On Sunday evening, the Kansas City Chiefs rallied to defeat the San Francisco 49ers, 31-20, in Super Bowl LIV, capturing the franchise’s second Super Bowl and first in 50 years.
Like in every Kansas City Chiefs game, there were things to like and things to dislike, but I’m switching it up for this (potentially) final “10 Likes & Dislikes” article of the season. Instead of giving you my likes first, it’s the dislikes. Yet, I won’t be dwelling on the dislikes as much as I usually do.
What would be the point?
The Chiefs are Super Bowl champions for the first time since 1970!
We can start with (1) Patrick Mahomes‘ jitters in the early going when he missed some easy passes. There was his (2) first interception that went directly to 49ers linebacker Fred Warner. Easily the worst pass I’ve seen Mahomes throw. His (3) second interception of the game came as the team was driving and went off Tyreek Hill‘s hands, but let’s be honest. That was a bad pass.
The (4) Chiefs offensive line didn’t hold up very well against San Francisco’s vaunted front-four, as Mahomes was forced out of the pocket for much of the game as the 49ers finished with four sacks and nine quarterback hits. Particularly, Laurent Duvernay-Tardif had a tough game.
The (5) Chiefs run defense gave up 141 yards in the game, an average of 6.1 per carry, including 53 total yards to rookie wide receiver Deebo Samuel on just three attempts.
The 49ers only passed for 219 yards, but (6) the play-action pass sliced open the Chiefs secondary. 49ers (7) fullback Kyle Juszczyk had three receptions, one of which went for a touchdown and another that almost did, due to the inability of Chiefs linebackers to keep up with him.
Back to Mahomes: (8) what a scary moment when he got clocked by safety Jimmie Ward as he (Mahomes) started sliding too late after converting a first down. With the ball getting jarred loose, the first down was lost, but that would’ve been nothing compared to losing No. 15.
Overall, (9) the Chiefs timid playcalling in the first half was a real head-scratcher, and it got worse in the third quarter as the offense had two drives that both ended in interceptions as San Francisco’s lead grew to 10.
My biggest dislike came in favor of the Chiefs. I’m talking about the (10) offensive pass interference call against 49ers tight end George Kittle at the end of the first half. At the very least, the 49ers were in prime position send out Mr. Automatic, Robbie Gould, for an attempt to take a three-point lead into halftime while getting the ball first to start the second half. Instead, the refs made a ticky-tacky call.
Was it OPI? Sure, probably, yes. And yet–that type of thing happens on a majority of passing plays, and almost never gets called. Why call it on the game’s biggest stage?
But hey: at least it went for the Kansas City Chiefs.