Two teams. One game. It all comes down to one winner.
The banter before the game is played gives the feeling one team is the greatest of all time, the game is practically over because the most celebrated quarterback and coach combination are impossible to pick against and the opposing team does not have a quarterback when in actuality they do.
Here are my preview and prediction.
Super Bowl LII will feature the No. 1 seed in each conference – the NFC champion Eagles against the AFC champion Patriots. It also marks a rematch of Super Bowl XXXIX when New England defeated Philadelphia 24-21 on February 6, 2005, in Jacksonville. Patriots are favored to win; Eagles are the underdog.
Philadelphia advanced to the Super Bowl for the third time in franchise history (1980 and 2004), and the Eagles are looking for the team’s first Super Bowl title.
“It’s a tremendous feeling to be going to the Super Bowl,” says head coach Doug Pederson. “I love coaching this football team. I love coaching these players. The thing about this team is that despite all the adversity that surrounds the team, these guys don’t listen to that. I don’t listen to that. They come to work and practice hard every day. They love being around each other. One of our goals was to be the NFC champions and represent the NFC in the Super Bowl. And now we’ve got our work cut out for us. We’re going to the Super Bowl, and we still have some unfinished business ahead of us.”
Eagles quarterback Nick Foles, who has taken over for injured Pro Bowl quarterback Carson Wentz, is only the fourth quarterback in the Super Bowl era to win two postseason games after making three or fewer starts in the regular season. The other three quarterbacks to accomplish the feat are Doug Williams (1987 Redskins), Jeff Hostetler (1990 Giants) and Frank Reich (1992 Bills). Reich currently serves as Philadelphia’s offensive coordinator. Foles will face the most laborious task now of his playing career, defeating arguably the greatest quarterback in NFL history.
Eagles strategy to win: Defense
Defensive coordinator, Jim Schwartz needs to key in on the short yardage passes moreover let his defensive line, who has been the NFL best all season disrupt the quarterback of the New England Patriots Tom Brady. No need to blitz, let the four-man front on the line do its job and focus more on the secondary help. Malcolm Jenkins can be a valuable blitzer, but his hands will be tied up covering Rob Gronkowski. The Eagles enjoy playing zone, the gray area will be the one-on-one matchups on the perimeter where Brady will be salivating with Ronald Darby at right corner and Jalen Mills at left corner.
The Patriots advanced to their NFL-record 10th Super Bowl by defeating Jacksonville 24-20 in the AFC Championship Game. New England, who won Super Bowl LI, is looking to repeat as Super Bowl champions for the second time in franchise history (XXXVIII and XXXIX).
Patriots head coach Bill Belichick and Brady will be making their eighth Super Bowl appearance together, the most NFL title games for any head coach and starting quarterback duo in league history. Belichick and Brady have won five Super Bowls together, the most by a head coach and starting quarterback combination.
“You cherish these moments and opportunities,” says Brady. “I know we’ve had quite a few of them, which we’ve been very blessed to do. It’s just been an unbelievable run and I think everyone should be really proud of what we’ve accomplished. I’m proud of our team. It’s been a great year and it would be really great if we can take care of business in the next game.”
Brady, who is making his NFL-record eighth career Super Bowl start, is the only starting quarterback in league history to win five Super Bowls and the only player ever to be named Super Bowl MVP four times (XXXVI, XXXVIII, XLIX, and LI).
Brady, who set a Super Bowl record with 466 passing yards last year, is the all-time leader in Super Bowl passing yards (2,071), completions (207), passing attempts (309) and touchdown passes (15). He is also the NFL postseason leader in wins by a starting quarterback (27), completions (892), passing attempts (1,416), passing yards (9,721) and touchdown passes (68). The numbers seem annoying, but the fact that he has maybe the best tight end ever playing in Super Bowl LII will only help add to the numbers.
Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski is ready to roll after being cleared from concussion protocol. Gronkowski was diagnosed with a concussion in the AFC Championship Game after Jaguars safety Barry Church was defending a pass in the tight end’s direction and Church’s helmet made contact with Gronkowski’s helmet. Church was fined 24,309 for the hit.
“Gronk” has ten touchdown receptions in his postseason career and trails only Pro Football Hall of Famers Jerry Rice (22) and John Stallworth (12) for the most in NFL playoff history. Gronkowski’s 856 receiving yards and ten touchdown receptions are the most ever by a tight end in NFL postseason history. He is the best vertical inside weapon for the Patriots.
Patriots strategy to win: G.O.A.T.
Here is the skinny, it sounds like a broken record, pressure Brady. Well pressuring him is not going to cut it. Keep the four-man Eagle front, blitzing will only help him find the open man. Brady’s acumen is impressive when it comes to identifying pressure before the football is snapped. “TB 12” has been here before. Nothing phases the future Hall of Famer.
Patriots 23, Eagles 17