The most anticipated NFL season ever is in the books. Let’s take a quick look back to 2020 and with the arrival of Covid, the questions surrounding the league as to whether or not we would even get the 101st season of American football. There were numerous player opt-outs, the draft was moved from the fountains of the Bellagio Hotel to the basement of NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. Games were moved due to Covid outbreaks at team facilities, truly a season like no other. With the constant lockdowns and changing of the rules here in England, the NFL offered an escape from the real world on a Sunday. Something I well and truly lived for with no access to pubs with the lads.
I’ll touch on the super bowl briefly here and for me it was a strange one. Since I got into the NFL, all that I’ve known is our own super bowl party, “Farrbowl”, and without it it just didn’t feel the same this time. The regular season has been great but the super bowl, for me, is a party atmosphere with the boys; drinking, betting, dancing, taking the piss out of people and annoying Mark at all moments. This super bowl was a let-down! No tops off for the half time show, no half-naked piley-ons and no taking the piss out of Rob for going asleep at half time. Stokesy’s laminate squares game that always causes trouble was actually organised and ran virtually with no hiccups (I hate when it all runs smoothly) with no passing the quid cup round. Ian’s had the sense to stay away from these events, he’s always the man behind the scenes (- he likes to keep his hairy moobs covered at all times – [Ian])! Tom, the Farrbowl virgin, would have hated every second of it and also loved it all at the same time. The other regular lads I’m sure feel the same; Far, Ashy & Dyson, we all live for Farrbowl!
Back to the NFL 2020 season then, there were some huge upsets and we’ll cover some of these on the Podcasts over the close season; the Jets not getting the number 1 overall pick for this upcoming draft; the Dolphins accelerating through the rebuild; Josh Allen balling out; Lamar Jackson’s struggles; Joe Burrows horrible injury; the emergence of Justin Herbert at the Chargers; the amazing comeback story of Alex Smith at Washington; the abysmal NFC East shattering records left, right and centre for being terrible; Derrick Henry once again proving what a wrecking ball he is. And, of course, that huge half a billion-dollar 10-year contract Mahomes signed for the Kansas City Chiefs! The other big news of the offseason sparked the debate of Brady or Belichick, they finally split up and the dynasty was over, now just who was the main man behind the success of the New England Patriots? Was it QB Tom Brady or was it the defensive specialist head coach Big Bad Bill? Tom left New England after a hugely successful career plenty of people wrote him off, me included, ‘he’s finished’ ‘past it’ and plenty more not-very-nice things were said about Brady. He went to retire in Florida because that’s what old people do allegedly. Rob Thomas, host of the pod, king bullshitter’s throw-enough-shit-around-something’s-bound-to-stick approach, said why would Tom Brady go to the Bucs to a team that’s got a pirate ship and fires cannons? Oh, how sweet last night was, the “joke of a franchise”, in Rob’s eyes, made Patrick Mahomes look like a kid in this one.
It was billed as the G.O.A.T passing on the torch to Mahomes who was going to sweep his second super bowl in a row and be the youngest QB to win back to back Super Bowls… #runitback. Tom Brady wasn’t going to allow this. The man in his 10th super bowl had the chance to chalk up more Super Bowls wins than any franchise has won! Tom Brady won his 7th ring last night, now, was it down to him alone? Most definitely not. Todd Bowles had Mahomes like a deer in the headlights. The Bucs D had him scrambling around all game and Mahomes, to his credit, even banged up still made some incredible throws, however, he was let down by his offensive line, an O-Line that gave him no time to survey the field. The Bucs D was incredible and worthy of winning the super bowl. Tom Brady, however, took a losing franchise, in a season like no other, and turned them into winners, bringing that game-changing, winning mentality. It didn’t start rosy, but the Bucs under Arians, Byron Leftwich, Todd Bowles and of course TB12, got their act together after the bye week and haven’t lost a game since. The first team to ever host a super bowl at their own stadium and of course TB12 gets another record in the books, the only team to ever win a super bowl in their own stadium.
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The game was completely different from the championship game for the Bucs, Tom Brady protected the ball at all times, moved the offence, made use of his 2 running backs, which was always going to be the key to winning this one and relied on the Bucs D doing what it’s done the past 7-8 games since they were humiliated in the first quarter of the last game against Kansas.
Another year over, blue Gatorade the colour of choice to go over Arians, some questions remain to be asked. Is Mahomes as good as everyone thinks (of course he is)? Will Tom Brady hang up his cleats or will he feel he can go again and make it a mind-blowing 8 super bowl rings?
I for one am absolutely gutted this season is over and I’m already counting the days until Scott Hanson next says “7 hours of commercial-free football.”
The countdown to kick off begins…
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