covey helped Utah win the Pac-12 championship for the first time and advance to the Rose Bowl in his final season with the Utes.

“What really sticks out with him — and I don’t think it’s going to be a secret to the NFL — is how quick he is. Everyone’s going to see how quick he is, and everyone’s going to remember the plays he made at Utah with his quickness,” Eagles coach Nick Sirianni said about Covey earlier this season.

Covey isn’t expected to have a significant impact on Sunday’s game — he has seven fair catches and no punt returns so far in this year’s playoffs — and he is officially listed as questionable with a hamstring injury that was first reported on Thursday.

With a win Sunday, though, the 5-foot-8, 173-pounder out of Provo (he prepped at Timpview High) would add a Super Bowl ring to his growing legacy.

Kansas City Chiefs wide receiver Marcus Kemp runs on the field in the first half of an NFL football game against the Baltimore Ravens, Sunday, Sept. 19, 2021, in Baltimore. Kemp, who played at Layton High, is back for his third Super Bowl with the Chiefs. | Julio Cortez, Associated Press

Other Utah ties in this year’s Super Bowl

In addition to Covey, there are five other Utah ties on the rosters for the Eagles and Chiefs — all are practice squad guys.

Former Layton High wide receiver Marcus Kemp, a six-year veteran who played collegiately at Hawaii, is at his third Super Bowl with Kansas City in the past four years. 

“I’m enjoying it, and it feels good to be back,” Kemp told the Deseret News Monday night during the Super Bowl’s Opening Night event.

He’s joined on the Chiefs practice squad by two former BYU players in their second year in the NFL, tight end Matt Bushman and safety Zayne Anderson (Stansbury High).

The Eagles have former Weber State and Stansbury High offensive tackle Sua Opeta and Hunter High tight end Noah Togiai on their practice squad. Opeta is in his fourth season in Philadelphia, while Togiai is on his second stint in Philly and third pro season overall.

“It’s crazy. I never imagined I would be here,” Togiai, who played collegiately at Oregon State, said during Opening Night. “It’s pretty surreal.”

There are also three Utah ties on the coaching staffs, in addition to Reid. 

Former Utah quarterback Brian Johnson is in his second season as Philadelphia’s quarterbacks coach. In Kansas City, BYU graduate Porter Ellett is the Chiefs’ offensive quality control coach and former Utah linebacker Alex Whittingham, the son of Utes head coach Kyle Whittingham, is the defensive quality control coach.

In this Feb. 1, 2015, file photo, New England Patriots cornerback Malcolm Butler (21) intercepts a pass intended for Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Ricardo Lockette during the 2015 Super Bowl game in Glendale, Ariz. | Kathy Willens, Associated Press

Arizona has been host to some crazy Super Bowl moments

Sunday’s matchup between the Chiefs and Eagles will be the fourth time Arizona has hosted a Super Bowl.

The last two times — both at State Farm Stadium — have been entertaining.

Eight years ago, New England rallied from a 24-14 deficit to beat the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 in Super Bowl 49, a game remembered for Malcolm Butler’s interception of a Russell Wilson pass at the goal line in the final minute of the game.

The question that surrounded the game afterward was why Seattle didn’t give the ball to star running back Marshawn Lynch when it had the ball at the 1-yard line with the chance to win the Super Bowl, and instead chose to pass the ball.

“Everybody did their job,” former Utah and Copper Hills High defensive tackle Sealver Siliga, who won a ring with the Patriots that year, said in the locker room after the game. “We lost sight of that for a little while. At the end of the game, everybody just did their job.”

Seven years before that, the New York Giants knocked off the Patriots 17-14 in Super Bowl 42 in what is seen as one of the biggest upsets in NFL history.

New England went into the Super Bowl undefeated that year, but the Giants won behind a strong defensive effort and some late-game heroics from quarterback Eli Manning and wide receiver David Tyree, whose “helmet catch” put the Giants in position to win on a Plaxico Burress touchdown catch in the final minute.

Kansas City Chiefs owners chairman Clark Hunter, foreground center, and his mother, Norma Hunt, celebrate with quarterback Patrick Mahomes, right, and others after the Super Bowl 54 game against the San Francisco 49ers in Miami Gardens, Fla., in this Feb. 2, 2020, file photo. The Kansas City Chiefs won 31-20. The Chiefs are scheduled to play the Philadelphia Eagles in Sunday’s Super Bowl on Feb. 12, 2023. | Mark Humphrey, Associated Press

Is there a dynasty brewing?

Kansas City is making a habit out of reaching the Super Bowl in recent years — the Chiefs won the Super Bowl three years ago to give Reid his first Super Bowl title as a head coach. The next year, Kansas City returned to the Super Bowl but was soundly beaten by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Even so, Kansas City is one of the most consistently successful franchises in the NFL right now. The Chiefs have played in five straight AFC championships and made the playoffs eight straight years.

If Kansas City wins Sunday, it’s fair to ask, is the Chiefs dynasty here?

Reid, who has 24 years of NFL head-coaching experience, dismissed the notion that Sunday’s matchup against his former team will have much bearing come game time. 

“I think it’s a great thing for the Eagles and the Chiefs to be in this position. Once you get through that, it’s the teams playing each other,” Reid said. “It doesn’t really matter the uniforms. Once a game gets going, it’s football — who’s got the better team, better players, better coaches, who gets a break here or there.”

The Eagles, meanwhile, are back in the Super Bowl for the first time in five years, when Philadelphia won its lone Super Bowl with a 41-33 victory over the New England Patriots back in the 2017 season.

Sirianni, who has Philadelphia back in the Super Bowl in just his second season as the franchise’s head coach, emphasized that just because it’s Super Bowl week doesn’t change the way his team is preparing to block out the outside noise and try to focus on what’s gotten his team to the season’s final Sunday.

“In the National Football League, there’s a lot of ups and downs in the season. If you allow yourself to be, you can get caught in the roller coaster of the season,” he said. “… You try not to let yourselves get wrapped up in the ups and downs of the season. You fight that all the time, you’re fighting to stay in a routine. You’re doing the same thing here, because there’s always going to be big games. 

“I know it’s the Super Bowl, but … it’s sticking to your process and going out and trying to accomplish the goal of winning the football game.”