All Good Things Must Come To An End ……. So Did Superbowl SBXLIV ……………
So it came and went , what was the NFL’s showcase event …. Superbowl 44 (SBXLIV). The two representatives of the AFC and NFC put on a thoroughly energetic display of all-out attacking football. And at times the Indianapolis Colts showed that their defense was more than capable of stopping the New Orleans Saints’ ‘prolific offense’. But when it was all said and done , the Boys of ‘The Louisiana Bayou’ would end up prevailing in an exhilarating and well earned 31-17 victory over the Indianapolis Colts.
Sun Life Stadium , Miami, played host to the event and its ensemble spectacle. The half time showed had veteran rockers ‘The Who’ perform many of their hits, the show of which was somewhat uninspired , to say the very least. But then again the demographics that the NFL tends to appeal to doesn’t always resonate with the masses at large . The preponderance of young kids watching may only know some of themes being sang as that to the various CBS hit shows from the ‘CSI’ (trilogy) dramas on the station, hosting the Superbowl itself. Good cross product tie in by the network , even if it was somewhat uninspired to begin with.
Courtesy of NFL.com and Associated Press
Miami Gardens, Fla. — Drew Brees grew up in Texas and started playing for pay in faraway San Diego. But he made New Orleans his home and its cause uniquely his own.
After 43 years of Saints futility and one of the finest quarterbacking performances ever delivered in a Super Bowl, Brees made sure there’s no need to ask “Who dat?” anymore.
Thanks to Brees, the answer to “Who dat say they gonna beat them Saints?” is nobody.
“We just believed in ourselves, and we knew that we had an entire city and maybe an entire country behind us,” Brees said Sunday after being voted MVP in New Orleans’ 31-17 victory over the Indianapolis Colts. “What can I say? I tried to imagine what this moment would be like for a long time, and it’s better than expected.”
“I’m just feeling like it was all meant to be. What can I say? The birth of my son, and in the first year of his life, we won a Super Bowl championship.”
The people of New Orleans now will embrace Brees tighter than some of their kinfolk. It didn’t hurt, of course, that when Brees arrived in 2006, both he and the city were at a crossroad.
A torn labrum in his throwing shoulder in the final game of the 2005 season, coupled with young Chargers passer Philip Rivers waiting in the wings, made Brees expendable in San Diego and left him wondering whether his career already was on the downside. When Saints coach Sean Payton drove Brees around New Orleans hoping to sell him on joining the Saints, the quarterback realized, seeing residents struggling to cope with the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, that he’d found the perfect place to begin his own comeback.
“Four years ago, who ever thought this would happen?” Brees said, still fighting back tears.
Earlier, as confetti swirled just above the playing surface at Sun Life Stadium, Brees’ eyes already were watering, trying not to cry as he held his son, Baylen, who was wearing a Saints jersey with his father’s name on the back and a headset so the loud celebration wouldn’t scare him. Brees struggled yet one more time to keep his emotions in check as he lifted the silver Lombardi Trophy over his head.
But a few minutes into his post-game interview, Brees simply quit trying.
“Eighty-five percent of the city was under water, all the residents evacuated all over the country, people never knowing if they were coming back or if New Orleans would come back,” he said. “But not only the city came back, and the team came back … when the players got there, we all looked at one another and said, ‘We’re going to rebuild together.’
“We leaned on each other,” Brees said, pausing as he choked up. “This is the culmination of that.”
Yet in the same way that New Orleans’ progress has come in fits and starts, so it was with the Saints in Super Bowl XLIV. After a rocky first quarter, Brees found his rhythm midway through the second quarter and finished with a record-tying 32 completions in 39 attempts for 288 yards and two touchdowns. He was never finer than during what turned out to be the go-ahead scoring drive, stringing together seven straight completions — to seven different receivers.
“Phenomenal,” Saints wide receiver Marques Colston said. “You really can’t put that kind of performance in words. To have 32 completions and two drops, he deserves the MVP.
“Hopefully,” he added, “you guys (in the media) can start putting Drew in that elite quarterback conversation.”
Consider it a done deal.
The game pitted two of the better quarterbacks in the NFL to have started a Superbowl in recent years and it was expected to be something of a chess match between these two celebrated stars of the league in, Peyton Manning of the Indianapolis Colts and Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints. And the two most certainly did not disappoint with their play. If anything they served to show they have two of the most prolific and accurate passers in the NFL, in recent years.
And for the respective coaches in, Jim Caldwell and Sean Payton , this was an experience to soak up and remember for years to come. They may well use it as anecdote to tell their children and grandchildren for years to come, into the future.
Initially it was the Colts who got off to a fast start and they harried and rushed the Saints and their offensive line. But once the Saints steadied themselves , the game took on something more of a competitive edge about it all aspects. It was never going to be blowout for either side but at the same you got the inclination that whoever made the least amount of mistakes would end up prevailing in the game. And when it was all said and done , that was inevitably became the case. And for residents and citizens of New Orleans this may well have felt like vindication and redemption for all that the city has been through over the past few years. At the height of its troubles , they well have felt that the world had left them behind and had forgotten about them. But that was never really the case . As it all came down to the haphazard way that the local , state and federal government agencies dealt with a natural disaster that was unimaginable and inconceivable to comprehend in the magnitude of the destruction caused and the psychological aftermath of the toll that it left on the city’s citizens , young and old. Never mind the lives that were lost in the tragic disaster that was ‘Hurricane Katrina’ . This victory by the Saints may well provide some and be part of the healing process in the end , as the city looks to pick up the pieces and rebuild.
For the moment , whatever the future hold for the Saints and its owner, Tom Benson remains to be seen. But somehow , I for one don’t believe that the masses and the fans of the NFL will begrudge the team , the organization or for that matter , the citizens of New Orleans their moment to shine and to be proud of the achievements of their team. Kudos to the New Orleans Saints on a well deserved victory !
Kellita Smith, actress and former model. Smith is more widely known for playing the wife of the late comedian Bernie Mac , on the Fox comedy hit ‘ The Bernie Mac Show’.