The road to Super Bowl LVIII is nearly at its end, but for both the San Francisco 49ers and the Kansas City Chiefs, it has run through Texas.
Some of the brightest stars to play on Sunday in Las Vegas got their start in the Lone Star State. The Dallas Express is taking a look at some of the biggest names on both rosters and how their Texas roots shaped their Super Bowl journey.
The biggest name on the field — and maybe in the NFL — is Patrick Mahomes. Mahomes was a three-sport star at Whitehouse High School just outside Tyler. After graduating, he took his talents to Texas Tech, where he demonstrated his unbelievable skill set as a dual-threat quarterback.
In his final season, he led the nation in passing yards per game, overall passing yards, points, and touchdowns. The Chiefs drafted Mahomes in the first round, 10th overall. Since coming into the league, he has been the most dominant quarterback and is set to appear in his fourth Super Bowl in six years.
More recently, Rashee Rice was lighting up the field for Southern Methodist University. He attended high school at Richland High about 10 miles from Fort Worth. Despite some early-season drops, Rice has emerged as one of Mahomes’ top targets. He set the Chiefs’ rookie receiving touchdown record in Week 15.
On the other side of the ball is linebacker Nick Bolton. Bolton grew up in Frisco and played high school ball at Lone Star High School. He left Texas to attend Missouri for college. Bolton has emerged as one of the key players on the Chiefs’ defense since being drafted in 2021. Bolton might be best remembered for his big-game mentality. In Super Bowl LVII, the big linebacker recovered an Eagles fumble, rumbling 36 yards to the endzone for the difference-making score.
Other notable players on the Chiefs Roster:
- Charles Omenihu, DE, Rowlett — out for Super Bowl LVIII with a torn ACL
Texas Christian University sent a whole bunch of stars to the NFL after their championship run in 2022, and among the players who have made the biggest impact is Dee Winters. The 49ers grabbed Winters in the sixth round, and the linebacker from Burton, Texas, has made life miserable for offenses all season. He has emerged as a star on special teams, where his sure-handed tackles have shut down return opportunities.
Other players appearing on the 49ers Roster from Texas:
- Jake Brendel, C, Plano East
- Tashaun Gipson, S, Dallas Kimball
- Brayden Willis, TE, Arlington Martin
- Spencer Burford, OG, San Antonio Wagner
CORRECTION: This article was updated on February 12 at 9:45 a.m. to note that Patrick Mahomes attended Texas Tech.