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Chiefs president Mark Donovan: ‘We’re looking forward to making more history’

Posted at 12:51 PM, Jan 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-01-28 18:24:40-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Die-hard Kansas City Chiefs fans know the anguish of losing seasons and early playoff exits all to well.

For President Mark Donovan, going through those times helps to make this season's run to Super Bowl LIV all the more memorable.

Donovan, who reports to Chiefs Chairman and CEO Clark Hunt, has been with the club since 2009.

While head coach Andy Reid and general manager Brett Veach make sure the team is ready go on the field, Donovan is in constant contact — offering support from his team, which oversees the business side including operations at Arrowhead Stadium, the loudest in America.

It didn’t take long for Donovan to realize how special this year's team was. He and the rest of the Chiefs' front office have talked about making history since joining forces.

“We’re looking forward to making some more history," Donovan said recently in an exclusive interview with 41 Action News anchor Kevin Holmes. "To be part of the first team that hosted the very first AFC Championship (Game) at Arrowhead was special. I know, for (Chiefs coach) Andy (Reid) and for (Chiefs General Manager) Brett (Veach) and I, ... to be part of the team that was able to make sure the Hunt family got Lamar’s trophy. That’s special, and that really touched all of us. And to see Norma kiss that trophy on Sunday night, you’ll never forget that.”

Surprisingly, Donovan doesn’t want to forget the hard times that preceded reaching the AFC summit.

“2-14 is hard, 4-12 is hard," Donovan said. "As painful as 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 were, it was good to go through that process. It was good to feel that. I think it made Sunday Night and this week more impactful for us.”

It’s a moment the organization has talked about and truly thought was within grasp since last year’s heartbreak.

“Our first meeting of training camp, Coach (Reid) allows many of us to address the team and you just felt the energy in that room," Donovan said.

Was there any doubt during the season that the team could reach a Super Bowl? Of course.

“Think about this season," he said. "We’re in Denver. (Quarterback) Patrick (Mahomes) is laying on the field. You’ve got some doubts. Where are we going from here? What happens next? Our focus has always been win this week. Let’s make sure we’re doing the things we need to win this week."

There also were two improbable playoff victories. The Chiefs are the only team in NFL history to overcome two consecutive double-digit deficits and win during the postseason.

It's another aspect of this season's run Donovan said makes the 2019 Chiefs special.

“This is Super Bowl 54, in Miami, with this team," he said. "That’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Enjoy it. Enjoy every single minute of it, and take it all in because it’s going to be a fun ride.”