Do I even need to write a recap? If you didn't watch this game, then you missed the greatest Super Bowl of all time. Perhaps even the best NFL game of all time. The greatest comeback in Super Bowl history now belongs to the New England Patriots.
The Patriots should have lost this game. They were turning the ball over, whether it was an extremely poorly timed LeGarrette Blount fumble, which could have put the Patriots up early in this game, or a pick-six by Tom Brady, nothing was going in the right direction. The offense was gaining yards, but could not finish drives, as the Atlanta Falcons epitomized the "bend-but-don't-break" defense we usually see from the Patriots.
Defensively, the Patriots were making timely stops, but were put in terrible situations because of the Patriots offense against a stout and elite Atlanta offense. I want to say things changed in the third quarter, but the Patriots were still unable to get things going offensively. While some people say the comeback started in the third quarter, the Patriots were actually outscored 7-6. Sure, the Patriots were able to finally get into the end zone, but give me a break.
At the start of the fourth, the Patriots were playing "garbage time" football. The Falcons weren't moving the football, but who the hell cares? When leading by 19 or more points after the third quarter, teams are 93-0. Check out the win probability of the Patriots throughout the game, courtesy of the Scorescenter app.
Yup, thats right. The Patriots had a .4% chance of winning this game.
From the 8:31 mark in the 3rd quarter, the Patriots out-gained the Falcons 351-44 in yardage. Its so hard for me to say there was one turning point in this game. If 20 things don't go absolutely perfect, the Patriots probably lose this game. Defensively, Dont'a Hightower's strip sack gave the Patriots a chance to start the comeback, and Thomas Edward Patrick Brady, more commonly referred to as the goat, was happy to oblige. A ton of players on the offensive side of the football had great games, especially in the second half. James White, Julian Edelman, Malcolm Mitchell, etc. But lets talk about the goat.
In the first half, Brady was battling. He was missing throws, receivers were dropping passes, and it was just an overall shit show. However, in the second half, Brady was at his absolute best. Brady went 43-for-62 with 466 yards, two touchdowns and one interception on the day. He was sacked five times and finished with a passer rating of 95.2, but the numbers don't show just how dominant Brady was.
This game has stopped the Brady-Montana debate. It is over. 7 Super Bowl appearances, 5 wins. The number of challenges and amount of adversity Brady has faced this year is nothing short of astounding. When the going gets tough, there is no other professional athlete, let alone quarterback, that I want leading my team.
Brady has joined an elite class of professional athletes. Brady is our Michael Jordan. Brady is our Wayne Gretzky. Brady is our Babe Ruth. What Brady has done is unparalleled in the National Football League. Soak it in.
Oh and this little number dropped last night...