The Kansas City Chiefs Could Use Their Faux Home Team Advantage in the Super Bowl

Even though they're not playing the Super Bowl at their home stadium, the Kansas City Chiefs could technically have a "home team" advantage against the 49ers.

Alex West - Author

Feb. 8 2024, Published 2:16 p.m. ET

Travis Kelce #87 of the Kansas City Chiefs
Source: Getty Images

Longtime football fans and brand-new-to-the-sport Swifties alike are probably realizing that the Super Bowl has some interesting circumstances, traditions, and rules. Certain aspects of the event can be logistically difficult, like figuring out which team gets to be the home team.

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Since the Super Bowl usually takes place at a stadium that's not actually the home to either competing team, the NFL needs to figure out how to decide which team wears which color. This year, for the LVIII Super Bowl, the Kansas City Chiefs are playing as the home team — but why?

 Patrick Mahomes #15 of the Kansas City Chiefs
Source: Getty Images
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Why are the Kansas City Chiefs the home team at the Super Bowl?

Typically, the Chiefs play at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, and the San Francisco 49ers play at Levi's Stadium in San Francisco. For the Super Bowl, the teams will got head-to-head at the indoor Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.

The Chiefs will take the home team role because the Super Bowl is a matchup between the American Football Conference and the National Football Conference. These two divisions come head-to-head with the top team from each and, to keep things fair, the home team swaps between the two conferences.

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In even number years, such as 2024, the AFC takes the home team role whereas in odd numbers it's the NFC. Does this actually give either of them sort of advantage, though?

Christian McCaffrey #23 of the San Francisco 49ers
Source: Getty Images
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Not really. One of the biggest differences between home teams and away teams is just the color jersey they're wearing. Each team has two sets of their jersey in different colors. One set is white while the other jersey color is whatever their teams colors are.

In other sports, the colors the teams wear at home and away games are set and constant with home teams typically wearing white. In the NFL, the home team can choose to wear white, but they're also free to choose their colors, too. The opponents have to conform to whichever choice the home team makes.

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While it's subtle, the color choice can definitely be used strategically to throw off the opponents. Most of the time, the home team will choose to wear their team-spirited colors. However, weather can be a factor.

It's basic science. Wearing dark colors in heat makes it easier for an athlete, or anyone, to get overheated which would then affect their performance. So, a home team can strategically choose to wear white to remain cooler.

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Deebo Samuel #19 of the San Francisco 49ers
Source: Getty Images

The Washington Commanders and the Dallas Cowboys actually use a very specific strategy. Both teams typically wear their whites during home games. So, when they travel, since the other team choose to wear their colors, they're able to wear their whites while travelling. This keeps their jerseys pretty consistent throughout the season.

Sometimes, teams will purposefully try to throw them off by wearing their own whites and thus making the Cowboys play with a color that they are less familiar with. Whether or not this tactic is that useful is certainly up for debate.

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