Last updated on June 23rd, 2015 at 02:54 pm
In one of the most exciting Super Bowls ever, the New England Patriots defeated the Seattle Seahawks 28-24 to win Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale, Arizona. It is the fourth championship for the franchise, the fourth for quarterback Tom Brady tying him with Terry Bradshaw and Joe Montana for the most all-time, and the fourth for Coach Bill Belichick tying him with Chuck Noll for the most in history.
The first quarter was all about these two teams sizing each other up and while Brady was very sharp overall, a misread and a poor throw was intercepted by Jeremy Lane at the goal line, keeping the game 0-0 into the second. Brady found Brandon LaFell for the game’s first touchdown at the 9:47 mark. Then the surprises began.
CFL refugee Chris Matthews, who was working at Foot Locker the night the season began, showed up playing hardball with far more clarity than his political commentator namesake. He sparked the Seahawks offense with the initial catches of his career, leading to a Marshawn Lynch touchdown from the ‘three’ to tie the game 7-7 with 2:16 left.
Brady, a master of the two-minute drill, found Rob Gronkowski on a beautiful 22-yard touchdown exploiting a mismatch. New England led 14-7 with :31 remaining. Seattle was cautious coming back, but when Robert Turbin burst through for 19, the Seahawks got moving. Next scrambled QB Russell Wilson for 17. Then Wilson hit Ricardo Lockette for 21 with a facemask penalty attached. With :06 and from the 11, Wilson took a quick shot and found Matthews to tie the game at 14.
After Katy Perry electrified, sharks mystified, Lenny Kravitz intensified, and Missy Elliott stupefied halftime, the Seahawks kept rolling. Taking the kickoff, the Seahawks drove to the Patriots’ ‘eight’ where Lynch was stopped on 3rd-and-one by Rob Ninkovich and a missed block. A field goal made it 17-14 Seattle then as the defense stood tall again with a Bobby Wagner interception. The Seahawks marched 50 yards in six plays capped by a Wilson-to-Doug Baldwin connection from the ‘three’ to put the champs up by 10.
Seattle was banking that their defense could not be driven on twice to beat them. They went conservative and lost their rhythm offensively. The game swung on a 3rd-and-14. Brady scrambled out of the pocket and hit Julian Edelman over the middle for a first down. Once Brady hit Danny Amendola from the ‘four,’ it was 24-21 with 7:55 remaining.
Another three-and-out set up Brady, and the master went eight-for-eight on this drive. His pass to Edelman from the ‘three’ giving New England the 28-24 advantage with 2:02 left. The Seahawks drove, Wilson trying to prove to the doubters he could win a championship and not simply preside over one, and then the fateful call that changed it all—2nd-and-goal from the ‘one.’ The infamous pass from Wilson was intercepted by Malcolm Butler, and then ballgame.
Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll took responsibility for the decision, definitely one of the worst ever on the surface. But consider Lynch had already been stopped on 3rd-and-one earlier and on goal-to-go situations. Needing one yard this season, Lynch had been stopped four out of five instances. Still the odds of success seem higher feeding Lynch than throwing over the middle.
Brady ended 37-of-50, 328 yards, four touchdowns and two interceptions in what was a MVP performance. The 37 completions set a Super Bowl record. His four TD passes gives him a record 13 for his career, and his third MVP ties the all-time mark.