Brady or Ryan: Who will deliver the title?

Fat Guy Corner


 

 

The two week wait for Super Bowl LI is close to being over with. The kickoff between the New England Patriots and Atlanta Falcons will be around 6:30 p.m. Sunday in Houston. The boys from Las Vegas have installed the New England Patriots as threepoint favorites.

I know many people across the world who don’t normally watch football will watch the Super Bowl. Their interest could be in the half time show, which for those of you who don’t know, Lady Gaga is performing this year. The usually awesome commercials entertain some people. I don’t think they have been as good lately, in my opinion.

The gambling office pool football squares will gain much attention from viewers. It seems like all who attend Super Bowl parties have some squares. The word party also applies to the Super Bowl, as numerous parties take place and many people miss work on Monday. That will happen as it does every year. Then we have all the friendly wagers between workers at the water cooler. Let’s not forget the guy on the corner taking a bet and the boys in Vegas take in action, too.

How about the number put out there that $4.7 billion will be bet legally, and illegally, on the Super Bowl? That’s a pretty big number, I say! This is why this game is basically a national holiday.

Let’s get back to the business at hand, though. The Fat Guy’s job is to pick the winner and break down this football game. It is the last game until September for the NFL, so let’s dig into this Super Bowl LI and find a winner.

New England’s quarterback, Tom Brady, is looking for ring No. five. He will be the first quarterback to ever win five Super Bowls if New England defeats Atlanta. On the other hand, Atlanta quarterback Matty Ryan is looking for his first ring. The two come into the Super Bowl both red hot. Tom was hot all season tossing 28 touchdowns in only 12 games and threw for 3,554 yards. I think the Deflategate suspension has been a motivating force for Tom all season long. How much would he enjoy receiving the Lombardi Trophy from Commissioner Roger Goodell? That would be some sweet revenge, now wouldn’t it?

Matt Ryan completed 69.9 percent of his passes and has not thrown a pick since Week 13. Matt completed 69 passes of more than 20 yards this season. The Falcons’ play on third down has been sensational converting 47 percent since Week 11. The offenses for both sides are electric and score often. Atlanta scored 58 touchdowns this season compared to the Patriots 51, making it No. 1 and 3 in the NFL.

The weapons for New England feature LaGarrette Blount and Dion Lewis at running back. Atlanta gives up an astounding 4.52 yards a carry! Atlanta’s running back duo of Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman are tough runners and can catch the ball, too! The Patriots’ defense is stingy against the run, however. The one thing I will say, is the Patriots’ defense will face the best quarterback it has faced this year. Here is a list of quarterbacks the Patriots went up against: Andy Dalton, Carson Palmer, Ryan Tannehill, Brock Osweiler, Charlie Whitehurst, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tyrod Taylor and Landry Jones. This list is pretty weak, if you ask me.

The receiving weapons for Atlanta lie in Julio Jones, Taylor Gabriel and Mohamed Sanu. Those are tough matchups for the Patriots’ secondary. I look for Malcom Butler to cover Julio Jones, which will be a great watch. Tom Brady will look for Chris Hogan, Martellus Bennett and his favorite target, Julian Edelman.

There is no shortage of offensive fire power on either team. The defenses will decide this football game! Who can get the critical stop on third down and get off the field? I consider neither defense top notch, nor do they pressure the quarterback very well. The key for Atlanta is to get Brady to move off the spot he loves in the pocket. If they don’t, Tom will shred the Atlanta “D.” The New England defense needs to negate Julio Jones in this contest and take away the big long plays of 20 yards or more. I love this matchup and it should be an absolute dandy! The Fat Guy prediction is Brady Five 31, Matty Zero 28. A late Patriots field goal wins it! thefatguy@mihomepaper.com.


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