The Kansas City Chiefs beat the San Francisco 49rs with a score of 31-20 after entering the fourth quarter down by double digits in Super Bowl LIV.
In a memorable comeback effort, Kansas City’s star quarterback Patrick Mahomes led the Chiefs back from a 20-10 deficit with just over seven minutes left to play. The Chief’s chances of winning dropped as low as 3.9 percent prior to the team’s stunning come-from-behind win, according to ESPN.
In a game featuring two high-powered offenses that both ranked in the top ten in the NFL in Average Yards Per Game according to NFL.com, the score was surprisingly low. This was partially due to Mahomes’ lackluster first half performance for Kansas City, but by the time the game was complete Mahomes had notched 286 passing yards for two touchdowns with 26 completions on 42 attempts, according to ESPN.
The Chiefs comeback was the story of the game, especially following comeback victories from deficits of 24-0 and 17-7 in their previous two postseason games.
"We have heart," Mahomes said in an interview with ESPN following the game. "We never give up and those guys around us, the leaders on the team , have that mindset that we never give up."
Mahomes was awarded Super Bowl MVP after leading the team in the comeback win, adding to his list of accolades that includes NFL MVP, two Pro-Bowl appearances and, of course, now a Super Bowl ring.
San Francisco was a formidable opponent for the entire game, but particularly the first three quarters of play. Touchdowns by Kyle Juszczyk in the first half and Raheem Mosert in the third quarter led the 49rs to a 20-10 lead entering the 4th.
The lead was not enough, as quarterback Jimmy Garrapollo showed flashes of prowess in the pocket, but ultimately finished with just one touchdown pass and two interceptions accompanied by a 40.6 QBR according to ESPN.
49rs head coach Kyle Shanahan, a coach already well-known for his offensive collapse in Super Bowl LI while he was offensive coordinator of the Atlanta Falcons, had little to say about the teams shortcomings in the final quarter of play.
“We'll lick our wounds and we'll get over this," Shanahan said after the game.
A blown lead is not always so easy to overcome for some organizations, but time will tell if Shanahan’s squad is able to rebound following their 2020 Super Bowl loss.
Micah Johnston ‘22 is a journalism and media studies double major who has written for The Cluster since his freshman year at Mercer. He has written on and reported for Georgia Public Broadcasting, The Macon Telegraph and The Macon Newsroom on a variety of topics. He received the Center for Collaborative Journalism’s Junior Honors Award for the 2020-2021 academic year. Micah’s other interests include obsessively following Braves and Mariners baseball, constantly listening to all kinds of music and probably eating junk food.