GLENDALE, Ariz. — The field at State Farm Stadium turned into a Super Bowl slip and slide on Sunday night, and after the Kansas City Chiefs outlasted the Philadelphia Eagles 38-35, the surface was among many hot topics.
“The field was kind of terrible,” Kansas City defensive lineman Frank Clark said. “We’ve had this problem in Arizona before. A lot of these stadiums try to do new tactics with the grass, they try to do new things. I’ve been playing football since I was 7. The best grass is grass that is naturally there.
“At the end of the day, it was the field that we were given.”
Players from both teams had a hard time keeping their footing, leading several to change their cleats. Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes slipped while trying to make a cut but was able to gain a few more yards. Kansas City receiver Skyy Moore lost his footing on a jet sweep, and running back Isiah Pacheco even slipped on his celebration after scoring a touchdown.
Eagles offensive lineman Jordan Mailata compared the field to playing in a water park.
“The footing? It was terrible,” he said. “But the Kansas City Chiefs had to play on it, too. To be fair, they kind of said it was terrible, too, during the TV timeout. So, I’m glad we were on the same page.
“It was just slick. You couldn’t anchor. You had to get your whole foot in the ground. If you try and use just your toe, you’d slip right away. You saw the receivers — it was like a water park out there. And we’re playing on grass.”
Philadelphia quarterback Jalen Hurts was among the players who changed cleats to get better traction. And oftentimes, after the whistle, players would stop to look down at where they planted their feet before getting back into the huddle.
“If you look at the film, everyone slipped on both sides,” Eagles linebacker Haason Reddick said. “I’m not going to sit here and use it as an excuse or complain about it. It was evident, though. If you see the tape, it’s on there.”
Both teams managed to reach 340 or more total yards of offense, however, and they combined for 73 points.
“This is a game of adjustments, and we had like four dudes changing their cleats at halftime,” Clark said. “Just try to figure it out. But bad field or not, you’ve got to play football.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.