Patriots Come Back From The Dead To Win Super Bowl LI
The Super Bowl was over in the third quarter...then all of a sudden it wasn't. Never count the Patriots out with Tom Brady playing quarterback.
Brady and the Patriots were down 28-3 in the second half, then they proceeded to put on the greatest comeback effort in the history of the NFL playoffs. The Falcons had the game in hand, then they let it slip through their fingers.
Atlanta jumped out to a 21-0 lead, and things looked bleak for New England. They tacked on a field goal before the end of the first half, but when the Falcons scored to extend their lead to four scores, 28-3, nobody thought New England could come back.
Brady had to work for his fifth Super Bowl trophy. He chipped away at the lead, with the help of the Patriots' defense, and they forced the first overtime game in Super Bowl history. From there, he attacked a shocked Falcons defense and set up the winning score on a pitch to James White, who had 14 catches for 114 yards and two touchdowns. It was an unbelievable spectacle to watch, but is anybody really surprised?
Once the Falcons started to led the lead slip, it almost felt inevitable that Brady and the Patriots would make them pay. Speaking of making people pay, Patriots owner Robert Kraft didn't hold back when talking about the sweet feeling of getting back at Roger Goodell for penalizing his team for the first four games of the season.
“A lot has transpired during the last two years, and I don’t think that needs any explanatio," Kraft said, while holding the Lombardi trophy. He then ranked this year's Super Bowl victory next to all the rest, "This is unequivocally the sweetest.”
Kraft got to bask in the glory, but Brady was the true star. He passed for 466 yards in the win, and he shook off an 80+ yard pick-six to Robert Alford in the first half to pick his game, and his team, up for one of the most incredible finishes in NFL history.
Even though New England got the victory, the state of Louisiana still shined on the biggest stage.
Former LSU linebacker Deion Jones forced a fumble that led to Atlanta's first score, and Alford made the Southeastern Lions and everybody in Hammond proud when he brought his interception back all the way for a score. The state of Louisiana celebrated when they made plays, but they made even more of a ruckus when the Falcons choked.
The entire thing felt surreal down the final stretch. Matt Ryan and the rest of the Falcons looked on with dazed looks on their face as the Patriots chipped away at their lead. When they punted the ball away, leading by eight with more than three minutes left to play, the momentum was completely on New England's side. Then, Brady proceeded to prove why he's one of the greatest players in the history of the NFL.