San Francisco held a double-digit lead late in the third quarter, but collapsed on the way to losing Super Bowl LIV to the Kansas City Chiefs on Sunday.
Here’s what Shanahan had to say after the game:
On how he will remember this season despite tonight’s defeat: “Yeah, it was a tough loss and it hurts everybody in that room losing the Super Bowl. We had opportunities to win that and came up short. Win or lose, it doesn’t change how I feel about our team. I'm proud of all of the guys for what they did all year, and I’m proud of what they did today. Kansas City played a good game. They were better than us today. We can deal with that, but we're obviously disappointed.”
On his perspective on the second to last drive when WR Emmanuel Sanders was overthrown: “Yeah, Emmanuel did a good job just getting over the safeties. I didn’t see how the pocket was, so I’m not sure. I was looking down the field. It looked like it just missed him.”
On his thought process at the end of the first half: “They had three timeouts and it was 10 to 10. The last thing we're going to do there is allow them to get ball with three timeouts left, especially with their quarterback and the offensive speed, and go down and score before half. Felt real good at 10-10, especially with us starting with the ball. I thought it played out alright. I thought we should have got points, but they end up calling that (pass interference) on (George) Kittle.”
On Patrick Mahomes’ third-down completion to Tyreek Hill: “I’m not sure exactly what happened. Looked like we were playing a zone defense and he was allowed to hold onto the ball for a while. And then Tyreek got behind us on a corner route.”
On the offensive pass interference call against Kittle: “I don’t get to see it very good from the sideline, but I was definitely surprised the way they were letting them play defense.”
On his assessment of Jimmy Garoppolo’s performance: “I think there were some good things. We’ll be able to find out more. I thought he played all right.”
On Kansas City turning it on in the fourth quarter: “That team, that’s kind of how they’ve been all year. They’re not a team that does it every drive. They get a little bit hot and cold. They can score very fast. That’s why there were two playoff games where they were cold to start and they were down, and then by halftime they fixed it in both games. That's how the team is. That team doesn’t do it every single drive, but it was a matter of time. They got a lot of plays. We didn't convert those third downs in the fourth quarter. You don’t convert those third downs, you don’t get an explosive run, you don't get too many chances.”
On the mood in the locker room: “They’re just hurting. Guys put it all out there. They’ve done it all year from the first game to the last game. It’s a real close team. Everyone is disappointed, and they should be. I wouldn’t expect anything different. Guys put their heart into the season and came up one game short. Extremely proud of us and everything, but this is going to take a little time to get over, but we’ll be all right.”
On whether he wanted to control the clock more with the running game: “You’d always love to do that, but we just do what we do. We tried to run the ball. We play action, convert third downs. I think the plays got a little lopsided a little bit where we didn’t have 15-play drives. I didn’t feel like we punted until the fourth quarter.”
On if the Chiefs did anything new to confuse Garoppolo in the fourth quarter: “No, they did about the same. During the fourth quarter, we had a little pass to Kittle that he made a good play on. We had another good one to Deebo (Samuel) that sailed over his head. I think Jimmy got hit as he was throwing that, but I couldn’t tell. Then Jimmy had Kittle really open over the middle on the next drive, but Chris Jones did a hell of a job to tip the ball.”
On if he wished they would have run the ball more when up 20-17: “No, not at all. The last thing you’re thinking about when you’re up three points and there is that much time left, the clock is not an issue at that time, especially with the timeouts. The issue was moving the chains. If you move the chains, then you will wind the clock. I want to say we had a run on first down and a tipped ball on second down, I’m not exactly sure.”
On if they considered attempting a two-minute drive at the end of the first half: “We did consider it, but where we got the ball and the fact it was 10 to 10 and they had three timeouts, if we would have gotten an explosive run on the first one, we would have. I want to say we got a four-yard run, so we let the clock run a little bit to get it down. But no, we were good with that situation. We would do that every single time, especially with us starting with the ball in the third quarter. Once I realized we did get the first, we did take our shots. We would’ve gotten the points from that, but we got an unfortunate penalty.”
On if he ever felt comfortable when leading 20-10: “No, you never feel good until the game is over.”
On the decision to kick a field goal on the first drive of the second quarter: “I thought about it for a little bit there. Probably would have if it was less than one, but it was closer to two. Robbie (Gould) is automatic, and our defense was playing pretty good at the time.”
On if he is concerned the team will struggle to respond from the loss: “It shouldn’t be a problem. We’ll lick our wounds, and we’ll get over this. We’ll be fired up for next year. We have a lot of people coming back. We surprised a lot of people this year. We knew we had a good team. I’m very proud of the guys and how much better they got throughout this year. We get almost all of these guys back and plan on adding a few more. We’re going to rest a little bit and get over this some, but we will be very fired up for next year.”
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