|Ryan congrats Brady after amazing comeback by Pats.|
The game was looking like a blowout at 28-3, and through 3 quarters it was appearing that the big highlight of the game was Lady Gaga's halftime show. My friend Charles was on his phone, on NFL.com, placing his vote for Devonta Freeman of the Falcons, as Super Bowl MVP.
Throughout the game, I was texting my wife who was watching over her brother in the hospital, the scores, for awhile her responses were "F@#% Yes!" (I believe she actually hates the Patriots more than me) -- then as I started texting her 28-9, 28-12, she said she started feeling that annoying feeling that all of non-Patriot fans know all too well!
I remember at one point in the 3rd, when Brady through an incomplete, my friend said something on the lines of Brady being off -- I disagreed, take away the first quarter, his stats were starting to compile into something really good. I noticed that the Patriots have controlled the clock as well, but still even at 28-9, we were still laughing when that extra-point bounced off the uprights -- I said out loud "Wow, you know it's not their day, when they can't kick extra points!"
When the score became 28-12, I joked that all the Patriots need now, is 2 touchdowns & 2 two-point conversions... note to self, never joke about such things EVER again!
I said at half-time that the Falcons key was to never let up, although aggressive in some regrettable decisions that would come later, I felt they were not as aggressive everywhere else, they were not attacking like they were in the first two quarters... they should have been running it more & eating that clock up as well. I spoke about the Falcons at the half, to not let up, everyone at the party looked at me as if I had two heads, with one of them saying something "I think this game is over."
There was that part in me, was thinking "Yeah, dude it's over..." and then there was the realistic me thinking, I have seen them comeback time & time again in the regular seasons from 14-17 points down. So when it was 25 down, I'm thinking it's just one more extra play here & there from deficits they have come back from the past, but.... this will all be avoidable with the Falcons running the clock and 3rd quarter down.
When the Matt Ryan fumble happened, that's when I heard the trouble horn go off -- New England scored easily and the two-point conversion was flawless, a direct snap to the running back. I said to myself, if they accomplished that two-point conversion with such ease, the next one will be just as easy.
Now to the Falcons' next-to-last drive of the 4th, in which Julio Jones made that excellent catch... it was like watching a horror story on what happened next. They didn't get much on a run after that, than an incomplete, then came a holding -- it was like the Falcons suddenly panicked.. a far cry from what we were watching in the 1st half.
When the Patriots got the ball back, and were down 28-20, I think myself & everyone in the room knew that suddenly New England was in the driver's seat; The Patriots committed two turnovers early on, and we know after watching the Pats all these years that they got all that out of their system already.
Also that Julian Edelman catch -- Are you frickin' kidding me?!
Now personally, I and everyone in the room, and probably across the nation DID NOT see that ball break the plank, but.... you know damn well, that the very next play the Pats would have got it done, so no debate there... like I said, they won the game when they won that coin-flip.
The greatest comeback in Super Bowl history was now complete, but was it the greatest game ever? This seemed to sprout like weeds on my Facebook feed, and I quickly (and confidently) can say...
This game was not even the best game of THIS post-season, that belongs to the Dallas-Green Bay NFC Divisional Playoff Game that we experienced 3 weeks ago. Was it the greatest game in the minds of every Patriots fan ever? Yeah, Probably.
If I was to rank the Super Bowls quickly from the top of my head, they would go down as this... (from #10 to #1)...
- #10) Super Bowl XXIII (San Francisco 20, Cincinnati 16) - The game itself was a snoozer for about 45 minutes or so, but it all ended with a beautiful drive by the calmest man on the planet in Joe Montana -- Joe Cool indeed "Hey is that John Candy?!
- # 9) Super Bowl XXXVIII (New England 32, Carolina 29) - The game was low-scoring and quiet in first half as both teams were figuring each other out, then it became a shoot-out between the two teams' passing games -- back & forth, until Adam Vinatieri for the second time of his career, kicks a game-winning Super Bowl field goal for Patriots.
