Posted on February 4, 2019, by Travis Pulver
Super Bowl LIII was supposed to be one of the higher scoring games in the history of the game. At least oddsmakers thought so when they set the over/under at 56 (third highest). It wasn’t hard to see why they set it so high with the explosive potential both offenses had.
What oddsmakers didn’t count on was both defenses playing better than they had the entire season, regular season and playoffs.
In the end, the Patriots broke through for the only touchdown of the game in the fourth quarter to take a 10-3 lead. Sony Michel took it in from two yards out after Rob Gronkowsi made a 29-yard catch to get the team in position.
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New England would add a field goal on later to make the final 13-3, Patriots. With just 16 combined points, they set a new mark for the fewest points scored in a Super Bowl.
The previous record belonged to the Miami Dolphins and Washington Redskins who scored 21 back in Super Bowl VII.
After the game, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady credited both defenses for playing as well as they did (NFL.com):
“…They played so well, the Rams’ defense they played their butts off. What a great defense, they had a great plan. They made it tough on every play. We just kept fighting and finally got a touchdown. The [Patriots] defense played the best game of the year.”
The Rams defense made the first big play of the game when they intercepted Tom Brady on his first pass of the game. But it was the Patriots defense that stole the show. They forced the Rams offense to go three and out on four of their six first half drives and allowed just two first downs.
Rams quarterback Jared Goff was held to just five completions in 15 attempts in the first half and not even 50 yards of total offense. It got better in the second half for the Rams and Goff, but not enough. Goff ended the day completing just 50 percent of his passes (19-38) for 229 yards and an interception.
The interception came on the drive following the Patriots lone touchdown and followed what could have (or should have) been a game tying touchdown catch by Brandin Cooks—but he failed to secure the catch.
Tom Brady didn’t exactly have an easy night, either. He ended up completing 21 of 35 pass attempts for 262 yards and an interception. Most of his completions came when he targeted Julian Edelman and Rob Gronkowski.
Edelman caught ten of the 12 thrown his way for 141 yards. Gronkowski caught six of the seven thrown in his direction for 87 yards. For his efforts, Edelman was named the MVP.
As was expected, no one announced their intent to retire. Brady made it clear he was having too much fun even to consider it. Gronkowski stayed true to his earlier comments (that he was going to wait a week or two before deciding).
So– same time next season, Patriots?