Patrick Mahomes ultimately emerged with his third Super Bowl MVP trophy, orchestrating a masterful final drive to deliver the game-winning TD pass to Mecole Hardman. That said, the QB battle was shockingly even overall. Mahomes was the only signal-caller to throw an interception. He managed to complete 34-of-46 passes for 333 yards and two scores. On the other side, Brock Purdy completed 23-of-38 passes for 255 yards and one touchdown.
It would be blatant misinformation to state that Purdy outplayed Mahomes (or even performed equally), but the gap between them was surmountable for the Niners, who played a better game overall. Purdy operated with poise under pressure and even spent the first half tearing through Steve Spagnuolo's scheme.
According to NFL insider Albert Breer, Kansas City coaches came away from the game extremely impressed with Purdy. One coach even went as far as to compare Purdy to a future Hall of Fame QB.
"One of the coaches told me he sees Drew Brees qualities in Purdy."
Chiefs coach compares 49ers' Brock Purdy to Drew Brees
This isn't the first time we have heard the Drew Brees comparison for Purdy, but it is the first time we have to take it semi-seriously. That's a high bar to set, and probably a little unfair to Purdy. But, legacies are formed on the postseason stage. Purdy has been to consecutive NFC championships to start his career. He looked mighty solid under the bright Super Bowl lights in his second NFL season. It's hard not to get excited about what the future might hold.
Lost in the incessant "game manager" debate around Purdy is the fact that he is still 24. He has time to learn and grow. Most QBs don't enter the NFL fully formed. It took Tom Brady a few years to shed the doubters, too. Purdy is clearly not Tom Brady, and he's probably not even Drew Brees. That doesn't mean he isn't special, and it does mean he should probably lose the "game manager" tag once and for all.
The Chiefs were able to get pressure on Purdy late in the game. Chris Jones put on a masterclass in the fourth quarter and overtime. Still, Purdy avoided costly errors and made the correct reads all night. If the offensive line held up better down the stretch, there's a strong chance the Niners would be planning their parade right now — and Purdy would have the Super Bowl MVP trophy to start his collection.
Purdy backed up his reputation in the regular season, too. He completed 69.4 percent of his passes for 4,280 yards, 31 touchdowns, and only 11 interceptions in 16 starts. The Niners were 12-4 in those games. Obviously Purdy has a ton of help, from Kyle Shanahan to the Niners' remarkable star-power at RB and WR. That is part of the conversation with this team.
Honestly, though, every all-time great QB had a ton of help. It's hard to be a great QB with mediocre surroundings. Few can pull it off. That's part of what makes Mahomes' latest title run so impressive. Purdy wouldn't look as solid throwing the ball to Marquez Valdes-Scantling and Kadarius Toney.
Even so, the resumé says what it says. Purdy is a Pro Bowl QB with consecutive deep playoff runs under his belt. It's time to give him your full respect.