4th Quarter: Rams’ Rally Ends With Interception
Possibly impressed by New England’s landing, the Rams started racing down the sphere with a collection of lengthy performs, however after Jared Goff’s cross to Brandin Cooks simply barely fell incomplete on the aim line, Goff tried to problem the New England protection on a second consecutive play and he paid for it when Stephone Gilmore was simply capable of step in entrance of the cross for an interception.
The Patriots now have the lead and the ball with four:17 remaining within the recreation.
Bill Pennington: Tremendous anticipation by Stephon Gilmore on the interception. Goff tried to go to Cooks in the identical spot because the earlier play that almost resulted in a landing, however Gilmore was watching Goff the complete play — he all however turned his again and ignored Cooks. When Goff’s cross fluttered, Gilmore watched it into his palms the entire means.
4th Quarter: Brady to Gronk Was All This Game Needed
Tom Brady wanted to get one thing going and Rob Gronkowski was joyful to oblige. Two connections between the long run Hall of Famers led to the sport’s first landing, which was scored on a 2-yard run by Sony Michel. The Patriots now lead, 10-Three.
The drive began with Brady benefiting from blown protection by Samson Ebukam to arrange an 18-yard catch by Gronkowski. Just three performs later, Brady went to Gronk once more, this time for a 29-yard achieve that ended with the supersized tight finish sliding to a cease simply 2 yards in need of the top zone.
From there it was pretty easy as Michel has been virtually unstoppable on the aim line within the postseason and he went into the top zone simply.
Bill Pennington: The Rams desperately want a sustained offensive drive. Their protection is exhausted.
4th Quarter: Johnny Hekker Keeps Punting
The Rams managed to have a nine-play drive generate simply 23 yards on account of penalties and Johnny Hekker punted for a ninth time. This recreation has certainly been terrific for Hekker’s dad and mom, as he’s as much as 417 punting yards, however for everybody else it has been remarkably irritating to observe as neither crew has been into the crimson zone but.
At this level it’s seeming like the sport will come all the way down to a turnover producing factors quite than both offense abruptly waking up, although with both squad factors might abruptly accumulate shortly.
4th Quarter: Rams Defense Holds Strong
If you want punters, this recreation is nice.
After the Patriots picked up a primary down by the use of a defensive holding penalty, they bought a second on an entertaining 19-yard run by Sony Michel during which the rookie operating again bounced off a number of defenders earlier than being introduced down.
Michel picked up one other 6 yards on a pair of carries to shut out the third quarter, and then on the primary play of the fourth quarter, Tom Brady’s cross try to James White fell incomplete, organising one more punt.
There have been 12 punts to date.
Third Quarter: Rams Tie It Up, Three-Three
Greg Zeurlein simply barely lived as much as his Legatron nickname, tying the sport with a 53-yard subject aim that was not considered one of his signature booming kicks however did sufficient to recover from the crossbar. The recreation is now tied, Three-Three.
The Rams offense had gotten the ball again shortly because of some terrific defensive work from Marcus Peters, and they picked up a primary down with a brief throw to Josh Reynolds and a run by C.J. Anderson.
Encouraged by the conversion, Jared Goff threw deep to Brandin Cooks for a picture-perfect 16-yard achieve.
A run by Anderson went for Three yards, Goff threw an incomplete cross off Anderson’s again facet to keep away from a sack, and on Third-and-7, however Goff as soon as once more rocketed a ball downfield, connecting with Robert Woods for an 18-yard achieve.
Goff threw incomplete to Cooks in the long run zone, with Jason McCourty making a pleasant play to forestall the landing, however Goff picked up Three yards on second down with a brief cross to Anderson. On Third-and-7, Goff was completely demolished by Dont’a Hightower for a 9-yard loss that compelled the sphere aim try.
While the sack of Goff was a bit demoralizing, the younger quarterback seemed way more assured on this drive.
Third Quarter: Another Punt, however This One a Record-Breaker
The Rams had some pleasure, however not the sort they needed, narrowly avoiding a security on a drive that began on their very own 2-yard line.
The Rams bought somewhat respiratory room to start out the drive with a pair of 2-yard runs by Todd Gurley. On Third-and-6 from the Rams’ 6-yard line, Jared Goff threw wildly to his proper to keep away from a security, with the cross falling incomplete.
Johnny Hekker got here out for his eighth punt and proceeded to set a Super Bowl file with a 65-yard punt that was aided by a remarkably pleasant bounce.
Hekker is as much as Eight punts for 378 yards and has been an enormous assist in holding Los Angeles from falling additional behind on this recreation.
Third Quarter: Edelman the Lone Bright Spot for Patriots
Marcus Peters broke up a third-down cross meant for Julian Edelman, forcing New England to punt on its first offensive play of the second half.
