Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes credited God on Sunday after advancing to his fourth Super Bowl in five years, while San Francisco 49ers quarterback Brock Purdy gave glory to the Lord after his team advanced to Super Bowl LVIII later in the day.
Mahomes, who led the Chiefs to a 17-10 victory over the top-seeded Baltimore Ravens in the AFC Championship Game and has already won two Super Bowls in his young career, said in a post-game interview on CBS that God placed obstacles in his team's way this year, but they have persevered.
"They were going to challenge us, and the guys stepped up and made plays. I mean, God put a lot of adversity in our way this year. And we accepted the challenge, and we're better for it," the 28-year-old said. "I mean, it's been a heck of a year. We're not done yet. But this is a way to get there."
"[We've] got a lot of guys on this team that know how to win," he added. "Playoffs get around, and we're going make it happen. And now we're going full circle. The job's not done. We got to go out there to Vegas, play a great team in the Super Bowl."
Chiefs' Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt also praised God in his post-game interview following Sunday's win.
"It's such a special night for us. First of all, I want to give God the glory, and I want to congratulate the Ravens on an amazing year. Four years ago, when you handed us our first Lamar Hunt Trophy, I gave it to my mom, and the first thing she did was kiss it," Hunt said.
"That moment showed how much she loved my dad and how much she loved the Kansas City Chiefs. She would be so proud … of our coaching staff and the entire team tonight. … We're going to the Super Bowl."
The Chiefs will face off against the 24-year-old Purdy and the San Francisco 49ers — the top seed in the NFC. On Sunday, the 49ers overcame a 24-7 halftime deficit to beat the Detroit Lions in the NFC Championship Game 34-31. This year's Super Bowl, which will be played on Feb. 11, will be a rematch of Super Bowl LIV in 2020 when the Chiefs beat the 49ers 31-20.
In his post-game comments, Purdy, who is in his second year in the league and was the last person selected in the 2022 NFL Draft, praised God after the victory on Sunday.
"First of all, Glory to God. He's given us this opportunity … and for us, it's a team sport," he said. "You know, we knew we had [a] half left. Defense did their job. Boys on offense took care of business. Coach called a great game, and we had the faithful behind us the whole way. We love you guys."
Neither Mahomes nor Purdy have shied away from sharing their faith in the past.
Mahomes, a two-time winner of the NFL MVP Award, told reporters before last year's Super Bowl that his faith plays a role in everything he does.
"My Christian faith plays a role in everything that I do," Mahomes told the press. "I mean, I always ask God to lead me in the right direction and let me be who I am for His name."
"So, it has a role in everything that I do," he continued. "And, obviously, it will be on a huge stage in the Super Bowl that He's given me, and I want to make sure I'm glorifying Him while I do it."
Mahomes said before Super Bowl LIV in 2020 that he grew up in church and faith has "always been a big part of what I do."
"Faith has always been big with me," he said at the time.
"Obviously, I want to win every game, but I'm glorifying Him every single time I'm out there," he added.
"As long as I'm doing everything the right way and the way that He would want me to do it, then I can walk off the field with my head held high and be able to be the man that I am," he said.
As for Purdy, he said during an appearance on the Sports Spectrum podcast last year that he always tries to remember the words of Jesus as he navigates injuries and the highs and lows of an NFL career. He pointed to Jesus' warning in Mark 8:34: "Then Jesus called the crowd to Him along with His disciples, and He told them, 'If anyone wants to come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me.'"
"I didn't want to grip onto this life of, 'Oh my gosh, I'm in the NFL, I have a starting quarterback role, I'm, you know, I can't lose it," he said. "I was reminded what Jesus had told us thousands of years ago in terms of don't try to hold on to your life, you're going to lose it, you know, and the world wants you to go this way or that way.
"The minute you have fame and if you're trying to chase status and money and all this kind of stuff, it's, you'll lose your life rather than, you know, denying yourself, picking up your cross, keeping my eyes on Jesus."
Earlier this year, 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan said during a press conference that faith drives his "steady" quarterback.
"He's a very faith-based person. I think that gives him his foundation as much as anyone I've been around," Shanahan said. "He's taken this whole off-season as good as you can. … He handles the pressure well and really doesn't change.
"I think that's why the guys love him, and I think that's why he'll continue to get better."
Nicole Alcindor is a reporter for The Christian Post.