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Super Bowl 2024: Sadly, it’s the 49ers and Chiefs again

The Detroit Lions had the San Francisco 49ers on the ropes, and let them off the hook.

NFC Championship - Detroit Lions v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

One road team won on Conference Championship weekend. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the Detroit Lions.

The Lions had a 24-7 halftime lead on the San Francisco 49ers, a team not known for big comebacks under Kyle Shanahan. Of course, it’s the Detroit Lions, and everything had to go wrong. A 4th-and-2 drop by Josh Reynolds in field goal range set the tone for the obscene collapse by the Lions. I think everyone knew Detroit would lose after this happened.

Jahmyr Gibbs lost a fumble on the next snap, leading to a tying touchdown. Detroit never recovered and lost 34-31 in the biggest halftime deficit comeback in a Conference Championship game. Yes, the Seattle Seahawks’ 16-0 halftime comeback against the Green Bay Packers no longer holds the record.

Brock Purdy goes from Mr. Irrelevant to the Super Bowl, and honestly there were some damn good plays he made with his legs that shouldn’t be knocked because he’s in a 49ers uniform. That he is seemingly almost impossible to intercept is annoying as hell, but personally, I’m sure he’s thrilled he’s in the big game after leaving last season’s NFC CG with an injury.

Dan Campbell will be scrutinized for the 4th down decisions he made/didn’t make, but the Lions defense didn’t force a punt after halftime, Jared Goff had a few misfires, and Josh Reynolds was damn near playing for the other team with his drops. Hug a Lions fan, because this fanbase has seen some shit.

The 49ers will take on not the Baltimore Ravens, who beat them soundly in the regular season, but the Kansas City Chiefs. Three years ago, the Chiefs were 20-10 down in the 4th quarter but rallied to win 31-20 and end their lengthy Super Bowl drought. Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce helped build a 17-7 lead on the Ravens in Baltimore, while the Chiefs defense did an outstanding job in shutting down Lamar Jackson and closing out another AFC title with a 17-10 victory.

Either the Chiefs repeat as champions, something only done this century by the New England Patriots, or the 49ers end their 30-year wait for a Lombardi Trophy. San Francisco is the early betting favorite.

I’m broken at this point. If the 49ers win? So be it. As Seattle Seahawks fans, we’d be out of shit-talking bullets, so to speak. No one really cares about the Arizona Cardinals, so forget them until further notice.

The Seahawks used to be at the top of the mountain and now they’ve watched their two biggest rivals make it to the Super Bowl twice apiece over six seasons with different quarterbacks each time. During that time, Seattle has maxed out at “good enough to make the postseason” and won a single postseason game over a 90-year-old Josh McCown. For good measure, both teams have knocked Seattle out of the playoffs.

We’ve spent a lot of time watching our rivals actually be great, while our own team hasn’t been great for a good while. Watching the 49ers and Rams have substantially more success than the Seahawks in recent years may even be something that factored into ownership’s decision to oust Pete Carroll as head coach. All the more reason to hope that Seattle aces this next hire and this roster can develop into something actually Super Bowl caliber once again.

Go Chiefs. I guess.