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Bill Belichick and the Patriots came to the Super
29-06-2019, 04:05 AM
Příspěvek: #1
Bill Belichick and the Patriots came to the Super
ATLANTA (AP) — Graying but still gritty Chris Lindstrom Jersey , Bowl intending to stave off, for at least one more game, the inevitable onslaught of the NFL’s future.Job well done.Pro football never looked flatter, older and more stuck in the days of the VCR than it did Sunday.Article continues below ...In a Super Bowl only New England could love, the Patriots won their sixth title by lumbering their way to a 13-3 victory over the Los Angeles Rams — that young, brash, high-flying team with the 33-year-old coach and the 24-year-old quarterback who were, we thought, changing football before our very eyes.If only we could’ve kept them open.Among the Super Bowl records set: Fewest points by both teams (16); fewest points by the winning team (13); fewest combined points through three quarters (6); most consecutive drives ending with a punt (8 by the Rams); longest punt (65 yards).The halftime show with Maroon 5 offered no relief — roundly ripped, including by an Associated Press reviewer who called it “Empty. Boring. Basic. Sleepy.”He could have said the same about the game. But give credit where it’s due.The defense designed by Belichick turned Rams quarterback Jared Goff into a jittery mess. He completed 19 of 38 passes for 229 yards, with an assortment of rushed throws, misread coverages and, in the tiny windows in which LA showed any sign of life, a pair of terrible passes.One, trailing 3-0 in the third quarter, was late and high to wide-open Brandin Cooks in the end zone; the other, trailing 10-3 with 4:17 left in the fourth quarter, was high under pressure for an easy interception by Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore that essentially ended the game.“I know I definitely have a lot to learn from this one,” said Rams coach Sean McVay http://www.falconsauthorizedshops.com/au...ary-jersey , who, at 33, is exactly half the age of Belichick.McVay has been the flavor of the month in the copycat NFL. Other teams have hired away three of his assistant coaches over the last two years, as the league tries to catch up with his newfangled offense that cracked 30 points in 13 games this season.On Sunday, it managed one 53-yard field goal from Greg Zuerlein and didn’t take a snap inside the New England 20.Gilmore’s interception came minutes after Brady engineered the game’s lone touchdown drive.It was five plays and included four straight completions: 18 yards to Rob Gronkowski, 13 yards to Julian Edelman, seven yards to backup running back Rex Burkhead, then a 29-yard teardrop placed perfectly into the arms of Gronkowski, who was double-covered. Sony Michel ran it in from 2 yards for the touchdown with 7 minutes left.“We couldn’t get points on the board for one reason or another,” Brady said, “but in the end, it feels a lot better than last year, when we did get some points on the board.”Last year, the Patriots fell 41-33 to Philly in a back-and-forth thriller that essentially featured one good defensive play: a sack and strip on Brady by Eagles defensive end Brandon Graham with the clock running down.The year before, the Patriots scored 31 points in the second half and overtime for a riveting 34-28 comeback win over Atlanta and title No. 5.Then, this.New England’s road to a sixth Lombardi Trophy — tied with Pittsburgh for the most — was never easy this season. The Patriots lost five times, didn’t have home-field advantage through the playoffs and, after every loss, were beset by questions over whether the 41-year-old Brady and his 66-year-old coach might be winding down.Through it all, though Kendall Sheffield Jersey , they could score. New England averaged 27.2 points a game. And in the run through the playoffs, the offense scored 10 touchdowns and Brady barely got touched, and never got sacked.They were not clicking like that Sunday at the $1.5 billion Mercedes-Benz Stadium, where 70,081 fans — most of them cheering for New England — watched the game.Other than Edelman, whose 10 catches for 141 yards won him MVP honors and made him look like a combination of Michael Irvin and Jerry Rice considering everything happening around him, the Patriots were out of sync.Brady’s first pass got intercepted. He went 21 for 35 for 262 yards and a passer rating of 71.4 — more than 26 points lower than he averaged this season.New England outgained Los Angeles 195-57 in the first half, but settled for two field goal attempts — one miss and one make — for a 3-0 lead at the break.It was 3-3 heading into the fourth quarter — the fewest points through the first 45 minutes of any playoff game since a 1980 barnburner between the Bucs and Rams that LA won 9-0.Maybe the biggest irony of all: The New England dynasty’s five previous Super Bowl victories came by 3, 3, 3, 4 and 6. Two were decided on the last play. The other three came down to the final minutes.Compared to that, this was a veritable runaway.On a day when New England held LA running back Todd Gurley to 35 yards, when LA couldn’t muster a drive longer than five plays for nearly three quarters, and when LA’s Johnny Hekker (eight punts, 46.3 yard average) was his team’s most effective player, a 10-point lead at the end felt like a million.