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Western New York connections to Super Bowl LVIII

todayJanuary 29, 2024 5

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BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — While the Buffalo Bills are resigned to watch yet another Super Bowl from home this year, there are still a few Western New York ties to the upcoming matchup between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers on Feb. 11.

Both teams who will meet in Las Vegas for Super Bowl LVIII have at least one member whose football path has traversed through Western New York. Here are the participating players and coaches with connections to Buffalo.

Did we miss anyone? Email reportit@wivb.com with “Super Bowl connections” in the subject line to let us know about a player, coach, or other team member we should include.

San Francisco 49ers

Offensive guard Jon Feliciano was previously a starter on Buffalo’s offensive line, starting all 16 games at right guard in 2019 before injuries shortened his 2020 and 2021 seasons with the Bills. He was the Bills’ 2020 Ed Block Courage Award recipient after overcoming a torn pectoral and starting nine games while helping Buffalo reach the AFC Championship. Feliciano signed with the 49ers this season after spending 2022 with Brian Daboll’s Giants. Feliciano has filled in at both guard spots for the 49ers, making seven starts in the regular season, and he started both playoff games at right guard.

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Wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud was the Bills’ sixth-round draft pick in 2018. He made five catches for 36 yards and returned four punts and one kickoff for a total of 38 yards before being waived the following offseason. He then returned to Buffalo in the middle of the 2019 season, where he was signed to the practice squad, serving as wide receiver and scout team quarterback. His career included stops with Carolina and Pittsburgh before latching on with the 49ers in 2022. While his usage on offense is limited, McCloud can be seen returning kicks and punts — and he could potentially be the first player to touch the ball in the Super Bowl if Kansas City kicks off.

49ers assistant head coach and running backs coach Anthony Lynn spent two seasons on the Bills’ coaching staff, and was the interim head coach for one game in 2016. Lynn was assistant head coach and running backs coach under Rex Ryan in 2015 and 2016. He was promoted to offensive coordinator after then-OC Greg Roman was fired two games into the 2016 season, then coached the season finale as interim head coach after Ryan was fired. After leaving Buffalo, Lynn was the Chargers head coach for four seasons, spent 2021 as the Lions offensive coordinator, and joined the 49ers in 2022.

Deuce Schwartz is in his second season as an offensive quality control coach for the 49ers. He entered the NFL coaching ranks with the Bills under Rex Ryan, serving as a defensive coaching assistant in 2015-16.

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Jordan Hogan, a Newfane grad who played collegiately at Brockport before entering the coaching ranks, was named a Bill Walsh NFL Diversity Coaching Fellow for the 49ers, working with the team’s wide receivers during training camp. He previously spent time on the coaching staff at Colgate, Cornell, Stonehill, and Buffalo State. He also had coaching fellowships with the Ravens, Colts and Bills. Hogan told the Niagara Gazette in September he was offered a full-time job with the 49ers as an offensive quality control coach, though he does not appear on the team’s website or media guide.

Kansas City Chiefs

Buffalo native Jody Fortson has played tight end for the Chiefs since being signed as an undrafted free agent in 2019. Fortson, who graduated from South Park High School and began his collegiate career as a wide receiver at Erie Community College, is already a two-time Super Bowl champion despite not having appeared in either game. Fortson was on the practice squad for the Chiefs’ Super Bowl LIV win in 2020 and was on injured reserve during the team’s triumph over Philadelphia last season. The 28-year-old won’t be on the field for this year’s title game, either — Fortson’s season ended in August after he suffered a dislocated shoulder. He has four NFL touchdowns in his career.

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When is the Super Bowl? What channel is it on?

The Super Bowl is scheduled to kick off at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 11. The game will be broadcast nationally on CBS. In Buffalo, that means the game’s on 4! WIVB will air the Super Bowl in Western New York. Pregame coverage begins at 11:30 a.m.

​ BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — While the Buffalo Bills are resigned to watch yet another Super Bowl from home this year, there are still a few Western New York ties to the upcoming matchup between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers on Feb. 11.

