By Jack Vavasour
When considering the greatest sportsmen of all time, there is no question that Tom Brady and the way he has built up the New England Patriot dynasty, will be mentioned in the discussion.
Brady, at the age of 41, won his record breaking sixth Super Bowl. This means that Brady, as an individual, has more Super Bowl wins than any team ever, with the Pittsburgh Steelers also on six. This is a phenomenal achievement and one that is unlikely to ever be matched.
As Super Bowl LIII rolled around, many questioned whether Brady and his receiving corps would be good enough to out manoeuvre the impressive Los Angeles Rams.
The Mercedes-Benz stadium in Atlanta hosted the spectacle. Many were expecting a huge score with both sides ranking amongst the leagues best offensives teams. In the end, defence was the word of the day as play after play was disrupted and broken up by countless outstanding defensive plays.
The final score was the lowest in Super Bowl history, leading to the question about how an offensive player managed to come away with the prestigious MVP award. Admittedly, Julian Edelman was phenomenal. He changed the game with several catches but more importantly, his yards after the catch were unmatched.
Brady, as always, looked calm and kept control over the game, eventually closing it off with a precise pass to tight end Rob Gronkowski allowing rookie running back Sony Michel to find the end zone.
His opposite number, Jared Goff, looked the opposite. All game he struggled to connect with his extremely talented set of wide receivers who, for most of the season, dominated opposing teams secondaries.
As well, the New England run defence smothered the excellent pairing of Todd Gurley and C.J. Anderson who only mustered 55 rushing yards for the game. The 24-year old did have a slight resurgence in the second half finding success targeting former Patriot receiver Brandin Cooks. But, an interception by cornerback Stephon Gilmore late in the fourth-quarter sealed the victory for the Patriots.
Eventually, following a half-time show from Maroon 5 which divided opinion to say the least, the Patriots came out on top in a 13-3 victory. Bill Belichick and Tom Brady had earned the Patriots their 6th title, and despite the win, will return with a fresh determination to challenge for yet another Super Bowl. If they reach it again, then there is no-one who would be willing to bet against them adding to their collection of rings.
On the losing side, this will be a huge learning curve. The Rams are at the opposite end of the career spectrum with coach Sean McVay only 33 years of age and Jared Goff is still very new to the National League Football environment.
Having performed so well during the regular season, it was a shame to see one of the leagues most electric offensive crumble, but the sky is the limit for this Rams side. They have so much talent both offensively and defensively, and a promising young coach who unfortunately came up against a superior other that had significantly more experience in play-off football.
The Rams need to take the positives from their impressive 13-3 season, and also their defensive efforts to restrict a high-octane Patriot offence to just 13 points. As long as they can keep the squad together and make the necessary additions then there is no reason as to why they won’t be challenging for Super Bowl glory once again.