Super Bowl LVIII (58) Recap

Super Bowl LVIII (58) Recap

AFC Kansas City Chiefs vs NFC San Francisco 49ers (-2) at 6:30pm Eastern on CBS. The game was played at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. 

These teams met 4 years ago in the Super Bowl. The 49ers led 20-10 with 10 minutes left in the game. Then the Chiefs exploded for 21 4th quarter points for a 31-20 win. It was the first Super Bowl win for the Chiefs in 50 years. It was the first Super Bowl win for Andy Reid, who finally got upgraded from Walrus Lite to full Walrus status. The Chiefs won it again last year. Patrick Mahomes was there for both wins. The Chiefs were in the Super Bowl for the 4th time in 5 years. With a 3rd win in 5 years, the Chiefs would officially be a dynasty.

The 49ers last won the Super Bowl nearly 30 years ago. A win would give them 6, tying them with New England and Pittsburgh for most overall Super Bowl wins. The 49ers were a feel good story led by Mr. Irrelevant Brock Purdy. In his rookie season, he took the 49ers to the NFC Title Game but then suffered an injury in a loss. In his sophomore season, he got the 49ers to the big game. Yet one storyline was 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan. 

Shanahan has blown 2 double digit fourth quarter leads in 2 different Super Bowls with 2 different teams.

He was the offensive coordinator for the 2016 Falcons, who led 28-3 and lost he was the head coach of the 2019 49ers, who led the Chiefs 20-10 with 10 minutes left in regulation and lost. The reasons are the same. You don’t close out games with West Coast Offense dinking and dunking.

Kyle Shanahan needed to figure out what Andy Reid finally figured out in 2019. When you have a lead in the fourth quarter, no matter how great your passing game, you RUN THE D@MN BALL. You run it again and again and again and again and again. If they stop it on one play, you run it again.

Peyton Manning was one of the greatest passers of all time. He finally won it all in 2006 because the Colts ran the ball. Shanahan’s father Mike Shanahan has 2 Super Bowl rings because he figured it out. John Elway was a quarterbackgor the shes, but he didn’t get a ring until Terrell Davis ran the ball at opposing defenses. With a fourth quarter lead, you must run the football. Kyle Shanahan should have 2 rings already. Yet Reid does because Reid figured it out. This game would see if Shanahan had.

The Chiefs won the coin toss and surprisingly made the decision to defer. Teams now like to double up at the end of the first half and the beginning of the second half, but with Mahomes, it makes sense to put him on the field first. Nevertheless, the 49ers got the ball first. After an opening touchback, The 49ers easily moved to a 1st and 10 at the Kansas City 29. Christian McCaffrey got the carry and fumbled he ball away. This game was for long stretches dominated by the defenses. The first quarter was scoreless. 

Late in the first quarter the 49ers moved from their own 17 to a 1st and 10 at the Kansas City 33. Then a run was blown up for a 4 yard loss to end the period. The second quarter began with Purdy throwing incomplete. Jake Moody came in for a 55 yard field goal try. At that moment, 54 yards was the longest field goal in Super Bowl history. Moody’s kick was good. He kicked himself into the NFL record books and the 49ers into a 3-0 lead with the first score of the game. After a touchback, a perfect bomb from Mahomes to Mecole Hardman went for 52 yards and set up 1st and goal at the 9. Yet on the next play Isaiah Pacheco fumbled and the 49ers recovered. 

Midway through the second quarter, the 49ers took over at their own 33. Purdy went to Deebo Samuel for 12 and McCaffrey for 6. McCaffrey then ran for 5 and Mitchell added 7. On the next play, defensive unnecessary roughness on Sneed gave the 49ers 15 more yards. Kyle Shanahan then went to his bag of tricks. Purdy fired a lateral to Jauan Jennings. Jennings then threw the halfback option pass to McCaffrey for a 21 yard touchdown. The game’s first touchdown had the 49ers up 10-0 with 4 1/2 minutes left in the half. For the 3rd time, Shanahan had a double digit lead in the Super Bowl. The question would be if he would play power football and run the ball late in the game or if he would keep trying to dink and dunk his way to a victory. 