“It’s a beautiful thing, man,” said New England cornerback Jason McCourty.And a game only the Patriots could love. INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Defensive lineman Darryl Johnson sees hope for small-school players all around the NFL.One of his former teammates at North Carolina A&T, running back Tarik Cohen, plays for the Chicago Bears. Another ex-college teammate http://www.falconsauthorizedshops.com/au...sky-jersey , offensive lineman Brandon Parker, landed with the Oakland Raiders. Cornerback Tony McRae, a third A&T alum, is with the Cincinnati Bengals and Indianapolis Colts linebacker Darius Leonard, another Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference alum, is the league’s newest defensive rookie of the year.Johnson knows the names, stories and backgrounds and it’s convinced him that he can be the next guy on the list.“He’s a guy from an HBCU (Historically Black College and University), who put in a lot of hard work and that’s what I do,” Johnson said Saturday when asked about Leonard. “He’s a relentless effort guy and I’m the same way.”Making it to the NFL’s annual scouting combine in Indianapolis could help pro scouts determine if they see the same similarities.While Johnson is not the biggest name in a crowded class of talented pass-rushing ends and fast linebackers and he’s not one of the enormous run stuffers, he certainly presents an intriguing profile.At 6-foot-6, 253 pounds, Johnson is long and lean, like Leonard.Johnson recorded 16 1/2 sacks over the past two seasons, earning first-team all-conference honors both years and last year’s MEAC defensive player of the year award — which Leonard took in2016 and 2017.Like Leonard, Johnson relies on speed to play sideline to sideline and, like Leonard, Johnson describes himself an underdog with something to prove.“Coming from a HBCU, coming out early, I feel like I’m making a statement for all the HBCUs so they won’t sleep on black college football,” said Johnson Qadree Ollison Jersey , a redshirt junior who gave up his final year of eligibility to enter the draft. “A lot of legends played back college football.”Where exactly Johnson fits into this year’s draft is still to be determined.But his much is clear: Passing on small-school college players comes with its own perils.Two of the NFL’s greatest players — the late Walter Payton and Jerry Rice — attended HBCUs in Mississippi. Joe Flacco led the Baltimore Ravens to a Super Bowl title after playing at Delaware. Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz was taken No. 2 overall after competing for Football Championship Subdivision power North Dakota State and receivers Tyreek Hill and Adam Thielen played Division II at West Alabama and Minnesota State, before winning jobs with the Kansas City Chiefs and Minnesota Vikings.This year’s draft class should be no exception.Pass-rushing specialist Oshane Ximines became the first Old Dominion player to make the Senior Bowl, could be the first player drafted from the Virginia school and if things go well between now and April, he could be a first-round pick.Ximines was a late bloomer. He didn’t start playing football until he was a high school freshman then moved from safety to the defensive line after growing six inches and adding 30 pounds between his freshman and sophomore seasons.“My parents knew nothing about football,” Ximines said. “They’re from Jamaica so they leaned mostly toward soccer. But when I told my mom I got my first scholarship offer, she was like ‘They offer scholarships for that?'”Ximines didn’t just take the scholarship he made the most of his opportunity after redshirting his first year on campus. He finished his career with 33 sacks, 51 1/2 tackles for loss and 11 forced fumbles — all school records — and the kind of moniker coaches and general managers love to hear.“We say he’s the ultimate Monarch,” said Old Dominion receiver Travis Fulgham who is also at the combine. “He’s a perfect student-athlete. He’s always making big plays for us. He’s a leader on and off the field.”Then there’s defensive lineman John Cominsky, an Ohio native who played quarterback in high school and needed a recommendation just to get a shot at playing for the University of Charleston.Now, after turning heads there, he’s on the verge of becoming the first draftee from that Division II school.“I think you just have to dominate at your level and make enough noise,” Cominsky said. “You can do it wherever you play. You just have to make some plays.”And after hearing the advice of Cohen and Parker and watching McRae and Leonard succeed, Johnson believes this is his chance to make a splash.“Everybody in the MEAC is fast,” Johnson said. “We’re not the biggest guys, but we run to the ball and I think that helps us as the league changes.”
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