Super Bowl 55 live blog: Follow Chiefs-Bucs on Yahoo Sports

The Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers meet up Sunday in Super Bowl 55, a game that’s being live-streamed on the Yahoo Sports app. We’ll be following all the action live here on Yahoo Sports.

Tom Brady wins MVP, confirms he will return next season

“We’re coming back.”

Those were Tom Brady’s departing words as he left the podium after winning his seventh Super Bowl ring and his fifth Super Bowl MVP.

The 43-year-old Brady threw for 201 yards and three touchdowns in the Buccaneers’ 31-9 triumph over the Kansas City Chiefs. Brady got plenty of help, namely from his defensive teammates. Rob Gronkowski and Leonard Fournette also had standout performances for the Tampa Bay offense.

Gronk led the team in receiving, hauling in six Brady passes for 67 yards and two touchdowns. Fournette, meanwhile, led all rushers with 89 yards on 16 carries, including a 27-yard touchdown. Fournette also chipped in with four catches for 46 yards.

- Sam Cooper

The real MVP(s)? The Bucs’ front four

Tom Brady might be the Super Bowl MVP, but the Buccaneers’ defense — and especially that front four — deserves some sort of special mention.

Patrick Mahomes was under fire all game in the Chiefs’ 31-9 Super Bowl loss. Granted, some of that had to do with a banged-up offensive line that featured two backup tackles — and make no mistake, those guys got worked over this game.

But credit should go to the Tampa Bay front that really set the tone for the night. As a group, they collected two sacks, two tackles for loss and eight hits on Mahomes.

The pressure was relentless. All game long. Despite only blitzing on five snaps.

Shaq Barrett, a free agent-to be, just upped his price. He had a game-high four QB hits and had a huge sack midway through the third quarter as the Bucs tried to cut into a 28-9 deficit. On the next play, Barrett pressured Mahomes on his first pick of the game.

Ndamukong Suh had 1.5 sacks in the fourth quarter alone. Granted, he was also flagged for roughing the passer, but Suh was a big part of the Bucs’ success.

Vita Vea was active all night (even lining up at end!) in an effort that went way beyond his one recorded tackle.

Jason Pierre-Paul had a big pass deflection that was nearly a pick. He also added three tackles.

William Gholston tripped up Mahomes on that sidearm fourth-down incompletion in the red zone.

It was a total team effort.

Linebackers Devin White and Lavonte David were special. The secondary was incredible. Todd Bowles’ defensive game plan was next level.

But none of it happens if the Bucs don’t dominate like they did up front. Holding Mahomes and the Chiefs to nine points? Before kickoff, it felt like there was nein chance of that actually happening.

Eric Edholm

Fan on the field livens up dull 4th quarter

Arguably the most entertaining moment of the second half came when a fan ran out onto the field.

Even he was able to make it through the Kansas City offensive line.

The brief interruption came as the Kansas City offense was attempting to get into the end zone for the first time all night. But it never happened. This particular possession ended with a turnover on downs, pretty much sealing the deal for the Bucs to win their second Super Bowl in franchise history.

- Sam Cooper

Two bonkers incompletions, and Chiefs stall again

Patrick Mahomes has more incomplete passes in this game so far than we’re used to seeing.

The final two on the failed drive to start the fourth quarter were absolutely bananas.

Mahomes it out there running for his life against the Buccaneers’ pressure, and and on both plays it looked like the Chiefs’ offensive line just gave the Ole! sign to Tampa Bay.

On 3rd and 9 from the Tampa Bay 11-yard line, Mahomes did his best Josh Allen impression and whirled three or four times before uncorking a wild incompletion — that almost was caught by Byron Pringle! — to the corner of the end zone.

Then on fourth down, Mahomes bailed out the other direction and was tripped up by the Bucs’ William Gholston, but he still managed to get off a sidearm pass — one that appeared to hit running back Darrel Williams in the face.

It, too, fell incomplete. The Bucs took over on downs.

It’s 31-9, Bucs, and it’s getting really late. Even for Mahomes and Co.

Eric Edholm

Patrick Mahomes usually kills the blitz. Tonight? Not so much

In the past, blitzing Patrick Mahomes has been a very shaky decision. He typically kills teams that bring extra pressure.

But the Bucs don’t seem to care. The Chiefs having two backup offensive tackles in the Super Bowl might be part of the reason. Still, it’s fairly incredible that Mahomes started this game 0-for-5 with an interception against an extra rusher.

The Bucs turned Antoine Winfield Jr.’s diving interception into a field goal, extending the lead to 31-9.

And they did it with selective pressure.

Todd Bowles’ defensive gameplan has been nothing short of a masterpiece ... so far.

Eric Edholm

Leonard Fournette keeps making plays

The Tampa Bay offense is on fire.

