28-24 Patriots. Not going to lie, that was the score and outcome I had predicted. But how it happened? I could never even imagine.
This Super Bowl was one of the most exciting I have seen in recent years…especially with the blowout that occurred last year with pretty much the same Seahawks squad.
1. The interception
Once the game looked to be over and the Seahawks were ready to plunge the knife into the Patriots after a circus catch, the unbelievable happened. Malcolm Butler, an undrafted free agent, took charge and snatched the ball right before Lockette could see him coming.
The Seattle OC may have thrown Lockette under the bus by declaring he didn’t “play hard enough,” but who would have expected a rookie to come through with an extremely aggressive play to secure the Patriots’ victory?
It had to be Butler. A veteran would have gone straight for the tackle, keeping Lockette from crossing the goal line. But the speed and determination of Butler, after tipping the throw that would eventually end up in the arms of Kearse at the five yard line.
As a rookie in a Super Bowl game, the adrenaline is pumping, the moment seems to move in slow motion. But Butler, being a rookie, saw only the option to attack the ball instead of the player. And it paid off for New England. He read the play perfectly and completely avoided the pick to rob Lockette of the momentum and the score. All he saw was the ball.
He had to make a do-or-die decision. If he missed the ball or got there too late, Seattle would be up by three or possibly four, depending on their options after the score. If he got the ball, he saves the game. In the split-second decision, he ultimately made sure that he gave his all. Because what does he have to lose, the Super Bowl? (just kidding).
The Butler attempted it and the Butler did it. And the Butler secured the victory by barreling in with his rookie determination (and a little help from the veteran Browner, blocking the incoming pick).
2. The Fight
While I have respect for both teams, this fight was a disgrace to the game of football. Yes, I’ve heard the argument that fighting is a part of sports. Yes, yes it is. And there’s a time and a place for that. I can guarantee you that neither of these teams got to this game because they threw a punch in the final seconds of a game. They’re both classier than that.
Or so I thought. But that fight was one of the worst things I’ve seen. Fights are fights. But fights picked at the end of the Super Bowl (the BIGGEST STAGE in football) by a team that has just thrown away the game? THAT is not classy in the least.
We’ve been discussing “Deflategate” and how we shouldn’t teach our children to cheat? Well, we shouldn’t teach our children to pick a fight if they lose either. But nothing is said about that, now is it? Not comparing the two in the least, but if people have come out and complained that these athletes are supposed to serve as role models for our children, then why do these athletes think that is okay?
The Seahwawks picked the fight with 18 seconds left on the clock…that wasn’t because someone did something on the other team they didn’t like. They were taking out their frustrations in any way they can. So because they are professional athletes, that is okay?
The dramatic ending was miraculous, but the fight put a damper on the entire ending and left a sour taste in my mouth. They’re not five year-olds, fighting over a toy. They are athletes who are playing in the Super Bowl, one of the most-watched sporting events in the United States.
Seattle literally threw the game away and the players threw a temper tantrum. You want a role model? Don’t look at this Super Bowl for one. Unless its Julian Edelman.
Naturally, the quarterback would be named the MVP of the Super Bowl. 26 of the last 42 Super Bowl MVPs have been quarterbacks, understandably. And Tom Brady played one hell of a game, with 4 TDs and 328 passing yards, besides the two interceptions early on. But the reason he won MVP? Because of that final drive. He went 8-8 before settling the ball in Edelman’s hands for the go-ahead score.
The impressive stats put up by Brady definitely deserved the MVP award. And even better? He not only made those throws but utilized both sides of the field. While the Hawks focused on Gronkowski (who, simply put, cannot be stopped), Brady used Edelman’s skills, who registered 109 yards receiving. He used each player to the best of their ability to make a well-rounded Patriots squad that came out victorious.
If the Seahawks were able to overcome some early struggles, Marshawn Lynch would have been the MVP, hands-down, breaking the streak of only quarterbacks.
So the Super Bowl lived up to its expectations. And probably caused a few heart attacks, but that is what the sport is about. It ain’t over ’til its over. The Patriots made sure we’ll never forget it.