Last Sunday in Miami, Florida, we witnessed one of the worst choke-jobs in sports history. Super Bowl LIV featured the two hottest teams in the National Football League, but what we saw on Sunday with the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs was that no matter how aggressive one coach has shown to be, there is always a moment where they can crumble and fold.
In a whirlwind second half comeback, the New England Patriots defeated the Atlanta Falcons 34-28 in Super Bowl LI.
After going down 28-3 in the third quarter, the Patriots smashed the record for largest comeback in Super Bowl history, overcoming a 25-point deficit.
The previous record was just 10 and was achieved three times: the Redskins in Super Bowl XXII, the Saints in Super Bowl XLIV, and most recently, the Patriots in Super Bowl XLIX.
The Patriots’ victory also came in the first overtime in Super Bowl history, with both teams tied at 28-28 at the end of regulation.
The first half of play was completely one-sided, with Atlanta going into halftime up 21-3.
After a scoreless first quarter, the Falcons struck first on a 5-yard rush by running back Devonta Freeman.
Kicker Matt Bryant converted four of four PAT attempts during the game. Freeman would go on to finish the game with 75 yards on 11 carries.
The score was set up by a forced fumble by Falcon linebacker Deion Jones.
The Falcons would score again, this time on a 19-yard pass from QB Matt Ryan to tight end Austin Hooper.
On Saturday, Ryan was named 2016 NFL MVP and Offensive Player of the Year.
He would finish the game with 284 yards on 17-for-23 passing.
Next, the Falcon defense joined in on the scoring.
Corner Robert Alford intercepted a Tom Brady pass and returned it for the score.
The Patriots would get on the board as time expired in the first half with a 41-yard field goal from Stephen Gostkowski.
The Falcons added to their lead in the third quarter with another TD pass by Ryan, this time to running back Tevin Coleman.
Bryant’s PAT extended the Falcon lead to a game-high of 28-3.
Then, the New England comeback began.
The Pats scored their first touchdown of the game in the third quarter on a pass from Patriot QB Tom Brady to running back James White. Gostkowski missed the ensuing PAT, making the score 28-9.
Next, Gostkowski would connect on a 33-yard FG attempt to make the score 28 -12 early in the fourth quarter.
Another Brady touchdown pass, this time to receiver Danny Amendola, would make the score 28-18.
Needing a 2-point conversion, the Pats would opt for a little bit of trickery, direct snapping the ball to White who would carry it in for the conversion.
After another defensive stop, New England would make their final drive to tie the game, ending on another touchdown rush from White. Needing yet another 2-point conversion, Brady would find Amendola in the flat, who would dive into the end zone for the conversion. Tie game.
The Falcons would get one last opportunity with one minute left to play, but they would fail to move the ball, ending regulation and sending the game into the first ever overtime in Super Bowl history.
The Patriots won the toss and elected to receive the ball to start OT.
With the comeback nearly complete and the victory within reach, Brady led the Patriots down the field to the Falcon goal line, where White would take the ball in from two yards out to give the Patriots the 34- 28 win.
White would finish the game with 29 rushing yards on 6 carries and 110 receiving yards on 14 receptions.
Brady broke the record for passing yards in a Super Bowl with 466 yards on 43-for-62 passing. The previous record was 414 yards by Kurt Warner in Super Bowl XXXIV.
With the victory, Brady also broke the record for most Super Bowl titles by a quarterback with 5. He is now tied with Charles Haley for most Super Bowls won as a player. Haley won three Super Bowls with the San Francisco 49ers and two with the Dallas Cowboys.
The 2015 Super Bowl is in the books and it was everything the fans expected, and more. The New England Patriots came out on top with a last minute win over the Seattle Seahawks, 28-24. The win was New England’s fourth Super Bowl victory in franchise history.
A controversial call by the Seahawks to pass the ball from the 1-yard line instead of running with the ball ended up being a costly decision as Patriots un-drafted rookie, Malcolm Butler, stepped in front of Russell Wilson’s pass to make the game-ending interception.
Tom Brady won MVP and was 37 of 50 for 328 yards with four touchdowns and two interceptions for New England.
Wilson completed 12 of 21 passes for 247 yards with two touchdowns and one interception for Seattle.
After a fast and scoreless first quarter, the Patriots got on the scoreboard with an 11-yard pass from Brady to Brandon LaFell with 9:47 left in the half. Seattle tied the game with a 3-yard run by Marshawn Lynch at the 2:16 mark. Lynch finished with 102 rushing yards.
With 31 seconds left before halftime, Brady connected with Rob Gronkowski on a 22-yard strike to take the lead, 14-7.
Wilson and the Seahawks did not waste any time. Wilson hit Chris Matthews with an 11-yard pass to tie the game again at 14 right before the half.
Seattle took the lead for the first time in the third quarter with a 27-yard field goal by Steven Hauschka, making it 17-14.
With 4:54 remaining in the third quarter, Wilson connected with Doug Baldwin from 3 yards out to increase their lead to 24-14. The Patriots would hold the Seahawks scoreless the rest of the way.
With 7:55 remaining in the game, New England closed the gap to 24-21 with a 4-yard pass from Brady to Danny Amendola.
With only 2:02 left on the clock, Brady found Julian Edelman for a 3-yard pass to take the lead 28-24. The last two minutes made for an exciting and controversial finish to the 2015 edition of the Super Bowl.
Jermaine Kearse of the Seahawks had a juggling catch that ultimately led to Seattle being goal to go at the 1-yard line. However, the Seahawks decided to pass and that’s when Butler made the big-time interception for the Patriots to win.
The Seahawks actually had more yards of total offense with 396, while the Patriots ended with 377. However, the Patriots gathered 25 first downs throughout the contest leaving Seattle with 20.
The 49th Super Bowl played out to be one of the greatest, if not the greatest of all time.