But, indeed, the Patriots are winning the Super Bowl.
Depending on one’s pledged allegiance, it was unbelievable or unbearable, incredible or incredulous, prodigious or preposterous.
I am inclined to follow the lead of a small-town newspaper sports writer who covered the local high school’s last-second basketball victory over the team’s most hated rival in the state playoffs.
“The win last night is indescribable.’’
Then he proceeded to utilize 1,234 words, and a half dozen exclamation marks, to describe the event.
The Patriots’ 34-28 triumph over the Falcons is describable, but my vocabulary is too inadequate to do it well.
So I’ll borrow a common cellphone text message abbreviation, which actually is a throwback from a hand-written letter sent to Winston Churchill in 1917 by Admiral John Arbuthnot Fisher, commander of the British fleet.
That describes what the Patriots did to the Falcons in the second half of Sunday night’s game.
But what does this say about Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots.
Thirty-one Super Bowl records were tied or set by the Brady Bunch. For instance, it was the greatest comeback in the NFL championship’s history.
From Feb. 3, 2002, to Feb. 5, 2017, the Patriots, with Belichick and Brady and a bunch of moveable parts, have played in seven Super Bowls, winning five.
The achievement qualifies as a dynasty, not in the tradition of the Mings, who ruled in China from 1368-1644), or in pro sports, the Canadiens winning five consecutive Stanley Cups, The 1936-51 Yankees winning the World Series 11 times (nine with Joe DiMaggio, who missed two while serving in World War II, the Steelers winning four Super Bowls in six seasons and, the best of all, the Celtics’ success – 16 NBA titles in 30 seasons.
Belichick now has won 26 post-season games – more than most NFL teams in their franchise’s history – and Brady is a victory behind.
After the miraculous rally against the Falcons, it was reported by Brady wants to play another three to five years. It’s certainly possible that he and Belichick could win three to five addition championships together. Maybe they’ll go out together. Perhaps they should go into the Pro Football Hall of Fame together.
The Broncos believe they’ve had a good run – four Super Bowls since the 1997 season, and three championship – but they are no match, and neither is any other NFL team, for the Patriots in the new millennium. (The Broncos did defeat the Patriots in two AFC Championships.)
In fact, no other North American pro sports franchise has five victories in this century. The San Antonio Spurs, with coach Greg Popovich have four NBA championships from 2003-2014. (They also won another in 1999.)
It seemed on Sunday, though, that the Patriots would be the Pathetics – after they fell behind 21-0 and 28-3. But Belichick, Brady and the rest were not going to throw a pity party.
On the other side, the Falcons must have been confident they would win their first Super Bowl with such an “”OMG’’ advantage – 28-3 at one juncture and 28-9 after three quarters.
But the Patriots came back, and the Falcons fell back, producing the worst collapse ever in the Super Bowl.
Kyle Shanahan, of the Football Shanahans, was a genius in the first half. At intermission, the Broncos must have been wondering if they hired the wrong coach, and the 49ers, who officially are about to name Shanahan as their coach, must have been wanting to thank the Broncos.
Then, Shanahan became "The Dunce" rather than "The Man Who Would Be King."
When the Falcons should have been running the football on third-and-one, or setting themselves up for a field goal that would have put the game out of reach, he was making calls from the coach’s box upstairs that will be discussed for a year. Sort of like the Seahawks running the ball at the goal two years ago when the Patriots intercepted for the triumph. And quarterback Matt Ryan, selected as the league’s MVP on Saturday night, was sacked, fumbled and became the least valuable quarterback in the Super Bowl. Guess who won MVP?
The better team ultimately won.
The Patriots are the league’s ultimate team again.