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As many expected, Super Bowl 54 was nothing short of spectacular.
From fourth quarter comebacks, to career defining moments, Super Bowl 54 had it all. In this editorial, I will be taking a dive into the big game. Seeing where the coaches went right and where they went wrong. I will also look at players who stepped up to the plate when the lights shine brightest on them as well as players who cracked under pressure.
The first half showed both nerves and indecisiveness. Teams were not capitalizing on the others mistakes, and the game was a low scoring, quick game.
Many people were expecting the Chiefs to pass a lot as they have been all season, however this wasn’t the case. Instead, the Chiefs gave the ball to Damien Williams who had the game of his life, rushing for 104 yards and 1 touchdown to go along with it. Williams was a vital piece to the Chiefs moving offense, and really got the ball rolling for them on many drives.
On the other sideline, the 49ers were doing great. They were stopping the Chiefs near perfect offense, led by the dynamic rookie, Nick Bosa. The 49ers were also moving the chains well on offense. Jimmy Garapollo was slinging the ball around, getting his receivers in the game.
The 49ers play calling was also great up until the end of the first half. They knew what was working and stuck with it, not trying to change anything that was giving them success. However, at the very end of the half, Kyle Shanhan didn’t call a timeout when the Chiefs had the ball on 4th and 13, ultimately leading to Kansas City chewing the clock down. This would cost the Niners as when they got the ball back, they didn’t have enough time to score despite the huge 42 yard reception by George Kittle (which was then taken back ten yards due to pass interference).
Shanahan messed up big time in the first half, and that event was the starting point of the 49ers play calling demise.
Once San Francisco went up 20-10 with around 17 minutes left in the game, they were given a golden opportunity to take an even larger lead when Patrick Mahomes threw an interception, but that wasn’t the case. Rather, the Niners were forced to punt.
Then, the turning point of the game happened. The Chiefs had the ball with eight minutes left in the game and Nick Bosa got injured. The dominant 49ers defense that everybody had seen all game took a huge hit, and Kansas City capitalized.
Led by Patrick Mahomes, the Chiefs stormed back, with Travis Kelce and Damien Williams caught a touchdown each, making the most of the 49ers mistakes.
From the poor coaching to the execution from the players, San Francisco’s fourth quarter was one to forget. In the fourth, Jimmy Garapollo finished with a total QBR of 2, with his last pass being to Kednall Fuller of the Chiefs.
Poor usage of timeouts and questionable coaching led to the 49ers downfall and the rise of the Chiefs who put together the second biggest comeback in Super Bowl history. The first being the Patriots 25 point comeback after being down 28-3 to the Falcons, a team whose offensive coordinator was no other than, Kyle Shanahan.
The Super Bowl for the ages was capped off with Andy Reid hoisting the Lombardi Trophy for the first time in his storied career, a sight millions among millions of fans loved to see for the all time great coach.
Despite Shanahan losing his second Super Bowl (first as a head coach), I feel his time is coming too. He’s a proven winner in the the regular season, and turned the 49ers around from a bottom 3 team, to a top 2. Shanahan has really transformed the 49ers in his three seasons he’s been there, and I see a Super Bowl in the near future for him.
photo via http://www.nfl.com