The Dust Has Cleared

The dust has cleared from the NFL season and the Super Bowl and now it’s time to put a post-script on some of the stories that are still being talked about.

Are the Kansas City Chiefs a dynasty?

In today’s world of sports it seems there has to be a rating on everything that happens.

Is this game the best of all-time?

Was that play the best that’s ever been?

That had to be the worst play in history.

This player is the greatest of all time.

You’ve seen it and you get it.

What difference does it make?

Why can’t we accept the events for what they are?

As we all know, time determines how great a player or team really is.

So now, the Chiefs have won three Super Bowls in the past five years. I say they have established themselves as the current dominant team in the NFL.

Are they a dynasty?  How do we define one?

At one time, the Cowboys were dominant.

So were the 49ers.

Of course, the Steelers were that and more in my opinion.

And, without doubt, the Patriots were the greatest the sport has known.

If you were to pin me against the wall, and I had to use the word dynasty,  I’d say the Patriots and the Steelers would qualify.

Just sayin’

Now, there’s talk that KC quarterback Patrick Mahomes may just have stolen the Greatest of All Time mantle from Tom Brady.

Easy now.

Mahomes is magic. He’s won three Super Bowls and has a lot of room for more.

He’s has a unique style and a refreshing look on his face, not to mention a killer instinct when the game is on the line and he has the ball.

But Tom Brady won six. And as good as the Chiefs have been in recent years, I don’t think they have the kind of roster the Patriots had in totally dominating everyone in their sight.

When New England won, there was little doubt. The Chiefs are not at that stage.

Plus, their remarkable head coach Andy Reid, who’s coming back for at least another year, may not hang in for a possible six titles, and remember, they don’t occur every year.

On the same topic of who’s the best and who’s the worst, people jump to extremes after a big contest.

The Chiefs were always a step ahead of the 49ers who were a huge disappointment. That’s what people say.

I say hogwash.

Those same folks claim 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan can’t win the big one.

It’s as if his team didn’t belong on the same field as the Chiefs.

Actually KC never led until late in the third quarter.

Then the 49ers came back with an early touchdown in the 4th, but missed the point-after.
Obviously, that was costly.

The game then became a battle of field goals, including  a 53-yarder by Jake Moody of the 49ers, the same guy who missed the PAT earlier,  with less than two minutes left in regulation. That gave San Francisco the lead.
KC tied it and into overtime it went.

This is where we’ve heard the most noise.

The Niners won the toss and elected to receive.

Analytics, who study the game’s percentages and make proclamations in an office, said it was the wrong call.

Again, hogwash.

Had the 49ers decided to give Mahomes and the Chiefs the ball, and he scored a touchdown, the wolves would be howling. How can you give Patrick Mahomes the ball first even though you’ll have a chance to tie the game?
Why play with your backs to the wall?

The reason the 49ers wanted the ball first was simple.

Their defense was gassed having been on the field for 39 snaps in the second half, and the final 11 plays of regulation.

Analytics don’t measure the conditions in real time and the situation at hand.

Head coaches do. That’s what Kyle Shanahan did.

Had the 49ers won and the Chiefs lost, you wouldn’t hear a pin drop.

And by the way, maybe the 49ers were beaten in a Super Bowl that even Andy Reid knows full well, could have gone either way.

And winning the big one?

I kind of think when you come back and beat a team that had you on the ropes to get to the Super Bowl, you and your team are capable of winning “the big one”.

They just fell short against a superb team with a truly great quarterback.

Hats off to the Chiefs.

A few other thoughts.

Upon further review, I understand the circumstances, as does Reid, behind Travis Kelce’s outburst near the end of the first half. The player was frustrated.

But in screaming at his head coach and nearly knocking him down, Kelce crossed the line.

How would he like it if Reid took off his headset and unloaded on him in full view of millions?

Now that Bill Belichick failed to get a head coaching job after parting ways with the Patriots, it’s popular now to expose the dysfunctional manner in which Belichick ran his team, including his feeling that Tom Brady was through as a quarterback when it was apparent he wasn’t.

I will acknowledge that Belichick was wrong about Brady, and clearly did not make the best decisions in the draft and free agency in his final seasons.

But to disparage what the head coach and the franchise achieved over a considerable period of time is a joke.
All good things end, even great things when you think about the New England Patriots. More often than not they never end well.

Let’s see another team get close to what they pulled off.

I think Belichick will coach again. 2025 sounds right.

If you watched the game you heard Tony Romo’s analysis on CBS.

I’ve met him and I like him, and he began his career in spectacular fashion.

But he’s turned into a shrill commentator who gets overexcited, and becomes, in a way, a fan on the air.

My feeling is the game is the excitement, not the voice, and the voice  should reflect the action, not override it, and the analysis should be concise, to the point, and to avoid describing terms which the audience doesn’t understand.

A good guy who fell short in my view.

On the same note, Tom Brady will join Fox Sports and replace Greg Olsen as the #1 expert-analyst next year.

Olsen has done a job good enough to become a top guy at another network.

But I have a feeling Brady, who doesn’t do anything half-hearted, will excel.

Perhaps not right off the bat.

Experience and reps are non-negotiables, but remember what he’s been all about as a player.

Smart, fearless,  likable, and personable.

It’ll be fun to watch.

And a footnote, I don’t say this as a recent Fox Sports alum.

I believe it.

Finally, the biggest headache facing the NFL going forward, is the issue of gambling.

It is embraced by the league, its owners, and partners.

Everyone connected to the game, players, officials, reporters, fans, are aware of its dangers.

Commissioner Roger Goodell once said the integrity of the game is paramount.

Things have changed with the advent of gambling as an economic powerhouse.

Still, I don’t think anything can alter what the Commissioner said years ago.

The integrity of the game is paramount.