Carlos Dunlap describes Super Bowl win as ‘surreal moment’
By Matt Conner
After over a decade in the league, Carlos Dunlap made his Super Bowl dreams come true on Sunday.
For the last 13 years, Carlos Dunlap has been on the outside looking in when it comes to the Super Bowl despite his best efforts to move his teams along as far as possible. On Sunday, he was an insider to it all.
When the Kansas City Chiefs officially clinched a close victory over the Philadelphia Eagles in Super Bowl LVII, it cemented an evasive career achievement for Dunlap, a veteran pass rusher with a very impressive catalog of steady work in the NFL.
For the first 11 years of his career, Dunlap did the heavy lifting for Cincinnati Bengals teams that were one-and-done in the postseason at their best and taking up last place in the AFC North at their worst. While Dunlap undoubtedly has fond memories of a decade with the team that drafted him, it was sour to never experience the thrills of the postseason with them.
For the last two years before joining Kansas City in ’22, Dunlap headed West to serve as a veteran pass rusher for the Seattle Seahawks. In his first season there, Pete Carroll’s team won 12 games but they were still ousted in the first round of the playoffs (and failed to make it the following year).
The Chiefs went searching in free agent waters this offseason for some pass rushing help after Melvin Ingram spurned them for the Miami Dolphins. Dunlap was the obvious choice given his ability to stay productive so late into his career—he even had 8.5 sacks last season at the age of 32—and he provided a solid veteran addition for the full season in K.C.
Fortunately the deal worked for both sides. The Chiefs got the reliable pass rusher they needed to bolster a thinner unit, and Dunlap got to experience the glory of winning a Super Bowl for the first time by partnering with a Hall of Fame head coach and a loaded roster.
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”It’s a surreal moment,” said Dunlap after the game. “A lot of hard work, dedication, a lot of time, my family, my community, my coaches and my teammates all along the way. I didn’t get to experience this beforehand. I did it for all of us. Everybody feels like a champion. Seeing my mom’s face when they came down on the field – she’s a champion. You can’t tell her nothing else.”
Dunlap admitted that the Eagles put up a strong fight and Jalen Hurts in particular was tough to bring down. “He’s a dual-threat quarterback. We wanted to minimize his ability and make him one-dimensional. We couldn’t fully get that accomplished today, but we did what we had to do to win.”
In the end, Dunlap had 4 quarterback hits for the Chiefs in three playoff games and helped a unit that was often overshadowed by their opponents claim the ultimate title.