The Patriots had began the drive on their very own Eight-yard line after a terrific punt by Johnny Hekker, however they had been capable of decide up an enormous 27-yard achieve by Edelman on a brief cross from Tom Brady. Once once more, Los Angeles took the blow in stride and continued to play tight protection.
Edelman is as much as Eight catches for 120 yards early within the third quarter, however the Patriots have introduced that their protection might be short-handed the remainder of the best way, as Patrick Chung is formally out with an arm harm.
Third Quarter: Rams Start 2nd Half With Another Stalled Drive
Todd Gurley is right here, however even that wasn’t sufficient to forestall one more Rams punt to start out the second half.
The star operating again took a second down handoff and raced by means of the New England protection for a 16-yard achieve. He adopted up that burst with two runs that mixed for five yards, however on Third-and-5 Jared Goff’s cross to Brandin Cooks was knocked to the bottom by Stephon Gilmore.
Johnny Hekker got here out but once more, punting for the seventh time right now.
Patrick Chung, the Patriots’ veteran security, needed to come out of the sport after showing to interrupt his proper arm on Gurley’s second run of the drive. He was changed by Duron Harmon.
Third Quarter: Both Offenses Need to Figure Something Out
After an virtually unwatchable first half, this recreation can simply be taken over by both crew within the second half.
For the Rams, the important thing might be discovering a solution to run the ball. Todd Gurley has been virtually solely absent with no rationalization, and he and C.J. Anderson have mixed for simply 20 yards on seven carries. That has let New England’s defenders pin their ears again and go after Jared Goff on each play. The third-year quarterback has not responded properly, finishing 5 of his 12 passes, with 18 of his 52 yards approaching a cross to Robert Woods that very possible was an incompletion.
In the second half, Goff must get again to his assured downfield throws, letting Brandin Cooks and Robert Woods break off some massive performs, and if the operating recreation can’t assist set up that room, Goff will merely should get the ball out quicker.
For the Patriots, operating the ball extra would assist, however they might enhance just by having the Rams regress to the imply on protection. Marcus Peters, Aqib Talib and Nickell Robey-Coleman have all performed nice video games, thanks partially to the Rams placing strain on Brady, however the Los Angeles protection needed to spend almost 20 minutes on the sphere within the first half, and each Peters and Robey-Coleman are vulnerable to errors if they’re challenged repeatedly.
The Rams positively qualify as extra annoyed as they failed to attain any factors regardless of producing an interception, a missed subject aim and a turnover on downs, however with how shut New England has tended to remain to their opponents in Super Bowls, the missed subject aim by Stephen Gostkowski within the first quarter might simply come again to hang-out New England.
Halftime Show Lives Up to First-Half Action
After a lackluster first half to the Super Bowl, halftime present headliner Maroon 5 took the stage — a large ‘M’ stretching 40 yards throughout the sphere — to a barrage of fireworks and flames. Unfortunately the 100 million followers at house weren’t given a respite from the sport’s mediocrity.
The spotlight of the present happened midway by means of, when a drum line and choir joined Maroon 5 lead singer Adam Levine to belt out the hit “Girls Like You.” (At house, the spotlight for a lot of was the SpongeBob SquarePants interlude.)
In concept, Travis Scott and Big Boi had been Maroon 5’s co-stars. Scott rapped “Sicko Mode” — closely censored on tv — early within the present, and Big Boi appeared late in a basic automobile, sporting a fur jacket. He sang the Outkast hit “The Way You Move” with Levine taking part in the function of Andre 3000.
In apply they solely sang one tune a bit. Levine even joined Big Boi, sadly taking part in the function of Big Boi’s Outkast co-star, Andre 3000.
It was actually the Adam Levine present, as he ran by means of all of Maroon 5’s hits: “Harder to Breathe,” “This Love,” “She Will Be Loved” and lastly ending the present with “Sugar.” Levine grew progressively much less clothed all through the 15-minute present, and as he sang the ultimate bar of “Sugar” he was shirtless, with flames crackling throughout him.
With the Super Bowl in Atlanta, the N.F.L. had a surfeit of native musicians to select from for the halftime present: Outkast, T.I., Lil Jon, Future, 2 Chainz and Migos. The checklist goes on and on.
It appears fairly telling of one thing that they selected Maroon 5. — Kevin Draper
Halftime: What Was That?
The first half was a multitude of punts and offensive ineptitude, with neither crew trying just like the powerhouses they’d been all through the playoffs.
It’s the bottom first-half rating since Super Bowl IX, when the Steelers led the Vikings, 2-Zero, on the half.
The Rams protection has performed higher than anybody might have predicted, holding the Patriots to only Three factors and repeatedly stopping promising drives with tenacious cross protection and occasional bursts of inside strain. But that also added as much as Los Angeles being down at halftime because of a horrendous effort from the Rams’ offense, with all six Rams drives ending in punts.
