I’m not a huge football fan, and I never had the intention to post anything about Super Bow LI , but something about it just felt way too familiar.
With the sting of the Cleveland Indians’ own devastating loss in the World Series just barely starting to fade with a new season approaching, I can’t help but feel sorry for fans of the Atlanta Falcons. So much about tonight’s loss to the New England Patriots — from the huge early lead and more — was eerily reminiscent of last October.
Coming into the big game, the Falcons weren’t expected to win over the four-time champion Patriots. The Falcons had a slew of injuries to key players coming into the game, but they were carried by a MVP quarterback. Similarly, the Indians were heavy underdogs to the Chicago Cubs in the World Series, two of their starting pitchers were injured, and they were led by a former Cy Young robot in Corey Kluber.
When the game actually started, things continued to look eerily similar to the World Series. The Falcons quickly jumped out to the 21-0 lead with the New England Patriots looking deflated. The Indians, now infamously, jumped out to a 3-1 series lead, outscoring the Cubs 15-7 in those first few games.
I can’t say for sure how Falcons felt watching the game, but I remember Game 6 in the World Series being the first time where things really felt like they were over. I imagine Falcons fans’ own “Game 6” moment came somewhere in the third quarter when Tom Brady was marching down the field completely unopposed.
Where I think the fates of Falcons and Indians diverged was towards the very end of the game/series. The Indians at least got some respite in Game 7. I, personally, was already accepting defeating throughout much of that fateful game, but at least Rajai Davis gave me a home run that I’ll never forget. The Falcons never got that home run. Instead the Patriots got it, and the Patriots also got the benefit of the rain delay in the form of Tom Brady being near perfect in overtime.
Maybe the biggest difference of all, though, is that the agony of Indians fans was dragged out over a full week. But maybe it’s worse having everything crammed into three hours. I really wouldn’t know since I don’t follow football much anymore, and when I did I never followed any teams that made it far into the playoffs.
But just know that I feel for you, Falcons fans. This feeling will probably never fade completely but you, like those of us wearing Cleveland Indians red and blue, will eventually be excited about sports again.