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#pounditMonday, March 4, 2024

Video appears to prove Kyle Shanahan did not know Super Bowl OT rules

Kyle Shanahan in a postgame interview

San Francisco 49ers players admitted after the Super Bowl on Sunday that they did not realize the rules for overtime were different in a playoff game from a regular-season game, and the same may have been true for their head coach.

The Kansas City Chiefs defeated San Francisco 25-22 in overtime at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, Nev. In an interview immediately after the game, Shanahan was asked by CBS reporter Evan Washburn if there is anything the coach felt he could have have done differently down the stretch.

“I mean, love to score a touchdown there at the end and not give Pat another chance,” Shanahan said.

You can hear the exchange at the 34-second mark below:

That certainly makes it seem like Shanahan did not know the overtime rules. He was likely referring to the regular-season overtime rules, where if the team that receives in OT scores a touchdown the game is over.

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 a playoff game that goes to 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.

Shanahan might try to argue that he was referring to regulation when he said he wanted to score a touchdown and not give Mahomes another chance, but that would not add up. The 49ers kicked a field goal with 1:53 left in regulation to go up 19-16. Kansas City had two timeouts at the time, so the Chiefs were going to get another chance anyway. The only way they would not have is if the Niners used up all the clock at the end of regulation. But, even in that scenario, they would have used up all the clock and then kicked a field goal for the win.

Between Shanahan’s comment about not giving Mahomes another chance and 49ers players admitting they did not know the overtime rules, it is not a stretch to conclude that Shanahan did not know the rules, either.

If Shanahan was, indeed, unaware of the 2022 rule change, that would add completely different context to his explanation for why he chose to receive at the start of overtime.

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