By Brian Danuff 2/4/2018
The New England Patriots brought their A game in Super Bowl LII, but they didn’t bring their D.
In a 41-33 shootout, Philadelphia won its first ever Super Bowl, upsetting the defending champions Sunday night at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis.
Backup quarterback Nick Foles, who took over for the injured Carson Wentz in Week 14, was named Super Bowl MVP after completing 28 of 43 passes for 373 yards and three touchdowns.
Foles and the rest of Philadelphia’s offense were relentless in their assault on New England’s defense, passing and rushing the ball with ease. Former Patriot LeGarrette Blount and Jay Ajayi rushed for over 150 yards total, and Nelson Ahgolor, Zach Ertz and Corey Clement all made big plays downfield.
The game wasn’t without controversy, as head coach Bill Belichick benched cornerback and former Super Bowl hero Malcolm Butler, who was reportedly told just before kickoff he would not be playing. Butler told ESPN after the game, “they gave up on me.”
New England trailed by two scores as the first half came to a close and Philadelphia had all but silenced their running game. By the time the second half began, it was clear New England’s hopes of bringing home a sixth Lombardi Trophy rested solely on the shoulders of their ageless wonder.
In his eighth Super Bowl, 40-year-old Tom Brady forced the ball through the air 48 times, completing 28 passes for 505 yards and three touchdowns. Those 505 yards broke the record for most passing yards in a Super Bowl, previously set by Brady last year with 466.
New England was able to take a 33-32 lead late in the fourth quarter, but with 2:11 remaining, Foles connected with Ertz who dove into the endzone for a touchdown. Philadelphia failed to convert on a two-point play, but Brady fumbled on the next possession and a Jake Elliot field goal all but sealed the deal for the City of Brotherly Love.