Perhaps New England receiver Julian Edelman summed it up best after his Patriots topped Seattle 28 to 24 behind Tom Brady's four touchdown passes: "He's Tom Brady," Edelman said. "He's the greatest quarterback on the planet."
Brady was 13 out of 15 in the fourth quarter as he led his team on drives of 68 and 64 yards to overcome the Seahawks and win his fourth Super Bowl and third MVP. When it counted, despite two early interceptions, Brady came through as he usually does.
Forget "Deflategate" in the 45 to 7 win over the overmatched Indianapolis Colts. Brady, or the Patriots locker room attendant, didn't need to deflate the footballs to win the Super Bowl. They did need a little help at the end from Pete Carroll after a circus catch by Jermaine Kearse put the ball at the New England 5 yard line and put Seattle in a position to win the game as the clock ran out. But as we all know, the Seahawks passed instead of handing off to Marshawn Lynch and the rest is history.
No matter what Carroll says, the Seahawks made the wrong decision and despite his outstanding game, Brady would have likely come out on the short end if Seattle had tried to run it in with Lynch. Who reading this doesn't think Lynch would have gained one yard in three tries?
Belichick is a great coach even though he is willing to bend or break the rules a bit to gain an edge. His teams are extremely well prepared and rarely fail in the clutch. Brady is Brady, maybe the best quarterback ever to play the game. And he shows no sign of slowing down. That's bad news for big-talking Rex Ryan and the Buffalo Bills who will get to face him next year as Brady bids for a fifth world championship.
For now, the season is over and New England, as most experts expected, found a way to win. They have the coach, like him or not, the quarterback, and a swagger that comes with knowing you're the best. Rex can talk a good game, but he hasn't done it yet. We know he can coach but can he win, and can he win without a very good quarterback? He couldn't in New York, as we all know, but maybe Buffalo will be different. Time will tell.
As the Super Bowl excitement passes, the talk around here will be about who is going to pay for the new stadium that the NFL owners say is needed in order to make small market Buffalo competitive? Or, put another way, a stadium that deliver more revenue for the owners.
Buffalo fans are competitive and will do their part to keep the owners happy and keep the Bills in town. But even with local ownership, nothing is really guaranteed down the road, especially for a franchise that hasn't made the playoffs in 15 years. Rex says it will be different next year, but there is no Tom Brady on the Bills roster and without a decent quarterback all of Ryan's bluster will not win football games in the clutch, like Brady does.
Anyway, the season is over, the Super Bowl was a great finish with a strange ending, and now the focus will be on the offseason efforts to find a quarterback and end the playoff drought. But right now, I'm ready to give football a rest and look forward to spring and baseball season.