This week's online feature is 'The Comeback King', where our writers look at some of the greatest sporting comebacks of all time. To kick things off- the colossal comeback from the New England Patriots in Super Bowl 51.
There have been a number of classic sporting comebacks and many have happened on the biggest stage. However, the New England Patriots comeback against the Atlanta Falcons in Super Bowl 51 arguably trumps them all.
The Super Bowl is unquestionably the biggest show on turf, an annual event which captures headlines the world over. Yet after Super Bowl 51, everyone had pretty much the same question in their heads- how on earth did the Patriots win? New England trailed by 25 points in the 3rd quarter, with the Falcons sitting pretty- and surely thinking they’d be lifting their first Lombardi trophy later on, leading 28-3. However, Tom Brady put in an unbelievable performance and the Patriots scored 25 unanswered points to tie the score at 28 apiece.
Then in overtime, James White ran the ball in for a New England victory, stretching over the goal line to secure the win. Brady arguably put in one of the sport’s greatest performances, breaking Super Bowl records by passing for 466 yards and winning his 4th Super Bowl MVP. Atlanta, on the other hand, bottled it like few other teams could (maybe Tottenham could give it a go) and have since found it hard to even get near another shot at lifting the game’s highest honour.
The Pats comeback was the largest in history and demonstrates just why they seem to be lifting the trophy every other year. The combination of coach Bill Belicheck and Brady at Quarterback is rarely beaten, demonstrated by this year’s victory over the Rams, where experience prevailed against the young LA upstarts. However, this comeback in 2017 was probably the standout moment in their storied careers of standout moments.