49ers helmet Credit: Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

The NFL made changes to its postseason overtime rules ahead of the 2022 NFL season, but they went into effect for the first time on Sunday night during the Super Bowl LVIII showdown between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers. But in a pretty glaring failure, it sounds like the Niners players weren’t actually aware of the new rules.

The new postseason overtime rules dictate that both teams have at least one possession in overtime, even if the team that has the ball first scores a touchdown on the opening possession. But according to ESPN, “multiple” San Francisco 49ers players did not know this rule heading into overtime.

“I didn’t even know about the new playoff overtime rule, so it was a surprise to me,” Niners defensive lineman Arik Armstead said according to ESPN. “I didn’t even really know what was going on in terms of that.”

And Armstead wasn’t the only player who did not know the rules beforehand.

“You know what? I didn’t even realize the playoff rules were different in overtime,” fullback Kyle Juszczyk said. “I assume you just want the ball to score a touchdown and win.

“I guess that’s not the case. I don’t totally know the strategy there. We hadn’t talked about it, no.”

The Chiefs, meanwhile, were very prepared for this outcome.

“We’ve talked about it all year,” Reid said. “We talked about it in training camp about how the rules were different in regular season versus the playoffs. Every week of the playoffs we talked about the overtime rule.”

Obviously, it’s pretty horrible news for the Niners that they were so unprepared for the situation, and the NFL world had a lot to say about it.

It’s certainly not a good look for San Francisco.

[ESPN]