You know how it is whenever some major sporting event happens and some dedicated fans are waiting if some momentous record or statistic is achieved or broken. Note that it’s February, which means the NFL Super Bowl, this year being the 52nd or LII. Last 2017, Super Bowl LI reportedly shatter no less than 30 team and individual records, such as the biggest comeback win in the finals’ history and being the first Super Bowl to go into overtime for a win. This year’s game has one prominent highlight: a team’s first ever championship win after their last appearance, 2004.
As CNN tells it, the Philadelphia Eagles frustrated the New England Patriots’ attempt to bring up their total Super Bowl victory tally and tie with frontrunners the Pittsburgh Steelers. On Sunday, February 4 in the US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, the Eagles had their long-awaited payback against the Patriots, who had humbled them back in 1992’s Super Bowl XXVI, the last NFL Finals appearance by Philadelphia before this momentous day for them. Conversely, the Patriots find themselves with an ignominious achievement by tying the Denver Broncos with the most defeats from appearing at the Super Bowl, with five in all.
The first quarter saw the Eagles start strong, leading 9 against the Patriots’ 3. It was during the second quarter that Philadelphia’s QB Nick Foles suddenly found himself on the hero’s spotlight after his impressive feat of throwing for and then catching a touchdown. It was the first time that had happened in NFL history and helped the Eagles secure their lead 22-12 (following Jake Elliot’s extra point) going into halftime. Despite a rally by the Patriots to lead 33-32 by the end of the third quarter, Philadelphia was not going to be denied now. They finished strong at 41-33.
New England’s star Tom Brady, the MVP in the last Super Bowl, was frank about how his team felt. “Losing sucks,” he said. “That’s part of it. You try to win and sometimes you lose. That’s the way it goes.” Their head coach Bill Belichick in turn tipped his hat to his Philadelphia counterpart Doug Pederson. “They played a competitive game,” notes Belichick. “In the end, we just couldn’t quite make enough plays, and that was all on me. Disappointing, but I’m proud of the way our team competed.” At least the Patriots set a record 10 Super Bowl appearances.
For his part, Nick Foles was named MVP of Super Bowl LII for his remarkable “Philly Special” maneuver as above. Not bad for the 29-year-old Philadelphia returnee, who had once contemplated retiring from the NFL in 2016 after the LA Rams released him.
Photo courtesy of New Times