Sam Landstra—Staff Writer
With five seconds left on the clock, Patriots quarterback Tom Brady snaps the ball in victory formation and takes a knee. Game over. Patriots: 13; Rams: 3. As the confetti falls, Patriots coach Bill Belichick hugs offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.
“We’re champs, baby! We’re champs!” Belichick says. On the opposite sideline, Rams wide receiver Robert Woods crouches alone, stunned by defeat.
Despite predictions of a high-scoring shootout between two elite offenses, Super Bowl LIII ended up being the lowest scoring Super Bowl of all time. The 16 total points scored between the Patriots and Rams severely undercut the whopping over/under line of 57.5 set before the game.
Obviously, the Patriots emerge as the clear winners of Super Bowl LIII. However, they aren’t the only ones, and neither are the Rams the only losers. Here’s a look at the biggest winners and losers from the largest sporting event of the year.
Winner: Tom Brady
The 43-year-old quarterback had a less than stellar performance on Super Bowl Sunday, throwing for 262 yards, no touchdowns, and an early interception on his first pass of the game. In fact, only four of Brady’s 21 completed passes traveled for more than 10 yards in the air.
However, once the confetti settles on the field of Mercedes-Benz Stadium, fans only remember one thing: championships. Despite his lackluster performance, Brady and the Patriots won their sixth Lombardi trophy, tying the Pittsburgh Steelers for most Super Bowl victories by a franchise.
Loser: Todd Gurley
The young Rams quarterback Jared Goff appeared to be lost in the spotlight on Sunday, overwhelmed by the defensive scheme of Patriots defensive coordinator Brian Flores.
However, Rams star running back Todd Gurley failed to make up for Goff’s poor play, rushing for a mere 35 yards on 10 carries. Gurley’s disappearance in the Super Bowl is not an anomaly either. During the NFC championship game against the Saints, Gurley amounted 10 yards on just four carries, despite being the third leading rusher in the 2018 season with 89 yards per game.
Quite possibly the biggest highlight of Super Bowl LIII was Ram’s punter Johnny Hekker breaking the record for longest punt in Super Bowl history with a 65-yard boot. As chance would have it, Patriots punter Ryan Allen previously held the record with a 64-yard kick from 2015. The two punters, who typically don’t see a lot of action due to their highly proficient scoring offenses, combined for 14 punts.
Loser: The Fans
If you like defensive battles and old-fashioned football, this was the game for you. However, the lack of scoring and big plays made Super Bowl LIII a rather dull one for most. Following a Rams field goal in the 3rd quarter that tied the game at 3, it appeared that the game would begin to take off. Nonetheless, the next two drives were capped off by punts from both teams.
Unimpressed by the style of play, Dordt freshman Jonah Bader stopped watching the game to attend Dordt’s GIFT service. “I have never been one to get hype about the Super Bowl, and this game has only proven to me how boring it is,” Bader said.
Despite an otherwise forgettable game, Super Bowl LIII provided an opportunity for many people at Dordt and in the Sioux Center community to get together and enjoy each other’s company.
In addition to their evening service, First Reformed Church in Sioux Center hosted their first annual Super Bowl party. Beginning at 5:30 p.m. in the church’s Youth Family Life Center, attendees were able to watch the big game on three different screens. For those that chose not to watch, games such as Spikeball and nine-square were set up in the gym along with food.
At the half, testimonies from NFL athletes such as Kirk Cousins and Case Keenum were shown instead of the Maroon 5-led halftime show.
“Not all athletes are people necessarily I’d want my kids to look up to,” said Scott Te Stroete, one of the organizers for the event. “But there are some really cool athletes out there that are Christians that love Jesus.”
Te Stroete estimates that around 30 people attended the party, and hopes to see more people, especially college kids, next year.