Falcons and Patriots face off in Super Bowl LI


Jake Brown, Sports Editor

For the first time in the Super Bowl since Super Bowl XLVIII between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos, the number one defense, The New England Patriots, face off against the number one offense, the Atlanta Falcons. The Falcons beat the Seahawks and the Green Bay Packers pretty handily at home in the playoffs, with quarterback Matt Ryan and wide receiver Julio Jones leading the way. Up north, the Patriots beat the Houston Texans and the Pittsburgh Steelers, with quarterback Tom Brady and running back Legarrette Blount tearing up the gridiron.


The Patriots have become the New York Yankees of football ever since Brady won his first Super Bowl back in 2002 against the St. Louis Rams. Brady has won five Super Bowls and two Super Bowl MVPs. He has only lost to the New York Giants in the Super Bowl. They have quickly become one of the most disliked teams in the NFL right now because of their success.


This is Ryan’s first Super Bowl appearance. He has been underrated his entire career until finally taking the spotlight from his division rival quarterbacks, the Panthers’ Cam Newton and the Saints’ Drew Brees. Ryan  has actually had a better career record than Brees since Ryan’s debut in 2008, and better record than Newton since Newton’s debut in 2011. Ryan has only had one losing record in his career, going 6-10 in 2014, and has left that season in the past, going 11-5 this year, and claiming the second seed in the NFC.


Many fans, though, aren’t necessarily rooting for the Falcons as much as they are hoping for the Patriots to lose. The Patriots have created some controversy over the past few years, leading to bad press, such as in the Spygate and Deflategate scandals, as well as liberals feeling angry that Brady supported president Trump in the recent election. The Falcons are the underdog though, as we do not know how the Falcons will do in their first Super Bowl since Super Bowl XXXIII, when they lost to Hall of Famer John Elway’s Denver Broncos. Although the Falcons have never been to the Super Bowl in the Matt Ryan era, they have succeeded this year, never having a close game in this year’s playoffs, beating the Seahawks, 36-20 and the Packers, 44-21. That’s a 80-41 score difference.


For fair weather fans, the halftime show will star Lady Gaga. Gaga released her new album last year with her lead single “Perfect Illusion.” Many question the decision of having Gaga do the halftime show because of her relevancy, and being chosen over pop superstar Adele.
The Super Bowl will start at 6:30 EST on FOX. The game is in Houston, Texas, in NRG Stadium.