Mazin Khalil, Staff Writer
It was a night to forget for the San Francisco 49ers, and their faithful as they lost Super Bowl LIV to the Kansas City Chiefs 31-20 after having a double digit lead going into the fourth quarter.
Previously having back-to-back losing seasons, the 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan emerged as one of the top coaches in the league this season leading his team to a (13-3) record.
The 49ers were having success to start the game, utilizing Deebo Samuel in multiple jet-sweep plays.
It seemed like San Francisco had a good rhythm throughout the entirety of the first half. Their Defense was containing Patrick Mahomes, and had made him seem human which is no easy task.
Going into the fourth quarter it looked like the 49ers had sealed their fate to win their sixth Super Bowl after Tarvarius Moore intercepted Patrick Mahomes on a crossing route intended for Tyreek Hill with 12 minutes left in the fourth quarter.
San Francisco had the second best rushing offense in the NFL but coach Shanahan was eager to prove that Jimmy Garoppolo could play in this league, especially after the conference championship game against the Green Bay Packers where he only completed 6 passes.
It was a flash back to Super Bowl LI when Kyle Shanahan was the offensive coordinator for the Atlanta Falcons and they blew the infamous 28-3 lead against the New England Patriots.
They were up 20-10 and Shanahan elected to throw the ball on multiple plays and waste minimal amounts of time on the clock. Many were flabbergasted that they didn’t choose to run the ball which had benefited them all season.
Instead they gave the ball back to Mahomes who was waiting to take over, as we have seen on multiple occasions throughout the 2019 NFL season.
Shanahan was not the only one to blame for the Super Bowl LIV lost on Sunday night. Jimmy Garoppolo had excessive chances to take his team over the hump, but didn’t succeed.
After a Travis Kelce touchdown which made the game 20-17, the 49ers still had a chance to burn the clock, and control the game.
On the first play of the drive they ran the ball for a 5-yard gain with Raheem Mostert then passed the next two plays eventually leading to a three-and-out. Giving the ball back to Mahomes again without wasting any real time on the clock.
The San Francisco 49ers defense had locked it down all season with ninth year veteran cornerback Richard Sherman leading the pass defense, and rookie Nick Bosa dominating the edge as he took home the honor of AP Defensive Rookie of the Year.
In one of the more critical moments in the game though Sherman got beat on a streak on what seemed to be man coverage by former fourth overall pick Sammy Watkins for a 38-yard gain. That set up Kansas City for a Damien Williams touchdown reception.
With all the mistakes made in the fourth quarter the San Francisco 49ers, somehow still found themselves in a position to win the game.
Down 24-20, Garropolo overthrew Emmanuel Sanders on a deep route down the middle which would have been a touchdown putting them up 27-24 with about a minute to go.
Nonetheless it was a successful year for the 40-year-old head coach who previously had a combined record of (10-22) before entering this season.
By Matthew Gomez, Sports Editor
The Kansas City Chiefs did what many expected when they won the Super Bowl Sunday night 31-20 against the San Francisco 49ers.
Going into Super Bowl Sunday, the Chiefs’ Andy Reid was the winningest coach in both the regular-season and playoffs to never win a Super Bowl. Early on in Sunday’s contest, Reid made a brash decision electing to go for it on fourth-and-1 on San Francisco’s 5-yard line. The Chiefs converted and eventually scored on quarterback Patrick Mahomes’ 1-yard run.
The ball was in anybody’s court, and it was Mahomes’ time to warrant his selection as the league’s MVP during the season prior. For a quarterback who has changed the expectations on how the position is played all eyes were on Mahomes and what he would do.
To most spectators’ surprise, myself included, it looked as if Mahomes was choking. In the third quarter Mahomes assisted the 49ers who scored 10 points due in large part to back-to-back interceptions. One was an aimless throw intended for Tyreek Hill, the other came off of Hill’s hands as Mahomes threw behind him.
Counting out Mahomes though would be nothing short of impractical. The kid had showcased that playing from behind meant nothing to him.
Continuing to target Hill, the Chiefs had their breakout play on a 44-yard reception on third-and-15 in the fourth quarter. With the momentum shifted, the Chiefs were able to land the fatal blows that would knock the 49ers out of the Super Bowl.
Jimmy Garoppolo has a knack for winning games that look impossible, but at the end of the day he is still just an average quarterback.