49ers players made troubling admission after Super Bowl loss
The San Francisco 49ers were not as prepared as they could have been for Super Bowl LVIII on Sunday night, and some players essentially admitted that after the game.
The 49ers lost to the Kansas City Chiefs in a thrilling 25-22 overtime game at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nev. Once the game went to overtime, many viewers were surprised to learn that the rules for OT in the playoffs are different from those in the regular season.
In the regular season, the team that receives the ball in overtime can win the game with a touchdown. If the defense holds the receiving team to a field goal, the team that kicked off in OT then gets a chance to possess the ball and go for either a field goal to tie or touchdown to win.
The NFL implemented a new rule prior to the 2022 season that makes it so both teams are guaranteed an opportunity to possess the ball in overtime. The only way the receiving team would not have a chance to possess the ball is if the kicking team recovered an onside kick and then scored.
According to Lindsay Jones of The Ringer, multiple 49ers players were unaware that the OT rules are different in the postseason. Defensive lineman Arik Armstead said he was made aware when the rules were shown on the videoboard at Allegiant Stadium during a TV timeout after regulation. Fullback Fullback Kyle Juszczyk admitted to reporters that he assumed San Francisco chose to receive the ball in OT because they would have an opportunity to win with a touchdown, which is the case during the regular season.
“You know what, I didn’t even realize that the playoff rules were different in overtime,” Juszczyk said. “So, I just assumed you just want the ball because you score a touchdown and win, but I guess that’s not the case. So, I don’t totally know the strategy there.”
— Ari Meirov (@AriMeirov) February 12, 2024
It probably didn’t matter all that much that some 49ers players were unaware of the rules. Either way, they were trying just as hard to score a touchdown on their first possession and then come up with a stop.
If you’re wondering how Niners players could miss such an important detail, there is reason to believe head coach Kyle Shanahan did not know the rules either.