The Rams offense generated simply 57 yards within the first half, with Jared Goff coping with an excessive amount of strain and not having the ability to get something going, which is at the least partially a results of Los Angeles not having the ability to set up the run in any respect behind Todd Gurley and C.J. Anderson.
Tom Brady threw for 160 yards within the half, repeatedly choosing up first downs to Julian Edelman, however to this point he has been virtually solely stymied by the Rams’ protection which has clearly made some extent of delivering exhausting hits and not being discouraged regardless of the occasional Edelman outbursts.
The stars of the sport, if anybody qualifies, are Edelman, who has 93 receiving yards, and Johnny Hekker, who has punted for 267 yards.
Bill Pennington: In three postseason video games this yr, Bill Belichick’s Patriots have now given up 7 factors. That’s in opposition to some fairly first rate competitors: Chargers, Chiefs and Rams.
2nd Quarter: Patriots Turn the Ball Over on Downs
Tom Brady’s throw to Rob Gronkowski on a 4th-and-1 from the Rams’ 32-yard line led to an surprising turnover on downs, ending one other promising New England drive.
Brady had began the drive with an 11-yard cross to Julian Edelman during which Edelman ran over Aqib Talib to safe the primary down.
After a brief run by Rex Burkhead, Edelman picked up one other first down, this one with a 9-yard catch-and-run during which he was capable of get to the sting to safe an additional yard or two.
The Patriots picked up one other first down a couple of performs later because of the Rams having 12 males on the sphere, however after Brady threw incomplete on consecutive passes he discovered himself with a Third-and-10, and his cross to Patterson fell simply in need of changing when Marcus Peters knocked Patterson down simply in need of the marker.
That arrange the 4th down play during which Gronkowski couldn’t fairly get to Brady’s cross.
Bill Pennington: Jared Goff is speeding his throws, out of sync within the pocket. The Rams should take a web page out of the Patriots’ playbook and accept some shorter throws. Getting the ball out of Goff’s hand faster may yield a pair completions and assist along with his confidence and sense of timing within the pocket.
Meanwhile, in New Orleans
2nd Quarter: Five Possessions, Five Punts for Rams
The Rams, who averaged 32.9 factors a recreation this season, have had the ball 5 instances and they’ve punted 5 instances.
Todd Gurley was lastly again on the sphere, which appeared prefer it could possibly be a morale enhance for Los Angeles, and he picked up Eight yards on a pair of speeding performs to start out the drive. On Third-and-2, Jared Goff rolled out after a play-action pretend, averted one sack, however then was knocked backward for a 14-yard loss because of terrific strain from Kyle Van Noy.
Johnny Hekker has already punted for 209 yards.
2nd Quarter: Rams Find, then Lose, Some Rhythm
The Rams offense couldn’t reply the Patriots’ rating, going 23 yards on 5 performs, giving the ball again to New England with a punt.
It had briefly seemed just like the Los Angeles offense had woken up when Jared Goff discovered Robert Woods on the sideline for an 18-yard achieve that will have benefited from a nasty name, as Woods didn’t clearly get each ft down. New England held sturdy after the play, permitting a Three-yard cross, knocking C.J. Anderson again for a Three-yard loss, and then taking part in nice protection on Josh Reynolds on a third-down cross that fell incomplete.
Los Angeles has had completely no offensive rhythm on this recreation whereas their protection has been way more spectacular.
2nd Quarter: Patriots Take the Lead
Stephen Gostkowski linked on a 42-yard subject aim try, placing the Patriots up Three-Zero with 10:29 left within the first half.
The scoring drive was arrange on account of a vital third down reception by Julian Edelman — no shock there — as he turned a Third-and-1 right into a 25-yard achieve.
New England struggled after that connection, failing to transform a primary down even after Tom Brady discovered Rob Gronkowski on a brief cross, however they’d gotten shut sufficient for Gostkowski to hit pretty simply, making up for his miss earlier within the recreation.
2nd Quarter: Offenses Look Flat
The groups punted on consecutive drives, however the Rams made a defensive assertion on their final cease of the primary quarter, placing some actual strain on Tom Brady whereas additionally coping with some lengthy good points from New England’s receivers.
The quarter closed in a scoreless tie, with neither crew threatening past Stephen Gostkowski’s missed subject aim try, however Los Angeles needs to be inspired after John Franklin-Myers produced a strip-sack, Marcus Peters very almost intercepted a cross, and Aaron Donald compelled an incompletion as he whipped Brady to the bottom, a play that led to New England’s first punt.
The Rams have but to do something on offense on this recreation, however they’ve an interception, they’re attending to Brady, and they’ve endured a couple of of Julian Edelman’s signature third-down conversions with out giving up a rating.