After a touchback, the Chiefs moved a little bit and suffered a false start at the 2 minute warning. They faced 3rd and 9 at their own 40. Mahomes went to Juju Watson for 21. With 30 seconds left in the half, the Chiefs faced 3rd and 5 at the San Francisco 9. Mahomes looked forever but ended up getting taken down for a one yard loss. Harrison Butker hit a 28 yard field goal as the Chiefs only trailed 10-3 at the half. Since pop stars and TikTok stars who date or marry the players have nothing to do with football, their appearance at the game merits no further discussion. The halftime show happened, concluding all necessary discussion of Super Bowl events not directly related to football. Back to football.

After a third quarter touchback, the Chiefs were expected to make adjustments. Instead disaster struck immediately. On the first play from scrimmage, a simple pitchout to Pacheco was fumbled, resulting in a 12 yard loss. On 3rd and 12, Mahomes threw an ill-advised pass into double coverage that was intercepted by Brown. The 49ers had a short field at the Kansas City 44. One first down would mean long field goal range. All Kyle Shanahan had to do was run the ball and get back to a 2 score game. Instead he kept dinking and dunking. Purdy threw a pair of incompletions sandwiched around a false tart as the 49ers wasted the opportunity. A great punt pinned the Chiefs at their own 2 yard line. Both defenses dug in. 

The Chiefs got it back again at their own 14. They moved to a 4th and 6 at the San Francisco 39. Butker came in for a 57 yard field goal try. The second quarter started with Moody entering the record books. With 5 minutes left in the third quarter, Butker knocked Moody out of the top spot. Butker was good from 57. Both kickers had hit from at least 55 yards, another new NFL record. The Chiefs only trailed 10-6. A key play in the game happened when the Chiefs punted on 4th and 2 from their own 35. The 49ers fumbled the punt and the Chiefs recovered with gift field position at the San Francisco 16. One play and 4 seconds later, the Chiefs had their first lead of the game. Mahomes fired to Marques Valdes-Scantling for a 21 yard touchdown. 13 unanswered points had the Chiefs up 13-10 with 2 1/2 minutes left in the third quarter.

After a touchback, the 49ers soon faced 3rd and 5 at their own 30. Purdy went to Jennings for 17 and Deebo Samuel for 9. The fourth quarter began with the 49ers facing 1st and 10 at the Kansas City 42. Purdy went to Brandon Aiyuk for 20. On 3rd and 2 from the Kansas City 14, a run by McCaffrey lost a yard. A simple 32 yard field goal try by Moody would tie the game 13-13. Yet Kyle Shanahan made the insane decision to go for it. With the game on the line and most of the entire fourth quarter to play, kicking the field goal seemed like absolutely the right move. One week earlier, the 49ers won the NFC Title Game because Detroit kept gambling on 4th down tries in field goal range and losing. Yet Shanahan’s gamble paid off as Purdy found George Kittle in the flat for a tough 4 yard gain. Purdy then went to Jennings for a 10 yard touchdown. With 11 1/2 minutes left in regulation, the 12 play, 75 yard, 6 minute drive had the 49ers up 16-13. Yet a big special teams play happened when the Chiefs blocked Moody’s extra point try. 

After a touchback, the Chiefs moved 69 yards in 12 plays and 5 1/2 minutes. Yet on 2nd and goal at the 3, this time it was Walrus Andy Reid’s turn to get too pass happy rater than just run the ball. Mahomes threw incomplete and then was sacked. Butker hit from 24 to tie the game 16-16 with 5:46 to play. After a touchback, Purdy quickly went to Jennings for 23 yards. With 2:45 to play, the 49ers had 2nd and 5 at the Kansas City 35. The running game was working. More runs could take the clock all the way down and deny Mahomes another chance with the ball. Yet Kyle Shanahan will not close out games with runs. It is just not his way. Purdy completed a pass to Kittle for no gain as the clock clicked down to the 2 minute warning. On 3rd and 5, Purdy threw incomplete. Now Moody needed to make a 53 yard field goal try. Moody was good. He was back in the NFL record books by being the first kicker in a Super Bowl to hit two field goals of over 50 yards. More importantly, the 49ers led 19-16 with 1:53 left on the clock. Unfortunately for the 49ers, that was a lifetime for Mahomes.

