Like them or not, the Bradys return to the Super Bowl
Vincent Davis | 1/25/2018, 6:34 p.m.
The Philadelphia Eagles will need to begin the upcoming Super Bowl by first winning the coin toss and electing to receive. They will also need to score a lot of points during the first half, put the game out of reach for the New England Patriots to prevent them from going into their locker room at halftime to make adjustments, to figure it out, leaving them with not enough time during the second half to catch up and win the game.
Of course the Eagles must also excel in defense and prevent New England from scoring, but their key to winning on Super Bowl Sunday is scoring a lot of points, early, controlling the clock and taking advantage of every possible opportunity that becomes available for them to score. It sounds simple, but is it?
The Eagles are up against the Patriots, a simple reminder, a team with quarterback Tom Brady and their brain trust, head coach Bill Belichick.
Under the Brady-Belichick era beginning in 2001, the Patriot teams have won five Super Bowls, lost two and now prepare for their eighth appearance after coming from behind to beat the Jacksonville Jaguars Sunday afternoon in the AFC Championship. This Super Bowl will be New England’s seventh consecutive championship appearance. Sunday, Brady had a bandaged throwing hand, and his top ranking receiver, Rob Gronkowski, was sidelined because of a possible concussion attained near the end of the second quarter.
“We were able to get the lead, then we didn’t make enough plays to keep the lead,” said Doug Marrone, Jacksonville’s head coach, after losing to the Pats 24-20 in Sunday’s AFC Championship game.
“We had an opportunity at the end of the game to win it, and we did not do that. Credit to New England,” acknowledged Marrone.
Yeah, credit New England. Down 20-10 early in the fourth quarter, the Jaguars couldn’t hold the lead against the defending Super Bowl champions.
Two key touchdown drives, both ending with passes from Brady to receiver Danny Amendola, and a key defensive stop by corner back Stephon Gilmore, all three remarkable, put and kept New England on top.
Gilmore thwarted a catchable Jacksonville pass that could have put the Jags in position to score six with less than two minutes remaining in the game.
Acknowledging New England’s ability, Marrone noted, “They made the plays to win the game for themselves.”