^ What's a 'Trump'? Izzat that some sort of new STD?
Anyhoo, agree with Trout. Many mistakes were made, but the backbreaker was probably the Falc's offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan, not just calling three running plays when they had the ball on the Pats' 22 with 3 1/2 minutes to play.
It wouldn't have been an aggressive call, but it probably would've iced the game. Pats would have to burn all their remaining timeouts (2?) or let the clock get run down to the 2-minute warning. Even if all three runs get stuffed for no gain overall, 40-yd FG is a chip shot for Bryant.
Brady then has to manufacture two scores in either 3 minutes or so with no timeouts or 2 minutes with. And that's assuming the Pats even recovered the ball after the onside kick, which statistically is about a 25% chance.
Yeah, sometimes playing it safe costs you the game. But sometimes, playing aggressive does. Of course, Shanahan will be crying all the way to the SF 49ers head coaching job that's waiting for him in the offseason.
Despite the Pats' push in the final quarter, Atlanta still had the win right up to the penalty they took when NE went for the 2-pt conversion, which was the final play that actually brought them back into the game. Sure, plenty of other failures up to that point, but it was still their game to lose - that one was a freebie to New England when Atlanta really couldn't afford to be giving them out.
1. Bad offensive game management by Atlanta in the 4th quarter, as mentioned above.
2. Atlanta defense was fatigued in 4th quarter and couldn't pressure Brady as well as they had earlier.
3. NE's failure to score much in the first 3 quarters was an anomoly. When it finally turned on, Atlanta was powerless to stop them.
I had no stake in the game, but was rooting for Atlanta since they've never had a SB win, and NE has lots. And because a friend of mine is an unabashed Pats, Sox, Celtics, and whatever the NE hockey team is called fan. Naturally he's being polite and not rubbing it in this morning. Too much.
Kudos to the Patriots. Lesser teams might have given up. But the Falcons choked hard. Run the damn ball and kick the 4th Q FG and the game is over as mentioned above. Why do coaches try to get cute? First the Seahawks 2 years ago and now this. Wow.
Everything said above regarding Atlanta bad decision making... and Brady's determination to make Goodell have to hand them that trophy was stronger than Atlanta's desire to prevent it.
I'm not particularly a fan or hater of either team. I was pulling for Atlanta mainly because I've been following Julio Jones career since his time at Bama and I'd like to see him get a Super Bowl to go with his college national championship.
I still can't believe it. So many unlikely things had to happen and if one of them didn't it was game over. yet they all happened. That catch by Edleman, two successful two point conversions, not just that Atlanta called a pass play but getting a sack from it and on and on. Against all odds would be an understatement.
I think when the score is 28-3 midway through the third quarter, it is easy to start to wind down a little. Unfortunately, once you ease off, it's hard to crank it back up. Atlanta was tired at the end. Stupid penalties and an overly aggressive call that resulted in a sack and took them out of field goal range. Thing is, you can blame the offense and you can blame the defense and you can blame the coaches.
Clearly, midway through the 3rd quarter, Atlanta had shifted to a "now we just need to hold on" mentality. Problem was, NE hadn't given up yet.
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