It’s been 19 years since a team won back-to-back Super Bowls. The Kansas City Chiefs have ended that drought, beating the San Francisco 49ers 25-22 in overtime of Super Bowl 58. Throughout the night, I was mindlessly tweeting through it. Scrolling my feed, I was pretty surprised to see a high number of people tweeting about how awful the game was. I don’t see it, man. I was on the edge of my seat from the kickoff.
The game had everything. Was it the most scintillating Super Bowl? No. But, it was a heavyweight title fight between two prize fighters. It had the tension of the early rounds of a big bout, with the teams feeling each other out. You could sense a bit of nerves as they circled each other in the ring. But once all of that was out of the weigh, we settled into masterful coaching performances from Andy Reid, Steve Spagnuolo, Kyle Shanahan, and Steve Wilks. Not to mention, there were just so many special players taking the field for both teams. Each guy had some fun stuff drawn up for his counterpart, and the players executed pretty well to boot.
Wilks did a good job of having his guys securing the edges and keeping Patrick Mahomes from scrambling outside the pocket making plays on the run with his eyes down field. Shanahan knew exactly where to attack the Chiefs defense to wear them down throughout the game. Playoff Spags did a good job of turning up the pressure in the 2nd half. He had a brilliant call in not showing blitz and then blitzing in the red zone to keep 49ers from scoring. Reid hit ’em with the corn dog in overtime to win the game.
But, this wasn’t just a good Xs and Ox game. There was some high drama to go with it. Travis Kelce bumped Reid on the sideline for taking him out of the game at one point. I hope Reid gave Kelce a bare ass spanking in the locker room at halftime for that, but that’s neither here nor there. Dre Greenlaw hurt himself running onto the field. It was crazy. Rashee Rice was wide open on the 3rd down play that Mahomes threw to Kelce, who was covered up by Fred Warner. Had Mahomes seen Rice, the game never would’ve gone into overtime.
Christian McCaffrey and Isaiah Pacheco both fumbled in this game early on. Guys that aren’t household names were showing up in big ways. Leo Chenal and George Karlaftis teamed up to cause and recover McCaffrey’s fumble respectively. I can’t help but wonder how that early play might’ve changed the trajectory of the game. Doesn’t it feel like there’s a timeline where the 49ers score a touchdown on that drive and end up running away with the game? They were rolling early on. Jauan Jennings looked like a hero for the 49ers, throwing a touchdown and then later catching one. Nick Foles is the only other player in NFL history to do that in the Super Bowl.
You had a fun little kicker’s duel going. Jake Moody set the record for the longest field goal made in Super Bowl history only for Harrison Butker to follow it up with an even longer field goal and yet another new Super Bowl record. Special teams also showed up in a big way when a punt bounced off of Darrell Luter Jr.’s foot. When Ray-Ray McCloud was unable to corral it, the Chiefs recovered it with a short field to go. There was even a blocked extra point in this game! If that doesn’t happen, there might not be an overtime, and the 49ers might’ve been hoisting the Lombardi Trophy!
In the end, it was the classic Mahomes magic that took over on the final drive. He converted a 4th & 1 with his legs in overtime and eventually hit Mecole Hardman for the game-winning touchdown. The match-ups in this game were full on football porn – Kelce vs. Fred Warner…Trent McDuffie vs. Deebo Samuel…L’Jarius Sneed vs Brandon Aiyuk….Chris Jones forcing Brock Purdy to overthrow Samuel on what would’ve been a clean touchdown. These really were the two best teams in the NFL with studs going up against studs across the field. Sneed and Trent Williams had a couple of dumb penalties, but by and large, the refs let ’em play too. It felt like a relatively clean game to me.
Every decision was magnified, and every single play counted. To me, that’s what made this such a fascinating game. All things equal, it came down to who made the better decisions. Reid and Spags deserve that distinction. It’s easy to criticize Shanahan. Should he have deferred in OT? Should he have gone for it on 4th down in OT instead of kicking the field goal? We can certainly second guess those decisions in hindsight, but you still have to appreciate just how hard it is to make those calls in real time in the biggest game of your life. I don’t necessarily think Shanahan was wrong. I get his reasoning. He was playing the long game, thinking about that third overtime possession, as he explained in a press conference after the game. The expectation is that his 49ers would go down and score a touchdown on that opening drive. If they did, they’d just have to keep the Chiefs from scoring a touchdown to win the game. If they could only muster a field goal, so be it. They’d just have to hold the Chiefs to a field goal. If both teams scored though, he wanted the ball on that third possession in a “next score wins” situation. It makes logical sense! The problem for Shanahan was that Mahomes turned it on when they had him backed up several times on that final drive. It still comes down to the guys on the field, and you can say that the results would say Shanahan was wrong…but the game, to me, came down to that chess match of decisions between coaching staffs. Reid and Spags won it.
Throw in a good halftime show, and commercials that were pretty good for the most part, and it was everything I want my Super Bowl Sunday to be. It marks three Super Bowls in five years for the Chiefs in a league that is designed to keep everyone in the middle of the pack. You can be sour about “seeing the same old shit,” but I choose to appreciate the greatness of this Chiefs run.
I’m exhausted just from watching Super Bowl 58. That was a slugfest. Let’s try and get some sleep now.
Stoney Keeley is the Editor in Chief of The SoBros Network, and a Dogs Playing Poker on velvet connoisseur. He is a strong supporter of Team GSD, #BeBetter, and ‘Minds right, asses tight.’ “Big Natural” covers the Tennessee Titans, Nashville, Yankee Candle, and a whole wealth of nonsense. Follow on Twitter @StoneyKeeley.
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