The Chiefs were able to tack on a field goal to open the second-half scoring, but the Buccaneers responded with another touchdown. This time, it was Leonard Fournette and the ground attack.

Fournette was cut by the Jacksonville Jaguars during the regular season, but has since become a major part of the Tampa Bay offense — especially in the postseason. His 27-yard touchdown run extended the Bucs’ lead to 28-9 and gave Fournette his fourth postseason touchdown this season.

With the score, Fournette is up to 64 rushing yards and 31 receiving yards on the evening. And the Bucs are in the driver’s seat.

- Sam Cooper

Chiefs play small ball, cut into Bucs’ lead

The Chiefs, down 15 to start the third quarter, leaned on the run early on their first drive.

And it worked. Fairly well, anyway.

Clyde Edwards-Helaire, who had only four runs in the first half, received two carries and gained 36 yards. The first one — a 26-yard run off tackle — was the Chiefs’ longest gain of the game to that point.

Darrel Williams even got in the fun, too, with a 3-yard gain.

But the Buccaneers’ defense got pressure on Patrick Mahomes on his 3rd-and-7 pass, and the Chiefs had to settle for a field goal.

It’s now 21-9 early in the third, with Tom Brady getting the ball again. Should the Chiefs have gone for it on fourth down? Well, it’s hard to justify it with Mahomes facing pressure so often.

it will be interesting to see if the Chiefs stick with the run the next few possessions.

Eric Edholm

Chiefs clock management, penalties help Bucs take 21-6 halftime lead

It looked like the Chiefs were going to go into halftime trailing by just one possession. Instead, some questionable clock management and a brutal penalty on cornerback Breshaud Breeland in the final minute of the first half allowed the Bucs to add to their lead.

The Chiefs cut Tampa Bay’s lead to 14-6 with a field goal at the 1:04 mark of the second quarter. And when the Bucs regained possession, the Chiefs wanted to get the ball back. The Chiefs called timeouts after the Bucs’ first two plays of the ensuing drive, plays that gained a total of eight yards.

That set up a third-and-2 with 44 seconds left in the half. If the Chiefs got a stop, they would have had potentially 35 or 40 seconds on offense to put some points on the board before halftime. The Bucs, though, were able to convert on a short Tom Brady completion to Rob Gronkowski.

At that point, Brady put the pedal to the metal. On the next play, he went deep to Mike Evans, who was tripped up by Breeland, who was hit with a pass interference penalty.

Three plays later, after a completion to Leonard Fournette and another pass interference call, Brady hit Antonio Brown for a touchdown, extending the Bucs’ lead to 21-6 with six seconds remaining in the half.

While the pass interference penalties on Breeland and Tyrann Mathieu will be questioned, the clock management strategy of the Kansas City coaching staff will be, too.

Without calling those timeouts, the Chiefs likely would have been able to go into halftime down just 14-6. The Chiefs are set to receive the second-half kickoff, too.

Will that decision-making ultimately doom the Chiefs? It could end up as the focus, but so will the team’s eight first-half penalties for 95 yards.

- Sam Cooper

Questionable penalty takes Brady INT off the board

Well, well ...

That’s now two big what-if plays that didn’t count.

The first was Buccaneers offensive lineman Joe Haeg’s dropped TD pass (followed by a fourth-and-goal stop by the Chiefs).

The second, midway through the second quarter, was the rather soft defensive pass interference call against the Chiefs’ Charvarius Ward, which wiped out an interception off a tipped pass to Tyrann Mathieu.

The ball was intended for Leonard Fournette, who stuck his paw out and the ball deflected to the Honey Badger.

But that play didn’t count when Ward was flagged for some, ahem, rather common physical coverage that you see most Sundays. Are we nuts here?

The refs are calling this one tightly so far. Too tight for our taste, if you’re asking.

And the Bucs later capitalized with a Brady-to-Gronk TD, their second scoring connection of the game, after the Bucs took a field goal off the board when the Chiefs committed a penalty that gave the Bucs a first down.

It’s 14-3, Tampa Bay, and ... oh my.

- Eric Edholm

How about a goal-line stand?

All of the momentum was seemingly on the Bucs’ side. They took a 7-3 lead, quickly forced a Chiefs three-and-out and then were back in Kansas City territory in the blink of an eye.

But then the Chiefs’ defense made an enormous play.

A 31-yard connection between Tom Brady and Mike Evans set up a first-and-goal for Tampa Bay from the 6-yard line. The Bucs were knocking on the door of a two-score lead, but Kansas City had other ideas.

On first down, Ronald Jones gained two yards. On second down, Brady looked to Joe Haeg, an offensive lineman who reported in as an eligible receiver. The pass hit Haeg in the hands in the end zone, but Haeg could not complete the catch while absorbing contact from a Chiefs defender.

On third down, the Bucs went to Jones again, but he gained just a yard.

