Health Expert Says 49ers Super Bowl Loss May Have Saved Lives

Super Bowl
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According to at least one health professional, when San Francisco lost the Super Bowl, the lack of a celebratory parade may have resulted in many lives saved.

The West Coast was already hit by the coronavirus earlier than the rest of the country. Still, according to the Wall Street Journal, even more people would have been exposed to the virus if tens of thousands of visitors would have hit the Bay Area to celebrate in a Super Bowl parade.

As the Journal noted, San Francisco was already dealing with the first few cases of the coronavirus on Feb 2, the day the 49ers lost the Super Bowl to the Kansas City Chiefs.

It would be Kansas City that would get the thrill of a Super Bowl parade, of course. But as the paper points out, tens of thousands of revelers would have flooded San Francisco if the 49ers had come out on top. And missing that parade may have saved lives in the Bay area.

“It may go down in the annals as being a brutal sports loss,” said Dr. Bob Wachter, the chair of UCSF’s department of medicine, told the Journal, “but one that may have saved lives.”

Wachter added that as far as a response to the viral outbreak goes, losing the Super Bowl “may be one of the lucky breaks that spared us from a much worse fate.”

Of course, it isn’t possible to say how many fans would have turned out in San Francisco if the 49ers won the big game. The winning Chiefs brought upwards of 25,000 fans out to watch the champions parade through the streets of Kansas City. In addition to perhaps as many as 100,000 visitors elsewhere in the city that day.

There may have been even more fans turning out, though, if the 49ers had won. For instance, the paper added, “When the Golden State Warriors won their three recent championships, the parades in Oakland attracted reported crowds of between 500,000 to 1.5 million fans.”

The million-fan attendance was also seen when the New England Patriots won the 2019 Super Bowl. According to estimates, 1.5 million fans flocked to Boston for the Patriots Super Bowl parade.

Many have insisted that New Orleans experienced an increased outbreak of the coronavirus because Mardi Gras was not canceled. In that vein, football author John M. Barry told the Journal, “A Super Bowl victory parade may have done what Mardi Gras seems to have done in New Orleans.”

Wachter claimed that in retrospect, losing the 2020 Super Bowl was the best outcome for the City By The Bay. “It made us all feel a bit better about the 49ers’ loss,” he said.

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