It is fair to say that most of us are still a little shocked at what we witnessed in the Super Bowl on Sunday night. A game that a lot of people thought would go down to the wire ended up essentially being done at half-time, with Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers rolling to a comfortable 31-9 win. It says something about Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs that many of us sat and waited for them to turn things around and make a game of it, but it just never happened. Instead, the Buccaneers looked to be in control at all times, but what did they do right that led them to the win? Let’s find out so you can start planning your bets and place them against their NFL odds for the upcoming season.
Super Bowl Hangover: What Went Right the Tampa Bay Buccaneers
A Perfectly Executed Game Plan
While things went well on both sides of the football for the Bucs, you have to say that it was what they did on defense that really stood out. They held Patrick Mahomes under double digits for the first time in his pro career, mostly by applying the pressure all night long. They sacked Mahomes 6 times, but they had him on the run all night. That the number of sacks wasn’t higher is a tribute to the athleticism of the Chiefs QB. Even in the times when he did get away, the deep safeties basically shut down any big play opportunities.
A Balanced Attack
Even when you have the best QB ever to play the game, you still need to be able to control the clock and kill games. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers were able to do that by establishing the run game early and keeping the Chiefs off balance. Leonard Fournette put in a solid performance for the Bucs, delivering 89 yards and a TD run on just 16 carries. Every time the Bucs offense looked like it might stall, Fournette hit a run that put them in a much more comfortable situation. The passing game also worked, which is what we are going to get to now.
Brady Being Brady
The numbers posted by Tom Brady on Sunday were not in any way eye-opening, but what you see in those numbers is a QB that was cool and efficient. Overall, Brady went 21-29 for 201 yards, but it was the 3 TD passes in among that which proved to be killer. It certainly helped that his O-line gave him time all night long, allowing just 1 sack against a team that loves to blitz. Brady also avoided turning the ball over, which was huge, as giving the Chiefs any kind of momentum or field position may have made for a very different game.
While the Chiefs frequently lost their cool and took penalties that hurt the cause, the Buccaneers stayed disciplined from start to finish. It was one of the most clinical performances I have seen in quite some time, and whether you love him or hate him, you have to say that Tom Brady was fully deserving of the MVP award.