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Final score: Chiefs triumph 25-22 in overtime, win Super Bowl LVIII

Kansas City defeats San Francisco in overtime for second straight Super Bowl victory.

Super Bowl LVIII - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

On Sunday night, the Kansas City Chiefs officially became a dynasty by collecting their third NFL championship in five seasons with a 25-22 overtime victory over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LVII at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. It was the first time a team had collected back-to-back NFL championships since the 2004 season.


First quarter


The Chiefs won the opening coin toss. As usual, Kansas City deferred the decision to the second half, giving the 49ers possession to begin Super Bowl LVIII. The first drive started at the 25-yard line after a touchback.

San Francisco went right at the Chiefs’ defense, using strong runs and quick passes to get deep into Kansas City territory. From the 29-yard line, a handoff to running back Christian McCaffrey ended in a fumble, recovered by defensive end George Karlaftis. Linebacker Leo Chenal appeared to rip the ball loose, with the help of defensive tackle Mike Pennel.

Looking to take advantage of the turnover, the Chiefs’ offense ran into an energized 49ers’ defense. Two blown up plays started the drive, and the third and long ended in a completion short of the sticks. The offensive line lost the battle at the line of scrimmage to begin this game.

The 49ers took the ball back and picked back up the first-drive’s momentum, gaining 18 yards on a play-action completion. However, Karlaftis and linebacker Nick Bolton blew up the following first down play. That was followed by a holding penalty on left tackle Trent Williams, dooming San Francisco’s drive from going anywhere from there.

From their own 11-yard line, the Chiefs’ offense popped with a 10-yard run by running back Isiah Pacheco. However, the following play was a sack allowed by left tackle Donovan Smith, which set back the possession. On third down, a scrambling Mahomes couldn’t find room, and Kansas City was forced to punt.

The 49ers’ offense continued the impressive rhtyhm, leaning on big passes by quarterback Brock Purdy. He completed one corner route over cornerback Joshua Williams, then laced a throw over the middle to get deep into Kansas City territory. However, defensive end Felix Anudike-Uzomah blew up a run play soon after, putting the 49ers in third and long as the first quarter ended.


Second quarter


A great pass breakup by cornerback Trent McDuffie forced a long field goal attempt by the 49ers. The kick was successful, and San Francisco had an early 3-0 lead.

The Chiefs looked for a big play to answer the 49ers’ score, and got one when Mahomes unloaded to wide receiver Mecole Hardman on a deep post. The huge throw gained 53 yards, but was followed by a fumble from Pacheco. The goal-to-go situation was wasted, and the 49ers had the ball back.

The San Francisco drive started with promise because of a Kansas City mistake: Nick Bolton committed a horse-collar penalty. However, the defense stepped up to force a third and long soon after; on the pass play, Purdy was chased down and sacked by safety Justin Reid.

Kansas City’s offense could not harness the spark that the previous possession had for a moment. An intentional grounding call on Mahomes doomed the drive from the start, and the Chiefs had to punt quickly.

The undisciplined actions of the Chiefs continued on the next defensive drive, when a third-down situation was negated by an unsportsmanlike conduct by cornerback L’Jarius Sneed. A few plays later, San Francisco executed a trick play, with McCaffrey taking the ball for a score after receiving a wide receiver pass. The 49ers took the 10-0 lead with four minutes left in the first half.

Kansas City took over the ball in the four-minute drill, moving the chains once before facing third down at the two-minute warning.

On third down needing nine yards, Mahomes avoided pressure to find room outside the pocket, eventually finding wide receiver Justin Watson over the middle to convert. That was followed up by a few positive completions by wide receiver Rashee Rice, who set up a first down at the 14-yard line when Kansas City opted to use a timeout.

Two quick-hitting plays to Rice gained minimal yards, leading to third down with 30 seconds to go. Needing five yards, Mahomes moved up in the pocket looking to pass, but was eventually sacked. That set up a field goal attempt; the Chiefs converted, closing the 49ers’ lead to 10-3.

A short run later, the 49ers were content with going into halftime with a 10-3 advantage.


Third quarter


The Chiefs had a nightmare start to the second half, when a pitch to Pacheco bounced off his shoulder pads for a fumble. The ball was recovered, but two plays later, a scrambling Mahomes looked downfield — but the pass went right to a 49ers’ defensive back. That gave San Francisco possession near midfield.

Backed up against the wall, the Chiefs’ defense played aggressive by sending Chenal into the backfield on first down. That caused an incompletion, which was followed by another on second down. That made it third and long; linebacker Willie Gay Jr. kept an eye on Purdy, chasing him down as he scrambled.

That brought up fourth down, and San Francisco was forced to punt, being too far from a field goal attempt.

After being pinned at the 1-yard line, Mahomes found Kelce with space to near the first-down marker. However, the Chiefs were stuffed on the ensuing run, leading to another punt.

Needing another stop from the defense, the Chiefs clamped down and got it: first down was blown up by defensive tackle Chris Jones, leading to a tackle for loss by Chenal. On the following third and long, a blitz forced a hurried throw that landed incomplete downfield.

