Super Bowl: New England ends epic event extremely ecstatic

David Wertheim, Business Manager

In arguably the greatest football game in NFL history, the New England Patriots captured their fifth Super Bowl Championship by defeating the Atlanta Falcons 34-28 yesterday in Houston.

Leading up to the game, all of the hullabaloo surrounded the Falcons defensive ability to stop New England quarterback Tom Brady and keep the Patriots offense out of the end zone. For the first half, they did just that holding the Patriots to just three points en route to a 21-3 halftime lead, helped by a pick-six by cornerback Robert Alford on a poorly-thrown pass by Brady.

Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan found tight end Austin Hooper for one of the first-half scores, and running back Devonta Freeman took it himself for the other, while New England’s sole score came in the form of a 41-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski as time expired in the first half.

After a mediocre halftime show, the Falcons got the ball first in the second half and promptly scored again on a six yard pass from Ryan to running back Tevin Coleman, stretching the Atlanta lead to 28-3. Naturally, no team had ever come back from a deficit this large. Before yesterday, teams that held an 18+ point lead in the NFL Playoffs were 91-0. Brady and New England had other ideas, however.

With about two minutes to go in the third quarter, Brady found unsung hero James White for a five-yard passing score. Gostowski missed the extra point however, which meant New England still trailed 28-9. With nine minutes remaining in the game, Gostkowski hit another field goal to cut the lead to 28-12. A Brady touchdown pass to Danny Amendola cut the lead to 28-18, followed by a trick two-point conversion play which allowed White to score the two and make it a one-score game.

After an incredible catch by wide receiver Julio Jones, the Falcons were sitting deep in New England territory with under four minutes to go. They should just be able to run a few plays and kick a field goal to ice the game, right? Wrong.

After an incomplete pass, a sack, and a penalty, the Falcons were knocked out of field goal range. A punt set New England up at the nine yard line, where Brady and his offense began the “Two Minute Drill” offense while Atlanta tried to do everything they could to hold New England out of the end zone.

Brady dinked and dunked his way down the field before Julian Edelman made perhaps the greatest Super Bowl play of this decade when he caught a pass that Alford should have picked off. This story does not do the play justice, as Edelman was able to snatch the pass in his outstretched fingertips before it hit the ground, setting Brady and co. in great field position. A few plays later, White ran it in from one yard out to cut the lead to two, 28-26. A screen pass from Brady to Amendola tied the game and a few plays later, we headed to overtime.

After winning the toss, New England started on offense where virtually everyone knew what the outcome of the drive was going to be. Sure enough, a few plays later, Brady got his team into the red zone where White ran it in again to seal the greatest comeback in NFL history and officially make Brady the greatest quarterback of all time. Brady finished with 466 yards, while White hauled in 14 catches and three total touchdowns.