No team in Super Bowl history had ever come back to win after facing a deficit of more than ten points. The New England Patriots found themselves in a much worse hole Sunday night, down 28-3 halfway through the third quarter. The game seemed like a blowout. The Falcons had dominated in every facet and it seemed like the Falcons were well on their way to winning their first Super Bowl in franchise history. But, Quarterback Tom Brady and the Patriots had other ideas on their way to winning their fifth Lombardi trophy.
With a mixture of quick striking offense and a resilient defense, the Patriots rattled off 18 unanswered points, leaving them down only 28-20 with 5:56 remaining in the fourth quarter. The Falcons were getting the ball with the chance to end the Patriots momentum with a score. League MVP, Falcons Quarterback Matt Ryan, led the Falcons into field goal range with the help of star Wide Receiver Julio Jones. All the Falcons needed to do was run the ball a couple of times and then kick a field goal. But, for some reason the Falcons decided to throw back to back plays that led to a sack and a holding penalty, putting the Falcons out of field goal range and giving the Patriots a chance to tie the game.
Brady Super Bowl magic ensued. Play after play, the Patriots pushed the ball down the field, including one of the most unbelievable catches in Super Bowl history by Wide Receiver Julian Edelman.
The drive was capped off by a one yard touchdown run by Running Back James White and screen pass for a two-point conversion to Danny Amendola to tie the game at 28-28. A 25 point comeback. For the first time in Super Bowl history, the game was headed to overtime.
The Patriots won the coin toss and all that was left to complete the improbable comeback was one more touchdown. At that point, it felt like there was no chance the Falcons could stop Brady and the Patriots. Right on cue, just as they had throughout the whole comeback, the Patriots marched down the field.
The greatest comeback in Super Bowl history was finished with a James White two yard touchdown run, giving the Patriots their fifth Super Bowl title, which seemed just a little sweeter than the previous four.
“This is unequivocally the sweetest,” said Patriots owner Robert Kraft about the Patriots most recent Super Bowl title.
Tom Brady took home his fourth Super Bowl MVP award after passing for a Super Bowl record 466 yards. With the Super Bowl win, Brady became the leader in Super Bowl championships for a Quarterback. Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick also became the leader in Super Bowl championships as a head coach.
Super Bowl LI will be widely remembered as one of the greatest Super Bowls and comebacks of all time. “The most incredible thing I have ever seen. Ever,” tweeted ESPN radio host, Mike Greenberg. It is fair to say many NFL fans would agree.