- # 8) Super Bowl XLIX (New England 28, Seattle 24) - The game lived up to it's hype, and to the very last second, when Seattle head coach Pete Carroll did the unthinkable, and not ran the ball with 'sure thing' Marshawn Lynch to put the game away (Everyone in the stadium & nation were expecting him to have the ball). If there was ever a time, I felt that the winner should have an asterisk next to their name & a game where the team that lost, really coughed up one up -- it was this one!
- # 7) Super Bowl LI (New England 34, Atlanta 28) - The first-ever overtime in Super Bowl history, matched by biggest comeback history (25 pts down), all brought together by the greatest Super Bowl champ of all-time in Tom Brady. This game has the ability to move up this chart in time, as it all sinks in, but it's not the 'Greatest Game of All-Time'.
- # 6) It's a tie... Super Bowl X (Pittsburgh 21, Dallas 17) & Super Bowl XIII (Pittsburgh 35, Dallas 31) - Sure, I sort of cheated here, but it's two match-ups between two classic teams which featured many of the same players. It was tough to choose between the two, so I clumped them... between Lynn Swann's catch in X & XIII's drop by the "sickest man alive" Jackie Smith, both games had plenty of drama and still stand the test of time.
- # 5) Super Bowl XLIII (Pittsburgh 27, Arizona 23) - I remember that game having a bit of everything, in so many ways it feels like a duplicate to games such as XXXVIII (Pats-Panthers) & possibly that of my other choice (XLIX) -- plus great plays by Santonio Holmes & James Harrison.
- # 4) Super Bowl XXV (N.Y. Giants 20, Buffalo 19) - First game decided on a field goal, Scott Norwood's name would echo across upstate New York in a negative way (Football's equivalent to Bill Buckner). The game was during a tough time for our country (Desert Storm) and Whitney Houston's National Anthem still reigns supreme!
- # 3) Super Bowl XXXIV (St. Louis 23, Tennessee) - A magical season for both teams came down to a game that would literally would kickoff the close Super Bowls trend that we know today. This game came down to clutch tackle & a fierce comeback by the Titans; A very exciting time as the 'Greatest Show on Turf' Rams were led by Kurt Warner, who literally came out of nowhere -- one of the best feel-good stories ever in all-of-sports.
- # 2) Super Bowl XXXII (Denver 31, Green Bay 24) - John Elway finally gets his, while Terrell Davis had a huge night.
- # 1) Super Bowl XLII (N.Y. Giants 17, New England 14) - Perfection stopped, by perfect script. Great defense, plenty of drama, all capped off with Eli Manning (somehow) escaping to connect pass to David Tyree (WHO?!)
At the last second I juggled XLIII to #5, bumped LI from #9 to #7, I feel a lot better about this list now, and although I have personal favorites like my Dallas Cowboys dominating the Buffalo Bills in Super Bowl XXVIII -- I needed to be as unbiased as possible.
Now onto Tom Brady and why I think he will retire after all of this...
- It's perfect: Go out on top of with unbelievable 25-pt comeback (31 unanswered points).
- It's the perfect screw-you to Goodell; Banned for 4 games due to "Deflategate", march team back to Super Bowl, end on the highest note possible with first-ever Super Bowl overtime.
- His body language, coach Bill Belichick's body language & the way they celebrated -- when Tom Brady crouched down on the field, and he had all those cameras taking pictures of the back of his jersey (facing up to cameras) it was like an iconic Michael Jordan moment to me.... I looked up at my friend, while watching this go down, and I said "He's going out on top, this is it, he's retiring"... My friend responds "I think you're right".
- Re-watch those celebration moments New Englanders, you may exactly see what I am talking about.
- He won his 5th Super Bowl, setting a record for QB's, passing Joe Montana, and has now officially won the best QB in Super Bowl history, if not the best QB ever... period.
These are my responses of the game, I'm sure I will get some flack on where this game stands in Super Bowl history or a debate if this is truly the end of Tom Brady, but seriously, what better way to go out?!