In Review

Super Bowl XLIX: Brady breaks records as Patriots cling on

Seattle Seahawks blow their chance to ruin Tom Brady's day as Patriots stand firm with seconds remaining

New England Patriots 28 Seattle Seahawks 24. An interception in the end-zone with just 20 seconds left on the clock earned record-breaking quarterback Tom Brady and the New England Patriots victory as Super Bowl XLIX came to a thrilling conclusion in Phoenix.

After the game the focus was understandably on Tom Brady, who was voted most valuable player and became only the third quarterback in history to win four Super Bowls and shattered a series of records in the process. But he was a helpless spectator as the drama of the Seattle Seahawks' final drive was played out. 

Seattle had taken what looked to be a decisive ten-point lead in the third quarter only for Brady to march the Patriots to two touchdowns in the fourth, leaving the score at 28-24 with the Seahawks in possession and a little over two minutes on the clock.

And Brady, appearing in his sixth Super Bowl, would have experienced a feeling of deja vu when Jermaine Kearse took an extraordinary catch to leave the Seahawks just a few yards from the Patriots' end-zone.

Kearse leapt for the ball only for defender Malcolm Butler to tip it away from his hands, but as the pair fell to the floor the ball bounced up off Kearse's legs and into his hands as he lay on his back, without touching the ground. It was reminiscent of Super Bowl XLII when the Patriots were undone by the famous 'helmet catch' by New York Giants receiver David Tyree.

But this time luck was on the Patriots' side as the Seahawks, camped on the one-yard line, elected to throw the football rather than run, and Butler this time made a crucial interception.

"It was a stunning conclusion, and also a baffling one," says The Guardian. "Why had they chosen to throw the ball at all when running it would seem more logical on second-and-goal from the one-yard line? Marshawn Lynch had already pulverised the Patriots for 102 yards on 24 carries, and the Seahawks still had 26 seconds and a timeout remaining in case he did not get in."

And as for Kearse's miracle catch? "[It] will go down as a footnote in Super Bowl history, and not one of the greatest and flukiest plays ever had the Seahawks finished off the Patriots," says Yahoo.

It also meant that Brady could collect his fourth Super Bowl ring and third MVP award, after inspiring his team to victory with four touchdown passes and a total of 328 yards.

Brady's Super Bowl landmarks:
  • Second man to play in six Super Bowls (after Mke Lodish)
  • Third QB to win four Super Bowls (after Joe Montana and Terry Bradshaw)
  • Second man to win three Super Bowl MVP awards (after Joe Montana)
  • Most touchdown passes in Super Bowls - 13 (beating Joe Montana's record of 11)
  • Most pass completions in a Super Bowl - 37
  • Most completions in a career - 164
  • Most passing yards in a career - 1,524

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