Unlikely wideouts propel KC Chiefs to Super Bowl LVIII victory

It was a meaningful night for some Chiefs wide receivers who'd fallen on hard time

Super Bowl LVIII - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs
Super Bowl LVIII - San Francisco 49ers v Kansas City Chiefs / Harry How/GettyImages

The Kansas City Chiefs were able to cap off a rollercoaster of a 2023-2024 season with a 25-22 victory over the San Francisco 49ers in Super Bowl LVIII. It was a season full of trials and tribulations and doubts about whether or not this iteration of the Chiefs had it in them to win back-to-back Super Bowls.

Even Super Bowl LVIII saw a lot of highs and lows for the Chiefs. This Super Bowl was almost a microcosm of what the Kansas City Chiefs season was. They struggled mightily throughout the year to sustain any sort of rhythm on offense and they were doomed by self-inflicted wounds and dropped passed from wide receivers.

Let's be honest, the Kansas City in this game saw a lot of those same issues arise and the offense struggled early on. Kansas City was only able to muster 3 points in the first half and they weren't able to capitalize of the 49ers' mistakes.

It was a meaningful night for some Chiefs wide receivers who'd fallen on hard time

The second half was a different story. Kansas City was able to start breaking down the 49ers defense. Of course, it was the usual names like Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce that stabilized the Chiefs' offense and guided the Chiefs to another incredible comeback. However, unlikely heroes were able to propel Kansas City to yet another Super Bowl victory.

Marquez Valdes-Scantling, who was under a lot of criticism from fans all season due to his poor play and drops, came up huge with Kansas City's first touchdown to give them their first lead in the third quarter following a special teams blunder by San Francisco.

Valdes-Scantling has been one of the most frustrating players in recent memory, but he's been one of the most important in the last two years of this amazing five-year run by Kansas City and he added another highlight play to his playoff resume this Sunday when he sparked the Chiefs' offensive outburst in the second half. You can say a lot of things about Valdes-Scantling, but you can't deny that he has been huge in the postseason and a touchdown in the Super Bowl will cause a lot of people to forgive you for your regular season underperformance.

That said, Valdes-Scantling wasn't the only Chiefs receiver to redeem himself in this one, though. Mecole Hardman made two huge plays in this game, including the game-winning touchdown reception at the end of regulation. Hardman has certainly been one of the most frustrating players over the last five years for Kansas City. He went from failed wide receiver on the Chiefs to afterthought on the New York Jets before Kansas City ultimately traded for him in a desperation move to add familiarity to a struggling wide receiver room.

Unfortunately, Hardman would prove to be a net negative for the Chiefs in the regular season, with way too many drops and fumbles. Not only that, but Hardman fumbled through the back of the end zone against Buffalo in the Divisional round of the playoffs when Kansas City was about to go up by double-digits. He was almost assuredly in the dog house after that.

Nope. When Kansas City needed big plays in the Super Bowl, Hardman provided them. He caught a huge deep bomb early on in the first half despite the fact it was quickly negated by an Isiah Pacheco fumble, but his field stretching ability proved to be key. Poetically, Hardman was the one to win the game for Kansas City when he caught a touchdown pass on the play "corndog" that scored two touchdowns in Super Bowl LVII against Philadelphia last year.

Kansas City faced a ton of adversity across the season, and a lot of that adversity was caused by themselves, in fact, but when the biggest game of the year called for someone to step up, two unlikely heroes answered the call. Now, Kansas City has won back-to-back Super Bowls and is officially in the midst of a dynasty thanks to the perseverance of Mecole Hardman and Marquez Valdes-Scantling.