This offseason, John Lynch and Kyle Shanahan made it an emphasis to keep as much of the San Francisco 49ers NFC Championship roster intact as financially feasible. And why wouldn't they? Following a stunning single-season turnaround, San Francisco went from the bottom to the top of the division, finishing the 2019 season with a 13–3 record.
San Francisco's offense led the league in scoring (479 points) and rushing touchdowns (23), while ranking second in rushing yards per game (144), third in point differential (+169), fourth in total offense (381.1) and fifth in yards per play (6.0).
Meanwhile, the 49ers boasted the top ranked-passing defense (169.2) while ranking second in total defense (281.8), fourth in sacks (48) and sixth in forced turnovers (27) en route to their first NFC Championship since 2013.
While re-signing several key pieces to their 2019 success, San Francisco has proven to already have a championship-caliber roster with very few holes to fill in the offseason. Kansas City's star tight end and Super Bowl opponent, Travis Kelce, agrees and believes that the 49ers, like the Chiefs, have the most equipped rosters to make a return to the title game.
Kelce was a guest on ESPN's First Take on Thursday and discussed several topics including his confidence in the Chiefs return to the big game and his outlook on a potential rematch between the reigning AFC and NFC Champs.
"Obviously, we haven't seen the draft, we haven't seen a full offseason, a free agency, so you don't know who's going to end up where," Kelce said. "But I honestly think it'll be in a rematch of Super Bowl LIV. I think the San Francisco 49ers are one heck of a team. They're very, very well coached. Very disciplined in who they are. And obviously they're very talented in who they are."
Similar to the 49ers, the Chiefs managed to retain a number of key players from their Super Bowl season, including defensive tackle Chris Jones, wide receiver Sammy Watkins and cornerback Bashaud Breeland among other names. While the Chiefs were faced with financial limitations in chasing big additions in free agency, they're hopeful they can make a return to the championship matchup with the players who originally took them there, and the 49ers are certainly eager to do the same.