The defensive end, currently of the San Francisco 49ers and most recently of the Kansas City Chiefs, enjoyed a solid first season in the Bay Area despite dealing with some injuries, tallying 6.5 sacks in 11 regular season games. That was enough to wash the bad taste out of his mouth from his Kansas City departure.
A Pro Bowler with the Chiefs, with which he spent his first five seasons, Ford saw his stellar time in Kansas City end on a sour note, when he was called offsides on what would have been a game-clinching interception in the 2018 AFC title game against New England. The pick was called back, the game went to overtime, the Patriots moved on, the Chiefs went home and Ford was traded to San Francisco.
Asked during Super Bowl LIV Opening Night if he's tired of being queried about the unfortunate penalty, Ford joked, "Hell yeah," before adding, "Nah, it's cool. It's part of it. It's just part of it."
Ford continued, "I'm being really serious, I've been through worse than that. I wasn't even supposed to be playing. I came off my second back surgery that I had to beg my surgeon to do. He didn't want to do it. I wasn't supposed to play last year. I had my second back surgery before that year. Nobody expected me to come back. I came into training camp, I was 25 pounds under weight. So, I've been through worse things than that. You have to block out the negative, focus on the positive."
There's a lot of positive to go around on both sides. Both the defensive end and the Chiefs made it to the Super Bowl in the season following Ford's folly. In what would otherwise be labeled a "revenge game," Ford appears to hold no grudges against the team with which he got this close and traded him away.
"I was anticipating that this (matchup with K.C.) could be a real thing," Ford said. "The closer we got to it, I'm just like, 'Yo, this is really happening.' And so, we're here. It still don't feel real, but it will be real on Sunday night.
"I'm very fortunate. I don't remember of a player ever being in this situation, and I feel fortunate. I'm going to make the most of this opportunity."