Super Bowl 2021 Tampa Bay crushes Kansas City at the hands of its defense
Lthe Tampa Bay Buccaneers are Super Bowl champions for the second time in its history, managing to give one of the biggest beatings in the history of the Super Bowl despite not being favorites.
What were the keys to victory? Here are the top five.
Before this match, Mahomes had never lost by double digits. In their 9 previous losses, the rivals had scored 36.2 points. Tampa Bay knew they had to score to win and came up with a different plan early on.
In the first half of games against the Packers and Saints, they ran 83% and 67% of their first down plays. TOnte the Chiefs, they threw more than they spent in the first half (61.9%), leaving out carries (only 5 of the last 17 were carries) en route to score a touchdown in three of his last four series, and the one that did not stay in yard 1.
Two of his scores came on first-down passes, in which they averaged 9.2 yards per pass attempt and three interferences that allowed them to move the chains to build the advantage.
Kansas City made too many mistakes that cost them at least 11 points and they could be more only in the first half.
First, Tyreek Hill dropped the pass (complicated and all) that would have been 7-0. Chris Jones lost his mind and handed out an unnecessary rudeness penalty when the Bucs were going to face 3 & 7. They didn’t score because they were stopped on fourth and goal at the 1-yard line and the score remained 7-3. The Chiefs came out boxed, but cleared after Travis Kelce dropped a key pass on third down. Tampa was going to start from his 20 yard, but the kick was repeated for the umpteenth penalty and the ball was taken at the 38th by the Chiefs.
The Bucs did score after a Holding punishment erased Tyrann Mathieu’s interception. The error cost them 7 in the end, not just three, as a field goal attempt was erased by another penalty and on the next play, Gronkowski scored his second score.
The finishing touch came in the last seconds of the first half: as against the Packers, opposing defense gave away to go from a one-touchdown margin game to double-digit. It wasn’t because of a Hail Mary here, but because Andy Reid gave Brady time. With two timeouts, the Bucs raced, apparently content to go into halftime winning 14-6. KC received to start the third quarter, but they sinned as ambitious, calling for timeouts after the first two plays of the rival. The Bucs perked up, moved the chains and with two penalties they gained 42 yards to reach the 1-yard line with 13 seconds. Then Brady found Antonio Brown for 21-6. If you don’t ask for time out, the half is over and the story of the second half changes radically.
This, in addition to the beating of Mahomes, led to Tampa controlling the clock in the second half and they did not get into third and long situations.. In the game, they went 4 of 12 at third and did not convert any more than 4 yards. If the game was more even, 14-6, the calls of the offense and the defense change.
Many consider the most important factor for the losses the Chiefs had on their offensive line, but even with all that, Mahomes wouldn’t have had to shoot that much and so deep had he been 14-6 at halftime, instead of 21-6 or 28-9. Yes, they had already pressured him in the first half, but that changed everything.
In the end, Mahomes was pressured on 29 pass attempts, breaking the previous Super Bowl mark that Jim Kelly had in the XXVI edition. Going down for so many points no more short passes to nullify the pressure of the line of the Bucs and the brutal beating began.
The defensive coordinator deserves a coaching position after this. Adjusted to limit big plays by the Chiefs who hurt them in week 12 and showed their devilish speed to close the gaps when they caught short passes. Tyreek Hill was missing for the first 45 minutes. They put pressure on Mahomes en route to his worst game in the NFL.
Kansas City, still with everything, arrived 5 times inside the 20-yard line. 6 drives actually crossed the 50-yard line. They didn’t score a touchdown at all. Tampa Bay wasn’t great, but scoring six in 3 of your 5 trips within the 20, with another that was inches from scoring.