Sports Commentary: Super Bowl 57

Jake Hawkins, Staff Writer

Arguably America’s most anticipated annual sporting event, Super Bowl 57 did not disappoint. With multiple storylines and narratives pushed into the game, the two-week break in-between the American Football Conference (AFC)  and the National Football Championship (NFC) final games and the Super Bowl felt like an eternity to some. With the odds for which team would win, the whole world was divided on who would take home the Lombardi Trophy on Feb. 12. Ultimately, the Kansas City Chiefs defeated the Philadelphia Eagles 38-35, granting the Chiefs their second Super Bowl win in the past four years. On the other hand, this marked the City of Philadelphia’s second Championship loss in the past four months, along with the Philadelphia Phillies losing the world series against the Houston Astros in November.

One of the biggest achievements was that this Super Bowl was the first to feature two black starting quarterbacks. For the Chiefs, Patrick Mahomes, who many consider the face of the National Football League, won his second most valuable player — second Super Bowl MVP — and second Super Bowl this season. Mahomes is the first player since 1999 to have won the MVP and the Super Bowl MVP in the same year; the last successful player was Kurt Warner. This now makes Mahomes 2-1 in the Super Bowl, beating the San Francisco 49ers 31-20 in Super Bowl 54 and losing the following year in Super Bowl 55 31-9 to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. 

“I think after the Super Bowl, he’s definitely been cemented as like, a top quarterback all time and it’s like now in his career he could be a Hall of Famer and it definitely puts him in the conversation of being like Brady, and Montana and an all-time great. And basically the best quarterback in the league,” Miami Palmetto Senior High junior varsity football player and football enthusiast Roman Gonzalez said.

For the Eagles, Jalen Hurts’ story differs. Hurts’ journey dates back to 2018, when one of the highest-rated football schools of all time, the University of Alabama, had another incredible season and headed to the college football championship, led by Hurts. The only problem was that Hurts did not play well in the first half of the game compared to the regular season and was benched at halftime, with the score down to 13-0 to the Georgia Bulldogs. Tua Tagovailoa replaced Hurts and proceeded to pull off an improbable comeback against Georgia, winning the game 26-23 in overtime; Tagovailoa capped off his great performance with a 41-yard touchdown pass to Eagles wide receiver DeVonta Smith. This event resulted in Hurts transferring schools to play at the University of Oklahoma, where he played an amazing season throwing 3,851 yards, 32 touchdowns, running 1,298 yards, and 20 touchdowns; finishing second in the voting for the Heisman trophy. Hurts was drafted by the Eagles in 2020 and showed glimpses of success as early as his rookie year. This season, Hurts was one of the main reasons for the Eagles’ success as he nearly won the MVP. After all the adversity Hurts has faced, the future looks bright for the 24-year-old. 

In addition, this was the first Super Bowl in which brothers faced off against each other. Jason Kelce from the Eagles, and Travis Kelce from the Chiefs. 

As the losing team, the Eagles scored the most points in Super Bowl game history for a losing squad. The first quarter ended with a tie of 7-7, but at halftime, the Eagles scored a ten-point lead up 24-14. In the second half, the Chiefs came around and outscored the Eagles 24-11. Jalen Hurts threw for 304 yards and scored a touchdown, as well as rushed for 70 yards and three touchdowns, tying Terrell Davis and setting history as the first quarterback to rush for three touchdowns in a Super Bowl. 

Unexpectedly, multiple players constantly slipped on the field. However, the part of the Super Bowl that has most fans talking about was the holding penalty called against the Eagles in the red zone, resulting in a first down for the Chiefs, and allowing them to take the clock all the way down to eight seconds. Most fans, however, are furious over the fact that an epic Super Bowl was determined by a holding penalty that many fans believed was rigged. 

The halftime show performed by Rihanna caught people’s attention as she announced her second pregnancy. With all the controversy, it is safe to say Super Bowl 57 was one for the books and will set the 2023-2024 NFL season at high anticipation.  Many fans considered this a legacy game for Mahomes with start receiver Tyreek Hill had left the team in the offseason and the Chiefs having previously been underdogs. Following the shock of the Eagles’ loss, they will be back for vengeance and aspire to win the NFC once again. The 2022-2023 NFL season is now over and the wait until September for its return is now in the countdown. What moves in the offseason will teams make? Who will they draft? These are questions that will be speculated on for months. The road to Super Bowl 58 starts now.