If you made it through that game, congratulations. Maybe you deserve one of Tom Brady’s rings.
It would have been hard for anything to top Super Bowl LII -- we all remember what happened last year, right? -- but the Eagles' first title deserved a better sequel than what we saw on Sunday night.
The Patriots beat the Rams, 13-3, in one of the lowest-scoring games in Super Bowl history. Brady and Belichick picked up their sixth rings in the past 18 years. Julian Edelman was named MVP after a game devoid of highlights. Jared Goff and wunderkind coach Sean McVay are headed back to Los Angeles empty-handed.
Let’s take a look at how the whole evening unfolded, from the pro-Pats crowd at Atlanta’s Mercedes-Benz Stadium to the Eagles fans reminiscing on social media about how much better it was last year.
The last time Atlanta hosted a Super Bowl was in 2000, and it also featured the Rams. Although back then, they were still in St. Louis. Maybe if they were still in Missouri, a few fans might have made the trip. But it looks like they didn’t bother.
Before the game, Rams defensive coordinator paid tribute to his father, the legendary Bum Phillips.
Bum, who coached the “Love Ya Blue” Houston Oilers in the late ’70s before taking over as Saints coach in the early ’80s, was famous for his Stetson, his aviators and a flourish of fur. Wade, who coached on his father’s staffs back then, did his dad proud.
And Chris Long did Eagles fans proud when he took the field for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year ceremony. Long was named winner of the award, which honors a player’s community service and philanthropic efforts, during the NFL Honors ceremony on Saturday night. He beat out 31 other nominees from each of the other NFL teams.
“It’s a tremendous honor. It’s not why we do the work we do off the field,” Long said on Saturday. “I think the other 31 nominees are remarkable men. … I’m very humbled. It’s hard to feel deserving with those guys on the stage and this guy [Payton] on the statue."
All 32 nominees were on the field before the game, including the Raiders' choice, Marshawn Lynch.
And Lynch was being Lynch, which meant he went viral after sporting a beanie and sweatsuit (instead of a suit) and crouching down on the turf as he waited for the ceremony to end.
When 2017 winner J.J. Watt took the mic to introduce Long, Lynch realized he was right on camera. The solution?
Elsewhere on Sunday, Saints fans were doing exactly what you’d expect them to: mourning, once more, the end of their season -- an end they thought they didn’t deserve.
Sunday’s Super Bowl was the first held since sports betting became legal, and as one could imagine, there was plenty of discussion about prop bets.
Did you have the over on Gladys Knight’s national anthem? Smart choice. She finished at 1 minute, 49 seconds, according to my colleague Ed Barkowitz, then repeated the final word to stretch it out to 2:01. In his words: Yikes.
OK, let’s get to the game. Hate the Patriots? You probably felt great once that game started. Brady got picked on his first pass.
But if there’s anything the Patriots have taught us, it’s to not count them out. Minutes later, Rob Gronkowski pulled in a Brady pass that gave him the record for most catches by a tight end in Super Bowl history with 18. Not too shabby.
But Gronk’s momentum wouldn’t matter much, since the next Patriots' drive ended in a missed field goal by Stephen Gostkowski. Oof.
Again, for those who enjoy the Patriots' misery ...
But that’s not to say things were much more exciting for the Rams. In fact, the whole game was a snoozefest.
Fans were looking for something -- anything -- to spice it up. This wasn’t a bad idea.
And, if anything else, we could always just wait for the commercial breaks to come around.
Aaron Donald, 27-year-old the defensive player of the year, was certain to be a factor for the Rams. His target? None other than 41-year-old Tom Brady.
Donald got his hands on Brady, whipping him to the turf after Brady just barely got a pass off.
Fans immediately cracked jokes about the fact that Brady doesn’t get hit often, and seems to complain when he does.
But that would be one of the only highlights for Donald. Brady was well-protected, and his quick passes helped give his team the edge. Brady was sacked just 21 times this season, the third-lowest total of his career according to my colleague Paul Domowitch. Again, not too bad for a 41-year-old.
The first half ended with the Patriots up, 3-0. It was the first time the Rams had been shut out in the first half under 33-year-old head coach McVay.
Cue all those teams that hired McVay associates for open jobs the past few weeks ...
And then, it was time for the second-biggest attraction of the evening: the halftime show.
Wondering what all those SpongeBob SquarePants jokes are about, or why people were trashing Maroon 5? Read more here.
Super Bowl LIII continued to make history, but not for the right reasons.
And it continued to bore viewers -- but at least that meant they’d be sharing their jokes on Twitter instead of watching the game.
Finally, with just 2:11 left in the third quarter, Rams kicker Greg Zuerlein drilled one in to tie up the game.
With just over seven minutes left in the game, Patriots rookie Sony Michel ran in the only touchdown of the game to put the Pats up 10-3.
Fans at Mercedes-Benz Stadium were waiting for something -- anything -- to happen by that point.
And just a few minutes later, cornerback Stephon Gilmore seemed to put the game away with this Goff interception.
And all those fans who wanted to see Brady and Co. go down were sorely disappointed.
Eagles fans, on the other hand, had a decidedly different take on the evening.
After such a bummer of a game, why did the Birds have to give up their title of Super Bowl champs anyway?
Who says no?
My colleague Sam Carchidi brings up a point many Birds' fans were probably considering while watching the game.
Whether you’re a Patriots fan, a Rams fan or an Eagles fan, there’s one thing we can all agree on.
What now? Rhys Hoskins has an idea.
And highly coveted free agent Bryce Harper chimed in too, maybe to troll Phillies fans or get them excited for what could happen this summer.