Bill Pennington: The Patriots ran twice as many performs because the Rams within the first quarter. Rams had just one first down and had been Zero-for-Three on third down. The Rams protection is taking part in with a whole lot of power and hearth however the offense seems lifeless and unsure.
1st Quarter: Rare Miss for Patriots’ Stephen Gostkowski
New England had an opportunity to go up Three-Zero however Stephen Gostkowski missed wide-left on a 46-yard subject aim try.
The Patriots had began the drive on their very own 12-yard line, however bought into their typical rhythm, executing a collection of quick performs that constantly moved the chains. The Rams twice had large defensive alternatives slip away from them, as soon as when Julian Edelman ripped off an 11-yard catch-and-run on Third-and-9, and as soon as when Nickell Robey Coleman’s crushing hit of Rex Burkhead on a 2nd-and-14 was decided to be a defenseless receiver violation and an computerized first down.
A pleasant play-action pretend following the penalty led to a 19-yard cross to Rob Gronkowski, but it surely was adopted by a run try by Rex Burkhead that went for two yard, a deep cross try to Chris Hogan that fell incomplete in the long run zone, and a run by James White that went for Three, resulting in Gostkowski’s ill-fated subject aim try.
As a results of what seemed to be communication points, New England was compelled to make use of two of its timeouts on this drive.
Bill Pennington: The Patriots haven’t scored but when the Rams secondary doesn’t transfer nearer to the road of scrimmage and tighten up its protection, it’s going to be a protracted day for them. Brady will take these throws beneath all day lengthy.
Gostkowski had not missed a kick in his final 5 video games together with the playoffs. But he did miss 5 of 32 subject aim makes an attempt within the common season and one additional level attempt.
1st Quarter: Brady’s First Pass Intercepted, however Rams Go Nowhere
The Patriots had been driving down the sphere pretty simply, choosing up a pair of first downs on three consecutive runs, however Nickell Robey-Coleman, the defensive again who dedicated the controversial cross interference within the N.F.C. championship, was capable of tip away a cross try to Chris Hogan, resulting in an interception by Cory Littleton. Absolutely an enormous turnover on a drive the place the Patriots appeared to be marching their solution to a primary quarter rating.
The Rams managed simply two yards on their first two offensive performs, with a 2-yard run by Todd Gurley and an incomplete cross by Jared Goff. On Third-and-Eight, Goff tried to hit Josh Reynolds on a crossing route however the crew’s third large receiver couldn’t deal with the cross and it fell incomplete, resulting in a Johnny Hekker punt.
Patriots Will Start With the Ball
As the stadium’s roof slowly closed, the captains for each groups got here out for the coin toss. New England referred to as heads, and misplaced the toss. The Rams deferred and the Patriots will obtain the ball to start out the sport.
Gladys Knight Gets Things Started
As Gladys Knight completed a dramatic rendition of the nationwide anthem, a formation of jets did a flyover at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, benefiting from the stadium’s retractable roof being open. There had been no protests instantly obvious by any performers or gamers.
There had been some hypothesis in latest weeks that Knight may interact in some type of protest in help of Colin Kaepernick, the previous N.F.L. quarterback who has not performed within the N.F.L. within the final two years after beginning a protest of police violence that impressed a nationwide debate.
Kaepernick’s legal professional, Mark Geragos, had mentioned that artists collaborating within the recreation had been “crossing an intellectual picket line,” however Knight believed her efficiency could possibly be a second of unity quite than division.
“Once we get into that love thing, it all comes together and goes wherever and we end up clapping and having a good time,” she mentioned.
Rams vs. Patriots: The Top Story Lines
This would be the Patriots’ 11th Super Bowl look and ninth of the Bill Belichick/Tom Brady period. No different crew has appeared in additional than eight. If Brady had been to win, incomes his sixth Super Bowl ring, he would break a tie with Charles Haley, the Hall of Fame defensive finish, for many by a person participant. If you embody the pre-Super Bowl period, nevertheless, New England nonetheless has a methods to go to catch as much as the Green Bay Packers. Green Bay has received 13 titles in 16 championship recreation appearances.
The Rams have top-of-the-line combos of kicker and punter in Super Bowl historical past. Johnny Hekker, the crew’s punter, is taken into account the grasp of the artwork kind, with a capability to succeed on deep kicks, excessive kicks, directional kicks and roughly the rest you possibly can think about. He is also a official risk within the passing recreation, having accomplished 11 of 19 profession passes for 156 yards and a landing on pretend punts. Greg Zeurlein, in the meantime, has such a robust proper leg that it earned him two nicknames: Greg the Leg and Legatron. He has made 65 of his 71 subject aim makes an attempt over the past two seasons — 10 of 13 from 50 or extra yards — and he received the N.F.C. championship recreation with a 57-yarder that simply would have transformed from 65 or extra yards. Here’s a look at how Hekker has become one of the most valuable players in the N.F.L.