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'Child of God' Harrison Butker hits Super Bowl-winning kick for Chiefs, Patrick Mahomes named MVP

Two weeks after his last-minute field goal sent the Kansas City Chiefs to the Super Bowl, Harrison Butker’s 27-yard field goal with eight seconds left on Sunday gave the Chiefs a 38-35 victory in Super Bowl LVII. It’s Kansas City’s second championship in four years.

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“You just got to go out and focus on what you can control,” Butker said in his postgame press conference. “I kind of had the easy job there. Offensive line did a great job blocking, great snap, great hold and thankfully the ball went through, and all glory to God.”

The Chiefs found themselves down 24-14 at halftime, thanks to the strong play of Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts, who rushed for two touchdowns and threw another in the first half. To make matters worse, Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes re-injured the ankle that has been bothering him all postseason.

But Mahomes, who is well known for fourth-quarter comebacks, had another one brewing. Though Kansas City trailed 27-21 entering the fourth, it scored 17 points in the final quarter to pull out the victory.

After the game, Mahomes was named MVP. He finished with 182 passing yards, three touchdowns, no interceptions and 44 rushing yards.

“I felt really good until I reaggravated [the ankle] a little bit,” Mahomes said in his postgame press conference. “But you’re in the Super Bowl, you can worry about getting it healthy in the offseason. So I just kind of just fought through and we were able to win the game.”

On defense, the Chiefs allowed 270 yards to the Eagles in the first half. But in the second half, Philadelphia could only manage 147 yards of offense and 11 points.

The leader on the Chiefs D was linebacker Nick Bolton, who led all players with nine tackles. The highlight of his night, however, was picking up a Hurts fumble and taking it 36 yards for a touchdown.

“I actually had a dream about scooping and scoring in the Super Bowl two nights ago,” Bolton said in his postgame press conference. “For it to happen is surreal. I just thank God, my family, teammates and coaches, and my community and Chiefs Kingdom. They all played a part in this win for sure.”

The victory goes down as the Chiefs’ third Super Bowl in history. Three years ago, Mahomes led his team back from a 10-point, fourth-quarter deficit to beat San Francisco, and the franchise’s first Super Bowl came 50 years prior to that one.

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Earlier this week, Sports Spectrum spoke with Butker, Mahomes and Bolton — and numerous other Chiefs and Eagles players — about their faith in God.

“[God] is the most important thing,” Butker told Sports Spectrum. “If I didn’t have faith in God, I don’t think I’d be the father I am, the husband I am, the kicker I am. That kind of sets the tone for everything else and everything falls under that, but that gives me the strength to go do everything I need to do.

“I may have fears about it — I might have pressure — but I know I’m a child of God and He’s gonna protect me. And maybe that protection comes with some suffering, but that’s what’s best for me and I gotta accept that suffering and grow as best I can with that.”

Butker said he realized more than ever this season that his true worth is found in Christ alone.

“You miss some kicks and you realize, ‘OK, my identity can’t be all as a football player.’ So I grew a lot in my prayer life knowing that I’m nothing without Him and I gotta lean on Him, and if He wants to take anything away from me, He can. And if He wants to add anything, He can. It’s all up to Him.”

Mahomes said he asks God for direction in his life and that he aims to glorify Him.

“My Christian faith plays a role in everything that I do,” he said. “I always ask God to lead me in the right direction and let me be who I am for His name. So it has a role in everything that I do. Obviously we’ll be on that huge stage in the Super Bowl that He’s given me, and I want to make sure I’m glorifying Him while I do it.”

Chiefs team chaplain Marcellus Casey says Mahomes is a regular attendee at the team’s chapel services, and the 27-year-old says he’s recently enjoyed spiritual growth.

“I feel like I’ve grown in my faith these last few years and I think that’s given me more sense of who I am and why I play the game,” he said, adding, “It just kind of relieves the pressure of playing a football game because I know that I’m on that football field to glorify Him before everything. So it’s not about winning or losing, it’s about going out there and being the best that I can in His name.”

Bolton talked about seeing his football career as a blessing from God, and reflected on the role his faith has played in his journey.

“Just a lot of gratitude … how much I’ve grown as a person, as an individual, a football player, a teammate, a follower of Christ,” he said.

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