With the defense bailing the Chiefs out once again, the offense finally showed some life — especially when Mahomes ran through contact on a scramble to move the chains on third down. On the next play, he pulled a option look, taking advantage of a good fake to run 22 yards.

The unit stalled from there, but the drive was enough to set up kicker Harrison Butker to make a 58-yard field goal, narrowing the 49ers’ lead to 10-6.

The Chiefs’ defense stepped up once again, forcing a quick three and out and giving the ball back to the offense. When Mahomes and company couldn’t find any room to work again, the move was to punt right back to San Francisco.

However, the punt was muffed, leading to a recovery and Chiefs’ possession. On the next play, Mahomes found wide receiver Marquez Valdes-Scantling in the end zone to take a 13-10 lead.

Now defending a lead, the Chiefs’ defense quickly put the 49ers into third down again. This time, San Francisco converted with a quick pass in front of cornerback Joshua Williams. Then, a short run moved the chains near midfield, which led to the fourth quarter.


Fourth quarter


A big completion for the 49ers landed them just outside the red zone to start the final period. On the next play, it appeared Purdy had a touchdown pass, but Chris Jones disrupted his throwing motion to cause an incompletion. That eventually pushed the 49ers to a third and short, where an outside run was stuffed. The 49ers went for it, converting on a quick out pattern.

A few snaps later, the 49ers found the end zone on a quick slant, taking the lead back with a score of 16-13; the point-after attempt was blocked.

Looking for a rhythm to take back the lead, the Chiefs’ offense started with a long completion to tight end Travis Kelce. Two plays later, Mahomes faced third and 10, and used a quick throw to Kelce to avoid a caving pocket and move the chains. Then, he layered a throw to the sideline, finding Justin Watson to get inside the red zone.

Two strong runs by Pacheco got the offense inside the five-yard line. From there, the Chiefs’ pass game failed to find a window to the end zone. Kansas City settled for the field goal, tying the score at 16-16 with under six minutes to go.

The 49ers used two explosive plays to start the possession, working into Kansas City territory as the clock ticked towards the four-minute mark. The offense chipped away at the Chiefs, setting up in third and five at the two-minute warning.

On the pass attempt to convert, cornerback Trent McDuffie blitzed and batted down the pass. That led to a field goal attempt, which gave the 49ers a 19-16 lead with just under two minutes to go.

Kansas City made it look easy getting into San Francisco territory, using underneath passes to get past midfield over a few plays. When the offense ran into third and short, a dumped off pass to running back Jerick McKinnon kept the possession alive. When faced with another third down, Kelce found room on a shallow crosser, sprinting down the sideline to the 11-yard line.

With under 10 seconds to go, a pass to Kelce fell incomplete — then the Chiefs decided to kick a game-tying field goal. That evened the score at 19-19 with three seconds left. That led to overtime, the second occurrence in Super Bowl history.


Overtime


The 49ers started with possession, beginning at the 25-yard line. A defended pass led to second and 15, when the 49ers committed false start on top of that. That led to third and 13, where the pass rush forced an uncomfortable incompletion — but McDuffie committed holding in the secondary.

With new life, the 49ers converted another third down, beating the blitz across the middle to near midfield. Purdy did it again a few plays later, a much bigger gain to McCaffrey this time. That put the 49ers in scoring position, advancing into the red zone with a strong run game taking advantage of a tired defense.

A holding penalty gave the Chiefs relief, but the 49ers overcame it, getting to the 15-yard line and leaning on the run game still. The run defense stepped up to force third and four; a pass attempt was disrupted by Jones, leading to an incompletion. That sets up the 49ers to kick a field goal, taking the overtime lead 22-19. The Chiefs have a chance to win with a touchdown.

The Chiefs immediately ran into fourth and short, after the 49ers swarmed on runs and an underneath completion to Rice. On the conversion attempt, Mahomes faked a handoff from shotgun, then shot upfield to move the chains. On the next third down, a quick pass to Rice underneath set up another set of downs.

From the 49ers’ 41-yard line, the Chiefs continued making plays, the latest being a Mahomes scramble up the middle on third down. That got Kansas City inside the 15-yard line. Inching closer, the Chiefs eventually rolled Mahomes out, where he found wide receiver Mecole Hardman to score. It secured another Super Bowl for the Chiefs, winning 25-22.


Special Teams


Kicker Harrison Butker made a short field goal before halftime, giving the Chiefs’ their first points. In the third quarter, Butker set the Super Bowl record by hitting a 58-yard field goal. He made the point-after attempt that followed the first touchdown of the game in the third quarter.

Punter Tommy Townsend has five punts through the third quarter; the second was downed at the 17-yard line of San Francisco. He had another land inside the 20-yard line later on.

Punt returner Richie James gained five yards on his sole return through the first quarter. He earned seven yards on another punt.

Cornerback Joshua Williams made a strong, open-field tackle on the punt returner in the first quarter.

Cornerback Jaylen Watson recovered a muffed punt in the third quarter, setting up the Chiefs’ first touchdown.

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