Both teams who will meet in Las Vegas for Super Bowl LVIII have at least one member whose football path has traversed through Western New York. Here are the participating players and coaches with connections to Buffalo.

Did we miss anyone? Email reportit@wivb.com with “Super Bowl connections” in the subject line to let us know about a player, coach, or other team member we should include.

San Francisco 49ers

Offensive guard Jon Feliciano was previously a starter on Buffalo’s offensive line, starting all 16 games at right guard in 2019 before injuries shortened his 2020 and 2021 seasons with the Bills. He was the Bills’ 2020 Ed Block Courage Award recipient after overcoming a torn pectoral and starting nine games while helping Buffalo reach the AFC Championship. Feliciano signed with the 49ers this season after spending 2022 with Brian Daboll’s Giants. Feliciano has filled in at both guard spots for the 49ers, making seven starts in the regular season, and he started both playoff games at right guard.
Bills name Joe Brady as full-time offensive coordinator
Wide receiver Ray-Ray McCloud was the Bills’ sixth-round draft pick in 2018. He made five catches for 36 yards and returned four punts and one kickoff for a total of 38 yards before being waived the following offseason. He then returned to Buffalo in the middle of the 2019 season, where he was signed to the practice squad, serving as wide receiver and scout team quarterback. His career included stops with Carolina and Pittsburgh before latching on with the 49ers in 2022. While his usage on offense is limited, McCloud can be seen returning kicks and punts — and he could potentially be the first player to touch the ball in the Super Bowl if Kansas City kicks off.

49ers assistant head coach and running backs coach Anthony Lynn spent two seasons on the Bills’ coaching staff, and was the interim head coach for one game in 2016. Lynn was assistant head coach and running backs coach under Rex Ryan in 2015 and 2016. He was promoted to offensive coordinator after then-OC Greg Roman was fired two games into the 2016 season, then coached the season finale as interim head coach after Ryan was fired. After leaving Buffalo, Lynn was the Chargers head coach for four seasons, spent 2021 as the Lions offensive coordinator, and joined the 49ers in 2022.

Deuce Schwartz is in his second season as an offensive quality control coach for the 49ers. He entered the NFL coaching ranks with the Bills under Rex Ryan, serving as a defensive coaching assistant in 2015-16.
‘Feed the pit’: DA releases names of 10 fans charged for entering Bills stadium construction site
Jordan Hogan, a Newfane grad who played collegiately at Brockport before entering the coaching ranks, was named a Bill Walsh NFL Diversity Coaching Fellow for the 49ers, working with the team’s wide receivers during training camp. He previously spent time on the coaching staff at Colgate, Cornell, Stonehill, and Buffalo State. He also had coaching fellowships with the Ravens, Colts and Bills. Hogan told the Niagara Gazette in September he was offered a full-time job with the 49ers as an offensive quality control coach, though he does not appear on the team’s website or media guide.

Kansas City Chiefs

Buffalo native Jody Fortson has played tight end for the Chiefs since being signed as an undrafted free agent in 2019. Fortson, who graduated from South Park High School and began his collegiate career as a wide receiver at Erie Community College, is already a two-time Super Bowl champion despite not having appeared in either game. Fortson was on the practice squad for the Chiefs’ Super Bowl LIV win in 2020 and was on injured reserve during the team’s triumph over Philadelphia last season. The 28-year-old won’t be on the field for this year’s title game, either — Fortson’s season ended in August after he suffered a dislocated shoulder. He has four NFL touchdowns in his career.
Local Chiefs backers bar is where Chiefs Kingdom and Bills Mafia come together
When is the Super Bowl? What channel is it on?

The Super Bowl is scheduled to kick off at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 11. The game will be broadcast nationally on CBS. In Buffalo, that means the game’s on 4! WIVB will air the Super Bowl in Western New York. Pregame coverage begins at 11:30 a.m. Read More SportsRochesterFirst  

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