San Francisco 49ers players admitted they didn’t know the rules of overtime for the Super Bowl, which the Kansas City Chiefs won and won the title this Sunday. Since 2022, the NFL rulebook has guaranteed that both teams have one possession in postseason overtime – a different scenario from the regular season, when the game ends if the first team with the ball scores a touchdown.
“I didn’t even know about the new extra time rule in the play-offs, so it was a surprise to me. I didn’t know what was happening in those terms. (…) They put it on the scoreboard, and everyone was like ‘Oh, really if you score, they still have a chance,'” defensive tackle Arik Armstead said.
“You know what? I didn’t even realize that the play-off rules were different in overtime. I assumed you just wanted the ball to score a touchdown and win. I don’t think that’s the case. I don’t fully know the strategy. We hadn’t talked about that, no,” added fullback Kyle Juszczyk.
Therefore, article 4.c of rule 16 of the NFL regulations – which concerns overtime – says that “if the score is tied at the end of a 15-minute overtime, or if the second team’s initial possession has not ended, another overtime period will begin”, with play continuing regardless of how many periods are necessary.
This explains Patrick Mahomes’ coolness before the decisive pass to Hardman in Las Vegas, with 6 seconds left in overtime. With possession still valid, the Chiefs would have another chance at the beginning of a possible second overtime.
With that, the touchdown crowned a 13-play, 75-yard campaign led by Mahomes, elected MVP of the NFL’s big decision. The game at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas was only the second in Super Bowl history to go to overtime; The first was the New England Patriots’ historic upset of the Atlanta Falcons in 2017.