PHOENIX ( Associated Press) – Philadelphia Eagles head coach Nick Siriani is excited that young aspiring football players around the world will get a chance to see two black quarterbacks in the Super Bowl for the first time.
He’s also excited by the fact that they’re going to see two really good quarterbacks.
“I’m so excited for the quarterback and for both kids,” Siriani said on Monday at Super Bowl media night. “Not only are they two black quarterbacks, but they are two of the best in the NFL this year. First team All-Pro and second team All-Pro. Both at the highest level.”
There are many stories to this Super Bowl, but the matchup between Philadelphia’s Jalen Hurts and Kansas City’s Patrick Mahomes tops the list.
Mahomes isn’t overlooking the importance of Sunday’s matchup in Glendale, Arizona.
“I think about it a lot,” Mahomes said. “The quarterbacks that came before me, Shaq Harris, Doug Williams, that laid the foundation for me to be in this position. This is something that covers all sports. If you think about Jackie Robinson and the color barrier breakers in baseball, I wouldn’t be standing here today if it wasn’t for them.
“To be very fortunate to be in this position and to play against a great man like Jalen, it will be a special moment. I’m glad we’re here today, but how do we keep going? How can we inspire young kids who want to fulfill their dreams of being a quarterback?”
And it’s not just the quarterbacks who are enjoying the historic matchup. Running back Jerrick McKinnon said the players are very aware of what they are seeing.
“We’re going to make history,” McKinnon said. “It’s something wonderful. Something that I can remember and tell my kids ‘I was a part of that, I felt it’. So it’s a blessing. The whole experience is a blessing.”
Besides being good, both quarterbacks are tough.
Hearts missed two games at the end of the season with a shoulder injury that still plagues him. The Eagles didn’t have to rely on him in two comfortable playoff victories. He had 275 passing yards and two touchdowns. On the ground, he had 73 rushing yards and two touchdowns.
These are modest numbers by their standards.
Appearing in the Super Bowl for the third time in four years, Mahomes helped the Chiefs defeat the Cincinnati Bengals 23–20 while limping with a high ankle sprain.