At that point, the Bucs were facing a big decision and Bruce Arians kept his offense on the field. Surely Jones would be able to punch it in from a yard out? Nope. Jones was stuffed again, and the Chiefs defense kept the score at 7-3.

- Sam Cooper

Tom Brady’s first first-quarter Super Bowl lead

Brady has been to 10 Super Bowls. The only people who have been to more either cover the league or work for the NFL, we suspect.

But — and this is stunning — we ended the first quarter with Brady leading for the first time (!) in any of his Super Bowls.

How is that even possible?

Well, one reason: That was also Brady’s first first-quarter TD pass in the Super Bowl.

- Eric Edholm

Brady, Gronkowski set record, give Bucs the lead

For the 13th time, Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski connected for a postseason touchdown. And this one gave the Tampa Bay Buccaneers the lead in Super Bowl LV.

After the Chiefs took a 3-0 lead to open the scoring, the Buccaneers responded with an eight-play, 75-yard touchdown drive to take a 7-3 lead. Brady completed all four of his passes on the drive, with a screen pass to Cameron Brate putting the Bucs in striking distance.

A few plays later, on second-and-five from the Kansas City 8-yard line, Brady hit Gronkowski in stride for a score. It was the fourth Super Bowl touchdown catch for Gronkowski and his 13th overall in postseason play. All came from Brady.

The score moved the Brady-Gronkowski combination past Jerry Rice and Joe Montana atop the NFL record books for postseason touchdowns. That’s pretty impressive company.

- Sam Cooper

Mahomes, Chiefs strike first thanks to his legs

One early storyline: Patrick Mahomes’ legs apparently will be a big part of this game.

The Buccaneers lost contain a few times, and Mahomes was up to 24 rush yards — and two big first downs — on three carries. This despite reports that his toe is still not fully healthy and likely will require surgery in the offseason.

The Bucs would rather have that than, say, 50-yard bombs to Tyreek Hill. But at some point, Tampa’s defense will need to contain better and keep an eye on No. 15.

But to their credit, the defense has forced Mahomes into a 1-for-6 start passing. Still, though, Harrison Butker hit the game’s first field for the first points of the game.

Kansas City leads, 3-zip.

Eric Edholm

The music was better than hologram Vince

The CBS-produced pregame received some mixed reviews by the looks of it on Twitter.

The Vince Lombardi hologram thing was ... interesting. Did you like it?

But there appeared to be a nice bounce back with the artists taking the stage.

First, there was the talented Amanda Gorman:

Then we received a lovely rendition of “America, The Beautiful” ...

And finally, the anthem — another stirring Super Bowl version:

Let’s get ready for the game now.

- Eric Edholm

Patrick Mahomes, Tom Brady look ready

Can Patrick Mahomes do it again?

Mahomes, last year’s MVP, has the Chiefs in the Super Bowl for a second consecutive season. During pregame warmups, he showed off his insane arm strength by casually tossing this pass from the goal line well past midfield.

He made it look way too easy.

His quarterback counterpart, Tom Brady, is fired up for his 10th career Super Bowl appearance and his first in a Tampa Bay uniform.

- Sam Cooper

Antonio Brown, Sammy Watkins active for Super Bowl

Well, we’re going to see two big-name wide receivers suit up for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs, respectively.

The Bucs’ Antonio Brown suffered a knee injury in the wild-card win over the New Orleans Saints and did not travel to Green Bay for the NFC championship game. But he was a full participant in Thursday’s and Friday’s practices, receiving an increased workload as the week went on.

The Chiefs’ Sammy Watkins (calf) had missed both playoff games this year but earlier this week said he was “very optimistic” that he’d play Sunday.

Both had been listed as questionable for the game.

We also will get to see two other big-name players on Sunday who missed their respective conference title games, with Chiefs running back Le'Veon Bell (knee) and Bucs safety Antoine Winfield Jr. (ankle) also both active. Buccaneers tight end Cameron Brate, who also was listed as questionable, will play.

Here are the rest of the inactives for each team:

- Eric Edholm

25,000 fans, 30,000 cutouts to attend Super Bowl LV

Welcome to Super Bowl Sunday, everybody.

We’ve reached the conclusion of an NFL season played amid a pandemic, and we should be in for an exciting matchup at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.

Super Bowl LV will feature the defending champion Kansas City Chiefs and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Buccaneers are the first team to ever play a Super Bowl in their home stadium, but it won’t be the usual home field advantage thanks to the pandemic.

In-person attendance will be significantly reduced because of the virus. Instead of the usual 65,000 capacity, there will be 25,000 fans on hand with 30,000 cutouts to fill out the stadium. The NFL previously announced that a big chunk of the fans in attendance will be vaccinated healthcare workers who will gain admittance free of charge.

There’s also this guy, who is wearing a personalized No. 19 Chiefs jersey with “COVID” on the back.

A sign of the times, indeed.

- Sam Cooper

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