After a touchback, Mahomes led the Chiefs to a 3rd and 2 at the San Francisco 43. Mahomes went to Jerock McKinnon for 7. With 16 seconds left, the Chiefs faced 3rd and 7 at the San Francisco 33. Mahomes found Travis Kelce near the sideline, and Kelce ripped off a 22 yard gain. The Chiefs had 1st and 10 at the San Francisco 11. Only 10 seconds remained in regulation. There was time for one, maybe two more plays. Mahomes fired incomplete, leaving 6 seconds. With even one more second, trying another play might be justified. Yet with 6 seconds and the entire game and season on the line, Walrus Andy Reid was not taking any chances. Butker needed only to hit from 29 yards out. A miss would put him in football infamy along with Ray Finkle, who was actually Lois Einhorn. Butker was good. The game was tied 19-19. For only the second time in NFL history, the Super Bowl was headed to overtime. The only other time was 2016, when the losing defensive coordinator was Kyle Shanahan. 

In the 2016 loss, Shanahan’s team never saw the ball. New England scored a touchdown and the game was over. Yet A couple of years ago the NFL overtime rules were changed again. Each team would get the ball at least once no matter what. The 49ers won the overtime coin toss and were not going to defer. After a touchback, The 49ers soon faced 3rd and 13 at their own 22. Purdy threw incomplete, but defensive holding gifted the 49ers a new set of downs. On 3rd and 2 from their own 35, Purdy hit Aiyuk for 11. From midfield, Purdy went to McCaffrey for 24. On 2nd and 2 from the Kansas City 18, a ru gained 4 yards but offensive holding wiped out the gain. The 49ers held the ball for 7 1/2 minutes in overtime, moving 68 yards in 12 plays. Yet on 2nd and 4 from the Kansas City 9, McCaffrey was stopped for no gain. On 3rd and 4, Purdy threw incomplete. Moody hit the 27 yard field goal. The 49ers led 22-19. Yet the Chiefs would get a chance with the ball. 4 years ago, the 49ers defense wilted when it mattered most against Mahomes. Now was their chance for redemption. 

After a touchback, the Chiefs faced 3rd and 1 from their own 34. Pacheco got the carry and got stopped cold for no gain. With 6 minutes left in overtime, the 49ers were one defensive stop from being World champions. The Chiefs needed one yard to keep alive their season. After calling a timeout, the Chiefs surprisingly were in shotgun formation. This seemed nuts. Even pass happy Walrus Andy Reid with a great quarterback in Mahomes was not going to risk a pass in this situation. Would he? Mahomes kept the ball and found a lane for an 8 yard gain. The Chiefs were still alive. On 3rd and 6 from their own 46, Mahomes went to Rice for 13. On 3rd and 1 from the San Francisco 32, Mahomes was again in the shotgun. Again, Mahomes kept the ball himself and gained 19 yards. Pacheco gained 3 and Mahomes hit Kelce for 7, but the clock was winding down. For some reason Reid was not calling a timeout.

Yet this time, Big Red Walrus Andy Reid understood what many fans did not. letting the clock tick down to triple zeroes would not end the game. The overtime was treated like the first half, the first of to quarters. If a team held the ball at the gun, the game would just go to a double overtime until the drive finished. There was no pressure to score immediately. With 10 seconds left in overtime, no matter what, the Chiefs would have 3 opportunities if they held on to the ball. They would not need them. On 1st and goal at the 3, Mahomes hit Hardman for the touchdown. With 3 seconds left in overtime, the Super Bowl was over. 

The 49ers had lost to the Chiefs for the second time in five years in heartbreaking fashion. For the third time, Kyle Shanahan oversaw his team blow a double digit lead int he Super Bowl. All 3 ties, his stubborn refusal to run the ball in running situations harmed his team. Yet it is not his fault that the opposing team has a bionic Buck Rodgers creature at quarterback. 

The Chiefs under Walrus Andy Reid and Mahomes had become the first team in nearly 2 decades to win back to back Super Bowls. Next year they will try to become the very first team in the Super Bowl era to win 3 straight Super Bowls. Mahomes was the Super Bowl MVP for the third time in his career. The Chiefs won their 3rd Super Bowl in 5 years. They were now officially a dynasty, making Andy Reid a most happy Walrus indeed. 25-22 Chiefs, OT

The 2023 NFL season is now in the books. 

3 months until the 2024 NFL Draft. 


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