I shouldn’t have done it — and I didn’t learn my lesson as I did it three times throughout the NFL playoffs. I picked against Tom Brady, and paid for it, watching his new team win the Super Bowl Feb. 7 when the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Kansas City Chiefs 31-9.
Brady and the Bucs defeated Drew Brees and the Saints, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers, and Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs in the final three games of the postseason to win the Super Bowl, the second for the Bucs and seventh all time for Brady, who came to Tampa Bay this season after a dominant career in New England.
The question heading into this season was simple: Was the Patriot dynasty more about Brady or head coach Bill Belichick? We found out the answer in a big way. Brady, the GOAT (greatest of all time) went to the most losing franchise in professional sports and, with no offseason, won a Super Bowl in year one.
I try to watch the big game each year with both football and pop culture on the mind, in order to give commentary later. There are always interesting theatrics to begin the game. There were powerful messages from President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden, followed by a wonderful poem by rising superstar Amanda Gorman. If you didn’t hear it, or more importantly, her poem from inauguration day, go online and check them out. It will be a fulfilling few minutes for you that will fill your heart with hope.
Back to the game. The first half couldn’t have been worse for KC. Tommy Townsend looked like he wanted to be anywhere in the world other than having to punt for the Chiefs, as he shanked one after another in the first half. You give Tom Brady a short field and you’ll pay, as he threw for three touchdowns in the first two quarters.
Brady threw his first ever first-quarter Super Bowl TD pass to give the Bucs a lead. Of course it was to longtime teammate in New England Rob Gronkowski, who ended up catching two touchdown passes on the night. The second touchdown came after an offsides blunder from the Chiefs on what would have been a Tampa field goal attempt. Instead of 10-3, Tampa Bay led 14-3.
On the Bucs’ last scoring drive of the half, KC had two big pass interference calls that helped walk the ball to the end zone eventually for Brady and the Bucs to lead 21-6 at halftime.
The Chiefs had seven penalties for 80 yards in the first half. That’s essentially the ball game.
Grading commercials: I thought the Will Ferrell GM commercial about electric cars was great. I thought the simple Oatly commercial about (I guess) oat milk was a head scratcher. To steal a line from comedian Lewis Black, the only milk is “moo cow milk.” the rest — soy, almond, now oat, etc. — are all just juice to me.
Of course I liked the “Wayne’s World” Uber Eats commercial too. Great blast from the past there!
My favorite commercial was the Tide Jason Alexander hoodie. As a Seinfeld fan, it was perfect — one of the best commercials I’ve ever seen on a Super Bowl Sunday. I didn’t need to see anymore after that one.
The Halftime show: I’m not much for going on social media or the Internet to read the tea leaves about halftime shows, commercials or anything else. However, I’ll bet The Weeknd got hammered for his Pepsi Halftime Show. I felt it was a fairly low key show, the only part I didn’t like was when he went into the “fun house” with what I assume was a “selfie stick” in the middle of the show.
Yet I like his voice and music, so I was entertained. I’m sure I was in the minority there.
With three Brady TD passes at halftime, it was obviously who the MVP of the game was going to be if the Bucs held on to win. It wasn’t even close as 10 more third quarter points cemented the win for Brady 31-9.
Don’t know what the odds were on Mahomes not throwing a touchdown pass, but someone could have won some money that night.
The real MVP should have been the Tampa Bay defense. The game was won at the line of scrimmage, which the Bucs controlled all night. I haven’t seen Mahomes run for his life like that since he was scrambling around at Texas Tech. There were significant injuries this postseason on the Kansas City offensive line, and it showed, big time.
We’ll see what next year brings. It’s tough to make it back to a Super Bowl, but I’d love to see the matchup again. Maybe a second time would produce a better game, as this one was a snoozer. Brady and the Bucs, and Mahomes and the Chiefs, should be the favorites heading into next season, if the rosters stay primarily in tact.