Patriots vs. Rams: A Super Bowl Flashback

0

Quarterback Tom Brady and the New England Patriots will face a flash from the past, from Super Bowl XXXVI against the Saint Louis Rams, and now the Los Angeles Rams in Super Bowl LIII.

In 2002, Brady won his first championship with the Patriots against the Rams, 20-17. Little did we know, this was the start of an incredible dynasty.

Head Coach Bill Belichick has kept this Patriots’ well-oiled system for nearly two decades, consistently winning regular season and playoff games, year after year. Belichick and his Pats have the longest winning streak in the NFL history with 21 straight regular and postseason wins, from 2003-2004.

The Brady/Belichick era is something to be awed at, and to be celebrated, because we may never see anything this special again.

This might be one of the hardest Super Bowl matchups this Patriots squad will ever face, for the Rams, are one of the best teams in the league by far. Being one of the first teams to be undefeated this season, Rams QB Jared Goff has had an incredible year leading his team to 13 wins and just 3 losses.

Todd Gurley, 24, arguably has been the best running back all-season long, and if it weren’t for his minor ankle injury early in the playoffs, Gurley would be on fire running into the championship. Now that he is reportedly healthy, he will look to strive back to MVP form and run all over the Patriots.

The Rams have been impressed with veteran running back CJ Anderson, who has been filling in for Gurley, just two games into the playoffs after being acquired from free agency. Gurley will look to take over possessions again, unless head Coach Sean McVay has plans otherwise.

I think it will be important to give Gurley a majority of the touches, for McVay, might try and keep another balanced rushing attack. While this seem like a sensible plan, it will be more vital for Gurley to get momentum.

There are so many factors that go into this championship game, the question will be which will be one of those factors, that actually affect the outcome.

Will the Rams actually be able to take down the Patriots?

Photo by Keith Allison [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

How Super Bowl LI can be the greatest of all-time

0

The Patriots-Falcons Heavyweight has the potential to be one of the greatest championships in not just the league, but in all of sports. The No. 1 defense-vs.-No. 1 offense matchup in this year’s Super Bowl gives the possibility of becoming one of the most entertaining title games of all-time.

The hype from Super Bowl LI is reminiscent to the College Football Playoff Championship, the star-studded matchup: No. 1 Alabama and No. 2 Clemson, featured the best defenses as well as offenses in the league. The CFP Championship certainly had lived up to the hype with going down to the wire, proving that they were the two best teams in the league.

The football world was spoiled with an incredible rematch and one of the greatest title games in the history of sports, will we be blessed with another crowd-pleaser?

Super Bowl LI also has implications that are similar of the Alabama-Clemson matchup. Winning for New England means more than just glory, it means greatness.

The Patriots’ seventh Super Bowl appearance reflects Alabama’s dominant College Football Playoff run under the Nick Saban, with their fifth BCS title appearance in since 2009.

If the Falcons win, it would mean an entirety of things – more than just satisfaction or praise, rather with honor. For many, it would be well deserved if the Atlanta defeats all odds in defeating England, as they should.

Whether fans are rooting for Matt Ryan and company because they are underdogs, or they just simply hate the Patriots, this showdown has significances that could be destined for either team. The underdog position could work in favor for Atlanta, being a sleeper with the best offense in the league might not be so bad.

Can Matt Ryan pull off a Deshaun Watson-like performance this Sunday?

The Patriots and Falcons matchup well with their high-artillery of offensive/defensive weapons. It will hard to see that many mismatches, even with Julio Jones on the field, because New England has some of the best defensive backs in the NFL.

The Patriots defense will definitely have double coverage on Julio Jones, hell maybe even triple-team coverage. The next question is if New England will be able to slow him down, and if they do, Sanu and Gabriel will have step it up.

The good news for Atlanta is, if Julio Jones is completely blanketed, they will look to their high-flying running backs for help. All season long, New England has yet to face a two-running back set in the backfield like the Falcons have.

If the Falcons utilize the talents of Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman in someway, shape or form, they will be very hard to stop. Tom Brady will have to play ‘catch up’ in order to keep up with Atlanta’s high-flying pace.

I suspect Matt Ryan will have a good game along with Julio Jones, but Atlanta’s running back duo will be the X-factor of Super Bowl LI.

Photo by Keith Allison from Baltimore, USA (Tom Brady) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons