Last night’s Super Bowl was a thing of elegance and grace. It was clear from the kickoff that the Eagles wanted it more, and that the Patriots were just about as intent on denying them the championship. So we spent the entire game watching, wondering which team would fold under pressure. Neither would. It was like seeing a sports movie or a highlights reel. Very few flags, few errors, almost no punts. It was an exhibition of precision both offensively and defensively. It was also very much a mental game.
The winning moment, in my opinion, was this. For just a quick split second, the Eagles felt dread right after the Patriots took the lead in the fourth quarter with 9:22 min remaining. A seasoned backup quarterback with nothing to lose, Nick Foles not only took it in stride, but he somehow managed to turn the tide around by changing his own and his team’s perspective. He dragged the clock upon possession, slowing the game a bit. At some point you had to wonder whether he would take all the remaining time left to make a play for a touchdown. Four minutes pass, then three. He was commanding time to do his bidding, like a badly bruised David soothing the seconds with the wind while Goliath bears down on him.
It was beautiful to behold. Very rarely have we seen a team and quarterback take control of a game while trailing. Ironically, this example of resilience and confidence calls to mind another Philadelphia hero, Rocky. For Foles the message was: “We WILL score. And then we’ll leave you no room or time for the slightest error.” And score, they do. The next Patriots offensive play bears out the rest. Tom Brady, who already had posted his own record setting game, and who had been untouchable throughout, gets sacked.
The Eagles came for the Patriots like a truck trailing a race car. While the Patriots were racing to the finish a la Days of Thunder, the Eagles were playing Fast and Furious. It will take almost up to the last minute, but the trailing, underdog Eagles finally pushes Brady, arguably one of the finest team drivers in NFL history, off a cliff. The end goal would prove too high and too far for the Patriot quarterback to overcome. The Philadelphia Eagles finally win their first championship since 1960, not to mention its very first Super Bowl. And the majestic Eagles are flying high once again.
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