Let's take another look at one the best Super Bowls ever

The Super was played on February 11, but it will go down as one of the greatest games in football history. Here is a recap.

Quarterback Patrick Mahomes just needed one shot at winning the Super Bowl, and the San Francisco 49ers gave it to him. Mahomes drove the Kansas City Chiefs 75 yards in 13 plays, connecting on a 3-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Mecole Hardman to defeat the 49ers, 25-22 in overtime. With the victory, the Chiefs became the first team in 19 years to repeat as Super Bowl champions.

The loss didn't have to happen. The 49ers committed two costly turnovers in the game. The Niners took the opening kickoff and drove 46 yards in four plays, moving into field goal range. On first-and-ten from the 29-yard line, running back Christian McCaffrey fumbled and Chiefs defensive end George Karlaftis recovered at the 27-yard line, ending the promising opening drive.

The other costly turnover came on a fumbled punt late in the third quarter. With the 49ers leading 10-6, a punt by Chiefs punter Thommy Thompson inadvertently hit the foot of 49ers defensive back Darrell Luter Jr. and was recovered by Jaylen Watson of the Chiefs at the 49ers 16-yard line. On the next play from scrimmage, Mahomes connected with wide receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling on a 16-yard touchdown pass, giving the Chiefs their first offensive touchdown of the day and a 13-10 lead.

The first turnover cost the 49ers early momentum and a possible 7-0 lead. The second turnover gave the Chiefs struggling offense, coming off another three-and-out, a much-needed offensive touchdown. The Chiefs offense had not scored a touchdown since the second quarter of the AFC Championship game against the Ravens.

A missed extra point by the 49ers after a fourth quarter touchdown kept the score tied at 16-16. The two turnovers and the missed extra point kept the Chiefs in the game, and they were able to tie the game at 19-19 and get the game into overtime on a 29-yard field goal by Harrison Butker with three seconds remaining in the fourth quarter.

The 49ers won the coin toss in overtime and decided to receive. The rules of playoff overtime football in the NFL dictate that each team gets an offensive possession in overtime. Quarterback Brock Purdy drove the 49ers to the Chiefs nine-yard line where the drive stalled and the Niners settles for a 27-yard field goal from kicker Jake Moody to take a 22-19 lead in overtime. But Mahomes had his chance to win the game.

On a 4th-and-1 from their own 34-yard line, Mahomes scrambled eight yards for a huge first down to keep the drive going. On a 3rd-and-one from the 49ers 32-yard line, Mahomes scrambled 19 yards for another first down to the 13. A seven-yard completion to All-Pro tight end Travis Kelce got the Chiefs a first down at the 49ers 3-yard line. On the very next play, Mahomes found Hardman wide open for a three-yard touchdown pass and a Chiefs 25-22 victory. Once again, the Chiefs were champions.

After the game, the first person to speak to Mahomes on the field was CBS reporter Tracy Wolfson. She asked Mahomes the question of the moment after beating the 49ers: "Is it a dynasty now?" Mahomes gave her an honest answer: "It's the start of one. We're not done."

It definitely looks like a dynasty. The Chiefs have won back-to-back Super Bowl championships, and three in the past five years. They have won eight consecutive AFC West Division Championships. They have appeared in six consecutive AFC Conference Championship games.

What has been impressive with this Chiefs dynasty is they were able to rebuild the defense, the offensive line, and the running game in 2021 & 2022 through the draft. The 2021 draft produced starters in middle linebacker Nick Bolton, center Creed Humphrey, and right guard Trey Smith. The 2022 draft added starters in cornerback Trent McDuffie, defensive end Karlaftis, free safety Bryan Cook, and running back Isiah Pacheco.

Chiefs head coach Andy Reid has now appeared in 11 conference championship games as a head coach, six with the Chiefs and five with the Philadelphia Eagles. Only Bill Belichick has appeared in more. He has appeared in 13 conference championship games as the head coach of the New England Patriots.

The Chiefs general manager is Brett Veach, who built the roster and pushed for the selection of Mahomes in the first round. Mahomes is the superstar quarterback, but it also takes a great GM, a great head coach, and good ownership. The Chiefs have a good organization and roster. It is not just the Mahomes and Kelce show.

The 49ers lost to Chiefs in the Super Bowl for the second time in five years and three days after the Super Bowl, fired defensive coordinator Steve Wilks, who apparently is taking the blame for the late game heroics of Mahomes. While Wilks did employ some questionable defensive schemes late, the 49ers lost the game earlier by not finishing drives and by turning the ball over. They gave Mahomes the opportunity to win the game and his third Super Bowl MVP award.

 

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