By Steven Keys

Seems fitting that the two NFL teams, New England Patriots and Atlanta Falcons, showcasing the two top players in 2016 in MVP favorites Matt Ryan & Tom Brady, should’ve successfully run their respective E-ZPass® playoff gauntlets and made it to the biggest sporting showcase on planet Earth, held this year at NRG Stadium, Houston, Texas, for Super Bowl Five-One.

Making his first appearance in the NFL championship game is Ryan, aka, Matty Ice, the Exton, Pennsylvania native who finally gets the Platform to showcase those super signal-caller talents he‘s been displaying in the NFC South for near a decade. In that span, Falcons have compiled a PS mark of 3-4 (67.6 C%, 16-7i).

For Brady’s part, the San Mateo, California native is just doing what he does. Mere mortals might go to the Florida beach once a year but Tom, when all that AFC fun is done, usually takes a trip to the Big Game, this being his 7th (4-2).

ryan-m-10-19-14-k-allison-702kThere’s not much more to write about the sure-fire Canton candidate, except that TB’s risen above the junior media’s rolling bitch-fest on Roger Goodell (likely the same scribes who’d vote in Barry & Roger), the Commissioner who meted-out Brady’s 4-game susp’n to open the season, stating that he, Tom, who did not make his phone available in the inquiry, holds no ill-will towards NFL’s top Cufflink. A Progressive in the spirit of Robert La Follette is Mr. Brady. His Dad? What are ya’ gonna’ do?

Fitting too that the two teams flagging destiny for most season, would end up facing-off in the Super Duper. Delivering on destiny is never a sure thing (See; Cats SB50, Dallas 2016), but one team in Houston will truck it.

Patriots (14-2) began their 2016 RS without Brady under center, using a duo of QBs in Jimmy Garoppolo and Jacoby Brissett, together managing a better-than-expected 3-1 mark, then lost Rob Gronkowski but just a mere one game the rest of the way. The A-Birds (11-5) stumbled outta’ the gate in a home loss to rival Tampa Bay (24-31), went on a 4-game streaker, then up & down at midway (2-3) but kept their heads about them and finished strong going 5-1.

Most certainly fitting is that the top head coach in the pros today in Bill Belichick will be strategizing across the NRG field from NFL’s hottest new head coach in the Falcons’ Dan Quinn. The Mighty one (with a win) is no stranger to the Big Game in having served expertly as DC to Pete Carroll in Seahawks two Trips.

........cherries.cloth.6.11.picdrome.wc.cca

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Super Cherry Pick: For All the Marbles

New England Patriots (16-2) v. Atlanta Falcons (13-5): 2.5 Fox 6:00 EST

This one’s simple: Defense. We know both teams are offensive juggernauts this season (15 straight for NE) and possess generally reliable kicking games, so it comes down to which can stop the scoring best over four quarters, the last being the key-Q. Falcons defenders, having stopped previously potent offenses in the Seahawks and Packers, have been playing over their heads, closing the regular season ranked #25 (yapg) and #27 (papg) while the Patriots are playing to form (#8 / #1), keeping opponent scoring close to their season average (15.5). In B&B’s two Super Bowl losses, both to the Giants (2008 / 12), their opposite in head-coaching was Tom Coughlin who’d previously turned Jacksonville into contenders as soon as their 2d year of existence (1997: AFCC loss to NE, 20-3), meaning, by the time Coughlin signed with NYC, he’d seen it all and had become a post-season pro. It’s Belichick Time. Patriots win.

Record: 87 – 93 – 3

........Wood.Topps.1970Steven Keys
NFL HunchLine
Photo credit: T.Brady, wc, A.Campbell, 9.14.14; M.Ryan, wc, K.Allison, 10.19.14; cherries-cloth, wc.cca, picdrome, 6-2011; W.Wood, Topps, 1970
Posted: 2.1.17 @ 2:21pm EST; Copyright © 2017

Filed under: Atlanta Falcons, New England Patriots, NFL

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