(Houston, TX)– It took almost 20 years but I think I speak for all dirty birds when I say..’It was worth the wait.’ The Falcons have been consistent all season, redefining their defense and adding to an already beast like offense. A lot of people doubted the authenticity of the Falcons’ talent. But if you are a true fan, then you know that this return has been in the making for quite a while.
It’s been a long week which started for the Falcons on Sunday when they landed in Houston and got ready for the biggest game of their lives. During the walk-through on Saturday, Atlanta felt good. The Patriots arrived on Monday and got to work immediately with a schedule that didn’t hold back and mirrored that of the Falcons. The big question..who would show up on Sunday?
Most of the media tried to shy away from the Brady Scandal that led to him being benched for the first few games this season. And with his return to the Super Bowl, most thought it would be his revenge of sorts. Revenge? Not so sure about that considering the Patriots are a Super Bowl team. They’ve been there done that. Atlanta on the other hand, has had to work. And after rolling through Seattle, Green Bay and at the half of Super Bowl LI, the Patriots, it certainly looks like there’s a new sheriff in town, giving new meaning to the term underdog and clearly marking themselves as the one to fear in the National Football League.
The Falcons jumped out early and that questionable defense that part-time fans like to question stepped up and held the Patriots to just 3 first half points. With a 14-0 lead, Rober Alford intercepted Tom Brady and returned the ball 82-yards for a TD. Atlanta led 21-3 going into the half. Rushing 86 yards in 9 attempts and Passing for 115 yards, New England struggled to stop the Falcons on the ground as well.
Second half, Atlanta seemed to slow down a little bit.. Everything that seemed to be going in the wrong direction for the Patriots, started to change. And then they scored. And after a turnover, a field goal, a TD and a two point conversion, next thing you know it’s 20-28….and the game played on.
Fourth quarter less than 3 minutes to play, you hit the kitchen to re-up on your drink, came back and it was 28-28 with 57 seconds left in the game. What in the entire hell happened? That’s why you love the game. Brady connected with Amendola doubled with a penalty on the Falcons and it’s tied. Atlanta gets the ball, Matt Ryan uses that arm and with 18 seconds left, it’s 3rd down and 6, Ryan is forced to let it loose to no avail. 11 seconds left, Falcons punt and we’re headed into OT.
Patriots win the toss and Tom Brady who had been sacked more than 14 times during the game reset and led a charge that would end up with James White driving and getting his hand in the end zone and New England wins Super Bowl LI 34-28.
Post Game With Tom Brady:
“…It was a hell of a football game. There was a lot at stake tonight. You know, we played our tails off all season to get to this point and it’s hard to win a game in the NFL. And to beat this team and to get down 28-3, it was just a lot of mental toughness by our team and we’re all going to remember this for the rest of our lives.”
Brady has dealt with a little bit of everything this year and as for the adversity, “We’ve done pretty good over the last few years, you know? We were in the AFC Championship last year and won the Super Bowl two years ago, so I don’t think anyone’s feeling bad for the Patriots. I don’t think anyone feels bad for the Patriots.”
As for making that dramatic comeback. “We were just trying to get it in. I mean, I don’t think it was – I mean you’re playing with fire if you’re trying to manage the clock when you’re down eight points. So just get it in however you can and James (White) ran it in. What’d he have, three touchdowns tonight? It was unbelievable. What a hell of a game he played. It was awesome.”
Revenge indeed for Tom Brady and a lot of respect for the Atlanta Falcons. Nobody has won more Super Bowls than Tom Brady and he clearly just redefined momentum.